Thomas Presley, Jr.
Presley was not only an entertainer in American pop music but he was an icon, shaping generations of musicians from Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins to Bob Dylan.
Colonel Parker revolutionized American popular culture through his innovative merchandising tactics, although ultimately found operating unethically. Parker nonetheless achieved significant strides towards making Elvis one of the highest-paying live attractions.
Early Life and Education
Thomas spent his early life working as an editor at Hartford Music Company before running a music supply business himself. Additionally, he composed songs and hymns.
Network censors were concerned that his pelvic gyrations might influence young girls in America and instructed camera operators only to show him from waist up. Yet despite these reservations, he made an immediate impactful statement and became an instant star.
After an initial period of use involving amphetamines and painkillers, his career reemerged in 1968 with Hooked on a Feeling, an uptempo orchestral pop song featuring Thomas’ breathy vocals that quickly made its way to number five of the charts. It marked Thomas as an unforgettable star.
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He became synonymous with early rock and roll music – an uptempo blend of country, rhythm and blues and rhythm and blues with its own distinct rhythms and beats – through hits such as Hound Dog and Jailhouse Rock that established him as a cultural icon.
Parker ensured Presley would receive national exposure on television at a time when many managers were wary of this new medium, while also negotiating lucrative record company deals and lucrative contract renewals with RCA/Fontana/Odeon etc. In his later years hits became harder to come by but he was still one of America’s premier live draws and also an accomplished actor.
Achievement and Honors
Thomas Presley was a decorated Army paratrooper who saw service in Germany and Vietnam. His military achievements earned him numerous honors including the Soldier’s Medal, two Purple Hearts, and a Bronze Star award. Additionally, Thomas became well-known gospel singer known for his charitable endeavors.
He was beloved cultural icon and was mourned by fans worldwide. On the day of his passing, an unprecedented amount of flowers were delivered to Graceland on this historic date.
His signature style of rock and roll music earned him the moniker, “The King of Rock and Roll.” With 18 number one hits to his credit and several Grammy Awards for gospel recordings, Elvis earned himself the moniker as “The King of Rock and Roll”. Lisa Marie Presley remains his only daughter; four grandchildren remain. Elvis himself lies buried at Graceland cemetery near those of both parents.
Crooner John Otway has no trouble courting controversy. After making his name performing Elvis Presley songs at working men’s clubs and pubs across Wales, Otway joined the Army and served as a paratrooper.
Parker gained Presley national exposure through television, infuriating other managers. Furthermore, Preslaw, which documents Presley-related court opinions, news articles and lawsuits, reported that Parker gave himself half of Presley’s earnings even after his death.
After Linda Jones died in 2016, there was widespread speculation regarding his possible romance with former Elvis wife Priscilla Presley Priscilla Presley; however, Jones has since clarified that they remain only friends, although vacationing and holidaying together. They even traveled together to Hawaii.
Elvis Presley, known as the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, amassed millions, but often spent much of it irresponsibly – often on extravagant items like his private jet and Graceland mansion – as evidenced by its spending spree.
Due to Colonel Tom Parker’s questionable dealings, Elvis passed away with only $5 million left in his estate; and this figure has likely been diminished further due to his devious dealings. According to Celebrity Net Worth estimates, Parker only had a net worth of approximately $1 million, far lower than Elvis earned throughout his lifetime.
Priscilla Presley has also established herself as an accomplished businesswoman, becoming the chairwoman of Elvis Enterprises (which manages her late husband’s properties and earns royalties from his music), as well as owning shares in Elvis Presley Memorial Church.