"You ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog..."
Elvis Presley

    

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I clearly remember the first time I heard Elvis Presley. I listened faithfully each week to the top ten hits played on "Lucky Lager Dance Time." In April 1956, a singer I had never heard of had reached number ten—Elvis Presley with "Heartbreak Hotel."

I have to admit there was no great epiphany. I liked him OK, and found him a bit "different," but I did not see him as a big star. (Since Elvis had already had some country hits and regional success, you can tell I led a sheltered life.)

Within a few weeks he had become a sensation, with a fanatic following and horrified parents unable to talk of anything else. I grew to like him over the next year, and Elvis and the Platters were the artists that made me a lifelong rock & roll fan.

Considering the on-stage and off-stage antics of today's entertainers, it's hard to believe that people got worked up over Elvis, but after all, it was a half century ago. I guess complete redemption came when the United States government issued a stamp in honor of the King. Now many other countries have issued Presley stamps, some of which are pictured below.

Elvis Presley’s top ten hits:* "Heartbreak Hotel," "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You," "Don’t Be Cruel," "Hound Dog," "Love Me Tender," "Love Me," "Too Much," "All Shook Up," "(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear," "Jailhouse Rock," "Don’t," "I Beg of You," "Wear My Ring Around Your Neck," "Hard Headed Woman," "One Night," "I Got Stung," "A Fool Such as I," "I Need Your Love Tonight," "Big Hunk o’ Love," "Stuck on You," "It’s Now or Never," "Are You Lonesome Tonight," "Surrender," "I Feel So Bad," "Little Sister," "(Marie’s the Name) His Latest Flame," "Can’t Help Falling in Love," "Good Luck Charm," "She’s Not You," "Return to Sender," "(You’re the) Devil in Disguise," Bossa Nova Baby," "Crying in the Chapel," "In the Ghetto," "Suspicious Minds," "Don’t Cry Daddy," "The Wonder of You," "Burning Love."

--Dick Estel, updated August 2006

*Billboard pop singles chart, as reported in the book Top 40 Hits, copyright 1992 by Joel Whitburn.

 
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The young Elvis: With his record collection; with his guitar; getting in touch with fans; listening to the screams
 
Elvis' first LP Album Early Elvis poster Good Rockin' (a foreign album) 1976 Live Concert Video
 
Special Collector's TV Guide Cover TV Guide promoting Elvis series The iconic US Elvis stamp US stamp, first day of issue
 
Elvis the biker Early days: Scotty Moore, Elvis, Bill Black A young Elvis in living color His big breakthrough hit
 
Elvis in Jailhouse Rock The classic Jailhouse pose Love Me Tender publicity photo Worst Elvis imitator ever
 
Elvis on stage 1972 Las Vegas appearance Central African Republic stamp Elvis, ready to leave the building
   
The 50’s Web Site Elvis Books at Amazon Special Elvis CD For Sale
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Elvis Music at Amazon The King of Web Sites
The Platters Fats Domino Everly Brothers Chuck Berry Little Richard Buddy Holly

 

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Updated July 17, 2017