Does anybody else agree that placing Elvis at number ten in Variety magazines list of the 100 most famous/influential entertainers of the past 100 yrs was an insult??, I mean James Dean, Brando, Lucille Ball, the Beatles polled higher....how is that. Elvis shouldn't have been even considered, that's how far ahead he is in my Opinion......
Happy bday to the KING!!!
I just read this post - and have not seen the list - but I am surprised the king rated so low.
How does James Dean rate higher? Elvis may have copied Dean in the image department (as did plenty of others - or were they copying Elvis?), but the impact Elvis had upon modern popular music is difficult to measure.
As for a couple of the other names you mentioned - I don't even want to go there.
Exactly mate. Where they came up with some of the names ahead of Presley I do not know. All were talented no doubt, but not in ElvisExactly mate. Where they came up with some of the names ahead of Presley I do not know. All were talented no doubt, but not in Elvis' league.Exactly mate. Where they came up with some of the names ahead of Presley I do not know. All were talented no doubt, but not in Elvis' league....
I think Elvis lost serious style points for the way he went out.
Of all the entertainers of the past 100 years, Elvis
Presley stands alone in terms of all-around impact
in popular tastes, especially in the music world.
When he came onto the scene in the middle
1950s, the youth market came into the forefront
with tremendous force and the world would not
be the same over the next fifty years. Yes,
the Beatles may have been the main influence
on the popular tastes of millions of people who
were born during the late 1940s and early 1950s,
but Elvis was the one who started the ball
rolling in a big way.
- Chuck Johnston
All true. Unfortunately, you've got to look at a performer's entire career, not just the high points. The Elvis of the Sun Sessions, Louisiana Hayride, the Ed Sullivan Show, "Hound Dog," the Comeback Special, etc., was certainly deserving of a high ranking. Unfortunately, the guy's career also had some pretty cringeworthy lows...the string of "C" movies, "Rock-A-Hula Baby," the rhinestone jumpsuits, Las Vegas, the snaps with Nixon as "honorary drug enforcement agent," the Jungle Room at Graceland, the "Elvis Having Fun Onstage" LP, and an end as a chubby, drug-addled paranoiac recluse, shooting televisions, gorging on fried peanut butter sandwiches and clutching his heart on the Graceland john.
If only Elvis' career highlights were considered, he might very well be #1. But no doubt a lot of the voters were young enough to remember only Fat Elvis, not Skinny Elvis.
Do we also then consider Lennon's dabbling with heroin and 5 year absense, and Ringo's post-Beatles work when assessing the Beatles? No - you consider them for what they were when they were who they were.
I love that line. Makes no sense at all.
No other popular entertainer had the impact on people that Elvis did. When he showed up he was a badass - loved by youth and feared by parents. He was the ultimate "anti-establishment" guy. Then somewhere along the line, he was accepted by the establishment, and while his movies sucked, he continued to put out a string of top 40 songs every year. Were they all Heartbreak Hotel? No way. But they weren't "Somethin' Stupid" either. Then he became an establishment all to himself, now accepted by the parent and rejected as uncool by the youth who were more into idiots who bit the heads off bats in concert. But the records STILL flew off the shelf.
Any guy who had over 100 top-40 charted singles in 20 years has to be considered an icon. But Elvis was something more - the creator, as it were. First rock'roll badass, first popstar, first overkill mass-marketed singer, first sellout, first everything. And everyone noticed every little thing he did. He was beyond stardom.
Even if he did sing "Edge of Reality" and star in "Girls Girls Girls".
Elvis definitely WAS all that in the beginning. No doubt.
Problem was, by the time the Beatles started sucking, they were no longer the Beatles. They were John "Double Fantasy" Lennon, Ringo "Rotogravure" Starr, Paul "Let 'Em In" McCartney, and George "Crackerbox Palace" Harrison. That's why their entry is described as "The Beatles." This (1963-1970) is when they had their influence and, like James Dean, they flamed out near their zenith.
Elvis was always Elvis, right down to the jumpsuits and the TCB belt buckles and the Memphis Mafia and the cover of "My Way." The Cheese was always sold under the Elvis brand.
Hey, I don't know why they put him at #7. But I think this is a pretty educated guess.
I thought "Hello, Goodbye" was far worse and bubblegummy than anything Elvis ever released. But that's just me. PeteLeo.
He was number ten, not 7. As for the Beatles, they were obviously a hige impact through the world with their style of music, but I can't help but think of Buddy Holly when I listen to their early stuff. Let's be honest if you could go to see any performer on stage at their absolute peak, who are you going to choose???, the Beatles??. I say Presley all the way. As a solo performer he had so much style and charisma, Lennon or McCartney don't come remotely close. If those guys were solo performers I strongly think they would hardly have made the top 100. On their own those guys were 'drips', no real charisma or personality.....
Guys I was born in Liverpool and I still live there - erm here - and I think Elvis wipes the floor with the Beatles.
I'm in the line for the Elvis tickets.
I am a big fan of Buddy Holly's music and feel
there isn't any doubt that just about all of the
early British musical invasion acts seemed
to borrow heavily from the music of the late
rock-and-roller from Lubbock, Texas, including
the Beatles. Of course, it is hard to find any
rock acts who weren't influenced by Holly
after the late 1950s.
By the way......Buddy Holly switched from
country music to rock-and-roll after Elvis
Presley came on the scene while recording
for Sun Records. In fact, Elvis had some
of his earliest gigs in Lubbock. This was
BEFORE Elvis hit the music world in a huge
way with his first no. 1 hit on the pop
charts, HEARTBREAK HOTEL. In other
words, Elvis's impact on rock-and-roll
music was huge in so many ways.
- Chuck Johnston
It is true that alot of Elvis Presley's films and
records of the post-U.S. Army period were
terrible. But Elvis DID make some fine records
in the late 1960s after making a musical comeback
after his film career started going south.
In regards to Elvis dying young, I wonder if part of
the reason was due to heredity. After all, his mother
also died young.
- Chuck Johnston
Agreed Chuck (though I see your argument DScribe). I think it's strting to get easy to forget just ho whuge Elvis was though - the guys been dead for 27.5 years (is that possible?). He'd be 70 friggin years old. Can you imagine?
Elvis was not only the monstrous influence that Chuck and several others mention, he was simply put the biggest star in the world. Even when the Beatles were at their biggest they may have been selling more records and changing music much the same way Elvis had 10 years earlier, but they were never the iconic superduperstars that Elvis was. He was Brad/Angelina, Garth Brooks, Britney Spears, JLo, the Backstreet Boys, Metallica and Desperate Housewives all tied into one. EVERYONE knew everythinng he did - not just a little of this and a little of that. And all before paparazzi styled media blitzes as well. He was one of the few truly larger than life icons of all time.
When he went into the army, tens of millions of teens prayed that he wouldn't see combat. When he got married, tens of millions of women cried that they wouldn't be "the one". His movies sucked but were still big hits (three of his movies were the #2 grossing film of it's year). And everyone that hated what he stood for or hated his music still had a grudging like for him because he was such a charming, witty and likeable guy.
Every woman wanted to be with him, and every man wanted to be like him. Everyone wanted to be near him. I don't really see how anyone compares when it comes to "famous-ness" or influence in entertainment. The guy had his fingers into everything, was a success at everything, and though he never made any show of it, had the world at his feet just because he was who he was and everyone was endlessly fascinated by him.
And hell, though I feel for his family, I'm glad he checked out when he did. Nobody wants to see a guy like that fade away.
I got to know Presley a little bit when i was working on the
" Kid Galahad " set i found him to be a very nice person , he was a guy who for all his fame did't put on any airs.
I would not argue with a survey that placed him at #1. I acknowledge the truth of everything you guys say. He was a monumental influence. My only point is that, in order to explain his relatively low rating in the Variety survey, you might point to the fact that his career/image descended into kitsch at the bitter end in a way that the others never did. By 1976, I didn't know too many guys who wanted to be Elvis. Like many other performers who reached such amazing heights, he stayed a little too long at the fair, if you get my drift.
Personally, I would rather see Dylan and the Band in 1966 than the Beatles, Holly or Presley!
Well that says it all....Bob 'dreary' Dylan over Elvis.......
By the way I take it back about Lennon, he did have real style and charisma...he wasn't the 'drip' I said in a previous post. Paul was more boring to be honest, a gentleman but a little too boring.....
He may not have had the D.A. haircut and the swivelling hips, but he's managed to remain vital and relevant for 40 years. He's got staying power.
Yeah with the most monotonous and annoying tone ever. Hardly pure raw entertainment is it??...fair enough he wrote some great tunes, but he couldn't sing or perform to save his life....You were making some very good points up to that clanger!!!!
What's the deal man? Someone doesn't agree with something you believe, so you tear down what they like? Very uncool way of handling things.
Dylan was as influential as anyone outside Presley himself. He literally left his mark on anyone that heard him. Again, it's easy to forget what an original he was, given his position in the music industry these days. But whether you like his singing or not, the man kicks some serious ass lyrically and musically.
And I think Sinatra sounds like he's phoning in virtually every performance. That I think that doesn't necessarily make it so, however.
I admit that Bob Dylan wasn't one of my favorite
singers, but he was the most important songwriter
in popular music over the last fifty years, had a
very original style, and made some terrific records.
As an influence on rock music, Dylan ranks third
with Elvis being no. one and the Beatles, no. 2.
I noted before that I feel that the Beatles were
the most important influence on much of my age
group in terms of musical tastes. Can you believe
that a number of people think that the Rolling
Stones had a greater impact than the Beatles?
I remember the late 1960s very well and can tell
you that the Stones don't come close to the Beatles
in terms of impact.
- Chuck Johnston
Dylan was not primarily a singer. He was a songwriter, and, at this he is without peer and his influence is pervasive. He created, while Presley merely interpreted. Even so, as a performer, he fused folk music and rock and roll, revitalizing a genre that had gone woefully stale by the mid-1960s. Elvis may have gotten the ball rolling, but Dylan was more responsible than anyone for keeping it rolling these past 40 years. Dylan is still winning grammies at a time when McCartney and the Stones are simply oldies roadshows, and Elvis barely registers with anyone under 50.
As far as pervasiveness of influence goes, there is no comparison really.
I don't think I tore anything down mate. I just wouldn't cross the road to listen to a Bob Dylan or a McCartney. I would however cross the road to hear Presley or the Beatles. Dylan I agree was a very talented songwriter and an innovator on the music scene for many yrs. I just always found it extremely nauseating to listen to the guy attempt to sing...
we can agree that Presley was superior as a singer, Dylan as a writer.
In terms of "influence" and all that, I suspect this is one of those "agree to disagree" situations.