Sunday, April 28, 2013

Quotes About Elvis Presley

1. (Ian Gillan) Along with the rest of "Deep Purple", I once had the chance to meet Elvis. For a young singer like me, he was an absolute inspiration. I soaked up what he did like blotting paper. It's the same as being in school - you learn by copying the maestro. His personality was also extremely endearing, his interviews were very self-effacing (and), he came over as gentle and was generous in his praise of others. He had a natural, technical ability, but there was something in the humanity of his voice, and his delivery. Those early records at the Sun Records label are still incredible and the reason is simple: he was the greatest singer that ever lived.  

2. (James Brown) I wasn't just a fan, I was his brother. He said I was good and I said he was good; we never argued about that. Elvis was a hard worker, dedicated, and God loved him. Last time I saw him was at Graceland. We sang "Old Blind Barnabus" together, a gospel song. I love him and hope to see him in heaven. There'll never be another like that soul brother.

3. (Bono) In Elvis, you had the whole lot; it's all there in that elastic voice and body. As he changed shape, so did the world. His last performances showcase a voice even bigger than his gut, where you cry real tears as the music messiah sings his tired heart out, turning casino into temple. I think the Vegas period is underrated. I find it the most emotional. By that point Elvis was clearly not in control of his own life, and there is this incredible pathos. The big opera voice of the later years -that's the one that really hurts me. 

4. (Celine Dion) Tonight, I would like to pay tribute to the greatest entertainer of all time, Mr. Elvis Presley. Elvis was Las Vegas. And if it wasn't for him, so many performers like myself would not have the chance to do what we do in this town. He really was the king. 

5. (Placido Domingo) His was the one voice I wish to have had, of all those emanating from singers in the popular music field.

6. (David Lynch) It was THE beginning of rock 'n' roll.

7. (David Lynch) He embodied rock 'n' roll, he owned it 100 % - he was that.

8. (Eric Burdon) When at last I made my journey to the land of the blues, I never dreamt for one minute that I'd actually become friends with the guys who were my mentors, heroes and my cultural icons. (Witherspoon's) voice held a great mysticism for me, like when I first heard the voice of Elvis Presley - you knew it was coming from the source.

9. (Roy Orbison) He was the firstest with the mostest.

10. (Eddie Murphy) That's my idol, Elvis Presley. If you went to my house, you'd see pictures all over of Elvis. He's just the greatest entertainer that ever lived. And I think it's because he had such presence. When Elvis walked into a room, Elvis Presley was in the f***ing room. I don't give a f*** who was in the room with him, Bogart, Marilyn Monroe.

11. (Ian Anderson) I discovered the blues in a funny kind of a way, from the age of seven when I was listening to my father's war-time collection of big band jazz. It had that thing about it - I didn't really know what it was - , that set the pulse racing a bit; and then I heard echoes of it again, with early Elvis Presley

12. (Johnny Cash) That night at the "Eagle's Nest", I remember, he was playing a D-18 Martin acoustic guitar and he was dressed in the latest teen fashion, but the thing I really noticed though, was his guitar playing. Elvis was a fabulous rhythm player. He'd start into "That's All Right" , with his own guitar, alone, and you didn't want to hear anything else. 

13. (Bob Dylan) When I first heard Elvis' voice, I just knew that I wasn't going to work for anybody; and nobody was going to be my boss…Hearing him for the first time was like busting out of jail.

14. (Robert Plant) Once upon a time, all we knew about Elvis was that he sang like a m... ; and that was all that mattered; you know, when you gas up and you go to pay inside the gas station and you hear Elvis singing Surrender, (1961), you know that the mystery of that guy, was everything; the voice, and the mystery, and the not knowing; and I think the great thing about anything that you hear over the waves is, you don't want to know too much, you know?

15. (John Lennon) Before Elvis, there was nothing.

16. (Kanye West, in accepting Best Album honors in the Rap & Hip-Hop category, at the American Music Awards, on November 23, 2008) It's our responsibility as musicians to keep pushing each other, to keep competing with each other. It's a really great competition. I see here artists like Beyonce and Alicia Keys and Rihanna and Chris Brown and Chris Martin, all in the same room, and we're going to push this music to the point where it was like in the 1960s and '70s, when the talk was about Led Zeppelin, and Jimi Hendrix, and the Beatles. We (all) will be the new Beatles. We (all) will be the new Hendrix; (in fact) in any other industry, they'll tell you that you're supposed to do better than those in the past, so when you say: "I want to be Elvis," they say: "What's wrong with you?" Well, I wanna be Elvis. 

17. (Mick Jagger) He was a unique artist - an original in an area of imitators.

18. (Beyonce) Elvis is iconic; a lot of performers today look to that for inspiration.

19. (Beyonce) When you think of Vegas, you think of Elvis; you think of show business; you think of flash. You think of those performances.

20. (Elton John) Ask anyone. If it hadn't been for Elvis, I don't know where popular music would be. He was the one that started it all off, and he was definitely the start of it for me.

21. (Elton John) It was Elvis that got me interested in music. I've been an Elvis fan since I was a kid.

22. (Cher) The first concert I attended was an Elvis concert when I was eleven. Even at that age he made me realize the tremendous effect a performer could have on an audience.

23. (Isaac Hayes) Elvis was a giant and influenced everyone in the business.

24. (Mick Fleetwood) I learned music listening to Elvis' records. His measurable effect on culture and music was even greater in England than in the States.

25. (B.B. King) I remember Elvis as a young man hanging around the Sun Studios. Even then, I knew this kid had a tremendous talent. He was a dynamic young boy. His phraseology, his way of looking at a song, was as unique as Sinatra's. I was a tremendous fan, and had Elvis lived, there would have been no end to his inventiveness.

26. (Rod Stewart) Elvis was the king. No doubt about it. People like myself, Mick Jagger and all the others only followed in his footsteps. 

27. (Frank Sinatra) His kind of music is deplorable, a rancid smelling aphrodisiac…It fosters almost totally negative and destructive reactions in young people. 

28. (Frank Sinatra) There have been many accolades uttered about Elvis' talent and performances through the years, all of which I agree with wholeheartedly. I shall miss him dearly as a friend. He was a warm, considerate and generous man.

29. (Faith Hill) When I saw Elvis on television, I just fell in love with him completely. As a singer, I want to be able to relate to an audience like this man does. Of course, nobody can - he was the best there ever was. 

30. (Faith Hill) It's insane the charisma he had. I've never seen anything like it to this day.

31. (Cissy Houston, mother of Whitney Houston) Elvis loved gospel music, he was raised on it, and he really did know what he was talking about; we would jam with him for an hour, and he had a feel for it and was "tickled" to have four "church sisters" backing him up; he was singing Gospel all the time, (in fact), almost anything he did had that flavour. You can't get away from what your roots are. 

32. (Garth Brooks) I'm sitting in the drive-through and I've got my three girls in the back and this station comes on and it's playing "Jailhouse Rock," the original version, and my girls are jumping up and down, going nuts. I'm looking around at them and they've heard Dad's music all the time and I don't see that out of them.

33. (50 Cent) That period was different. When Elvis was there, they were stopping everything. Elvis had the moment for real. While I'm here, it's not all about 50 Cent, but it was all about Elvis.
34. (K.D. Lang) He had total love in his eyes when he performed. He was the total androgenous beauty. I would practice Elvis in front of the mirror when I was twelve or thirteen years old.

35. (Willie Nelson) In his heyday, when he was really hot, there was an explosion of energy between Elvis and his audience. I wasn't a wild fan of Elvis's, but put the man onstage doing his music, and you got something more powerful than the sum of its parts. You got magnetism in action. Maybe it was sexual, I don't know, but if ever a performer could get up onstage and turn a crowd into crashing waves of energy, it was Elvis. Yet Elvis couldn't really whip up a Las Vegas dinner-show crowd on a regular basis. I went to see Elvis one night on the Strip and I slipped in at the back of the room and listened a minute and thought: what is going on here? There was Elvis up there working his ass off, and the crowd was just kind of politely exhausted. They clapped and whistled, but you couldn't feel them giving anything back. I felt like jumping on top of a table and yelling: "Hey everybody, that's Elvis Presley up there! You should be jumping and screaming"

36. (Brian Setzer) I don't think there is a musician today that hasn't been affected by Elvis' music. His definitive years - 1954-57 - can only be described as rock's cornerstone. He was the original cool.

37. (Dick Clark) It's rare when an artist's talent can touch an entire generation of people. It's even rarer when that same influence affects several generations. Elvis made an imprint on the world of pop music unequaled by any other single performer.

38. (Rob Thomas) People think that we're crazy because we do six nights a week. I would physically not be able to take it, especially when you see how much he put into every show…He created this larger than life style and he pulled it off.

39. (Joe Perry) You couldn't take your eyes off of him.

40. (President Jimmy Carter, his official statement following Elvis' death in 1977) Elvis Presley's death deprives our country of a part of itself. He was unique, irreplaceable. More than twenty years ago, he burst upon the scene with an impact that was unprecedented and will probably never be equaled. His music and his personality, fusing the styles of white country and black rhythm and blues, permanently changed the face of American popular culture. His following was immense. And he was a symbol to people the world over of the vitality, rebelliousness and good humor of this country.

41. (Senator Al Gore) It's always been my dream to come to Madison Square Garden and be the warm-up act for Elvis.

42. (Bill Clinton) You know, Bush is always comparing me to Elvis in sort of unflattering ways. I don't think Bush would have liked Elvis very much, and that's just another thing that's wrong with him.

43. (Dave Marsh) Elvis Presley was an explorer of vast new landscapes of dream and illusion. He was a man who refused to be told that the best of his dreams would not come true, who refused to be defined by anyone else's conceptions. This is the goal of democracy, the journey on which every prospective American hero sets out. That Elvis made so much of the journey on his own is reason enough to remember him with the honor and love we reserve for the bravest among us. Such men made the only maps we can trust.

44. (Chris Daughtry) Elvis was never short of any stage performance. There is still a lot to be learned there. It gives you an idea of how to work a stage. He drew people in, you know, defiantly. He had that look; he looked like a star.

45. (Chris Daughtry) I can't compare myself to Elvis, not even a little bit. People put you on a pedestal; it almost feels like you're being worshiped sometimes which is not normal for a human being to deal with, not even a little.

46. (Imelda Marcos) He was ahead of his time because he had such deep feelings. He had the privilege of deep feelings because he was deeply loved by his mother, Gladys. He was able to appreciate profound beauty in sounds. And he started a musical revolution. They say all revolutions start from love.

47. (Huey Lewis) A lot has been written and said about why he was so great, but I think the best way to appreciate his greatness is just to go back and play some of the old records...Time has a way of being very unkind to old records, but Elvis' keep getting better and better.

48. (Ed Sullivan, during Elvis' third appearance on his show, January 6, 1957) I wanted to say to Elvis Presley and the country that this is a real decent, fine boy.

49. (Al Green) Elvis had an influence on everybody with his musical approach. He broke the ice for all of us.

50. (Paul Beaureguard, Jordan Houston, Three 6 Mafia) They're talking 'bout the hood, talkin' 'bout where we come from. My mother always listened to this song when I was young. They talk about the things she went through, you know. She had a bunch of kids, like 9 kids, you know what I'm sayin'. That's how you get somebody to listen to your song, you talk about what they know about and what they want to hear.

51. (Carl Perkins) This boy had everything. He had the looks, the moves, the manager, and the talent. And he didn't look like Mr. Ed like a lot of the rest of us did. In the way he looked, way he talked, way he acted - he really was different.

52. (Howard Thompson) As the lad himself might say, cut my legs off and call me Shorty! Elvis Presley can act…Acting is his assignment in this shrewdly upholstered showcase, and he does it.

53. (David Fricke) At Sun Studio in Memphis Elvis Presley called to life what would soon be known as rock and roll with a voice that bore strains of the Grand Ole Opry and Beale Street, of country and the blues. At that moment, he ensured - instinctively, unknowingly - that pop music would never again be as simple as black and white.

54. ("Time Magazine," May 15, 1956) Without preamble, the three-piece band cuts loose. In the spotlight, the lanky singer flails furious rhythms on his guitar, every now and then breaking a string. In a pivoting stance, his hips swing sensuously from side to side and his entire body takes on a frantic quiver, as if he had swallowed a jackhammer.

55. (Dewayne "The Rock" Johnson) Woman wanted him, men wanted to BE him, or just hang out with him.

56. (Walter Matthau, who co-starred with Elvis in "King Creole," from a 1987 interview) He was an instinctive actor…He was quite bright…he was very intelligent...He was not a punk. He was very elegant, sedate, and refined, and sophisticated.

57. (Bones Howe) So what it boils down to was Elvis produced his own records. He came to the session, picked the songs, and if something in the arrangement was changed, he was the one to change it. Everything was worked out spontaneously. Nothing was really rehearsed. Many of the important decisions normally made previous to a recording session were made during the session. What it was was a look to the future. Today everybody makes records this way. Back then Elvis was the only one. He was the forerunner of everything that's record production these days. Consciously or unconsciously, everyone imitated him. People started doing what Elvis did.

58. (Bruce Springsteen) There have been a lotta tough guys. There have been pretenders. And there have been contenders. But there is only one king.

59. (Bruce Springsteen) was like he came along and whispered some dream in everybody’s ear, and somehow we all dreamed it.

60. (Eddie Condon, "Cosmopolitan," December 1956) It isn't enough to say that Elvis is kind to his parents, sends money home, and is the same unspoiled kid he was before all the commotion began. That still isn't a free ticket to behave like a sex maniac in public.

61. (Leonard Bernstein) Elvis is the greatest cultural force in the twentieth century. He introduced the beat to everything, music, language, clothes, it's a whole new social revolution - the 60's comes from it.

62. (Jackie Wilson) A lot of people have accused Elvis of stealing the black man’s music, when in fact, almost every black solo entertainer copied his stage mannerisms from Elvis.

63. (Hal Wallis, Producer of nine of Elvis' films) A Presley picture is the only sure thing in Hollywood.

64. (John Landau) There is something magical about watching a man who has lost himself find his way back home…He sang with the kind of power people no longer expect from rock 'n' roll singers.

65. (Brandi Carlile) The first thing I think of when I think about coming to Las Vegas and playing is always Elvis; its always the first thing on my mind.

66. (Phil Spector) You have no idea how great he is, really you don't. You have no comprehension - it's absolutely impossible. I can't tell you why he's so great, but he is. He's sensational.

67. (Patti Sciaifa) Elvis, to me, is a symbol of tremendous promise and that kind of American hopefulness, where you can come from nowhere and have nothing and build yourself up and chase that American dream.

68. (Greil Marcus) It was the finest music of his life. If ever there was music that bleeds, this was it.

69. ("Newsweek," August 11, 1969) There are several unbelievable things about Elvis, but the most incredible is his staying power in a world where meteoric careers fade like shooting stars.

70. (W.A. Harbinson) …a style and panache that come close to pure magic. Lithe, raunchy, the sweat pouring down his face, he now moves with the precision of an athlete, the grace of a dancer…flamboyant and flashy, sexy and self-mocking, he works with the instincts of a genius to give poetry to the basic rock performance.

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