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American Icon

In: Film and Music

Submitted By adurham28
Words 2270
Pages 10
Amanda Durham
English 191-36
Final Draft
Professor Glynn
1 May 2006

American Icon? Those of you who think Elvis is a cultural icon because of his ways of persuading his audience, are correct. In fact, I want to argue that he’s a champion cultural icon, the King of Rock and Roll, the Eternal Great. There are many reasons why this is true and I will lay these out in this paper. Elvis Presley is in fact, the ultimate cultural icon. He will never be replaced by anyone for many reasons. Thus, in this paper, I will argue that Elvis Presley is the ultimate cultural icon. For example, Elvis Presley and The Beatles represent the two poles of pop music superstardom. “On one side is the patriotic American truck driver with a voice that conquered the world over a two-decade career, and on the other hand, there are the four sharp-tongued Liverpudlians who came and went with the 60’s” (Webb). Former Beatle, John Lennon, once said, “Before Elvis, there was nothing” (Elvis Presley Quotes). “The question is, why Elvis? Why is Elvis—more so than Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Jr., and J.F.K.—consistently held up as an ‘icon of the twentieth century’” (Doss 2)? The reason Elvis is an icon is because he made an everlasting impression during his time. He was revolutionary. He influenced the teenage culture of the fifties and his music has shaped the styles of many recent artists. Musician Rod Stewart said, “Elvis was the king. No doubt about it. People like myself, Mick Jagger and all the others only followed in his footsteps” (Elvis Presley Quotes). Presley still has admirers of all ages: children, elderly, rock stars, and celebrities. He even touched the hearts of average people worldwide. He had a little something for everyone (Hammel). Elvis’s “longevity as a cultural icon is largely due to his flexibility, his willingness to take the same of what we most wanted to see. Whether our fantasies were psychic, sexual, cosmic, financial, or religious, Elvis accommodated all of us” (Doss 16). Elvis Presley, who was born almost fifty years ago, on January 8th, 1935, has long been recognized as one of America's most gifted, distinctive, and influential popular singers of all times (Palmer). One reason you will agree with me is because, Elvis Presley, known throughout the world by his first name, is “widely regarded as one of the most influential figures of twentieth century music and popular culture, and his status as a cultural icon appears ever stronger as time goes by” (Elvis Presley Enterprises). American pianist Leonard Bernstein believes that “Elvis is the greatest cultural force in the twentieth century. He introduced the beat to everything— music, language, clothes— its whole new social revolution – the 60’s comes from it” (Elvis Presley Quotes). This is not only true for the twentieth century, but also the people from our previous generations. Dick Clark, a nationally know television host once stated, “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” (Elvis Presley Quotes). According to the RIAA, as of 2006, more than a quarter century after his death, Elvis still remains the best selling solo artist in United States history. “After his death in 1977 his label, RCA, was shipping a record twenty million albums a week around the world, and had forty pressing plants working overtime, and in the twelve months following his death one third of all albums sold worldwide were Elvis albums” (Pop Dirt). As far as his standing as a cultural icon, which continues to develop even after his death, writer Lester Bangs said it best: "I can guarantee you one thing - we will never again agree on anything as we agreed on Elvis" (Elvis Presley: Performer). “The fact that Elvis’s music generated huge sums of money, and still does, is a testament to both musical merchandising of which radio continues to be an important part and to the enormous growth of America’s post Second World War economy and population” (Nemerov 88). In a Newsweek article published in August of 1969, it was said that “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” (Elvis Presley Quotes). A PBS documentary expressed Presley as “an American music giant of the twentieth century who single-handedly changed the course of music and culture in the mid-1950s.” “His recordings, dance moves, attitude, and clothing came to be seen as embodiments of rock and roll” (Elvis Presley Wikipedia). Elvis had a special look to him that teenage girls wanted to see and teenage boys wanted to imitate. His look was classic and pure (Great Scores). He was loved and dear to a large amount of fans. His fans imitated his special look. Along with his unique ducktail haircut, there was a demand for black slacks and loose, open-necked shirts (Elvis Presley, Wikipedia). It’s obvious that Presley was not one to follow trends, but instead, he set them. “Presley’s impact on the American youth consumer market was noted on the front page of The Wall Street Journal on December 31st, 1956 when future Pulitzer Prize-winning business journalist Louis M. Kohlmeier wrote, ‘Elvis Presley today is a business,’ and reported on the singer’s record and merchandise sales. Even now days, certain clothing attire, including blue suede shoes, immediately suggest Presley” (Broeske). “Half a century later, historian Ian Brailsford commented, ‘The phenomenal success of Elvis Presley in 1956 convinced many doubters of the financial opportunities existing in the youth market’ ” (Elvis Presley, Wikipedia). The new Elvis image was being accepted by teens and adults (Inglis 62). “For the next twenty one years, until Elvis died, his singing style, mannerisms and look continued to be imitated with surprising regularity, wherever his image, songs, or movies happened to be shown, regardless of major shifts in popular culture, music, and manner of dress, all of which he had helped influence in the first place, a decade earlier. But it was only after his death that the industry built itself around him, with hundreds, then thousands upon thousands of men of every race, creed, and nationality taking up a career for life, as Elvis impersonators” (Elvis Presley, Wikipedia). Another reason why Presley is regarded as more of a cultural icon than The Beatles is because, over time, numerous musicians have shown us what great rock and roll music is all about. The musicians have set early trends for generations to follow and fortunately for the American culture, we had one man do this single-handedly. Although Elvis Presley died several years ago, he still remains a cultural icon in the American music industry. Presley’s music captured the hearts of millions. “You have no idea how great he is, really you don’t. You have no comprehension, its absolutely impossible. Phil Spector a highly influential American record producer said, “I can’t tell you why he’s so great, but he is. He’s sensational” (Elvis Presley Quotes). Teenage girls attended his concerts in unprecedented numbers (Elvis Presley, Wikpedia). Presley has influenced numerous past and current music artists. “What do Britney Spears, Elton John, Jim Morrison, Bruce Springsteen and countless others have in common? They are all Elvis fans. Like it or not, Elvis has had a serious impact upon the modern day music industry, the political arena and modern film” (Hammel). “…it was like he came along and whispered some dream in everybody’s ear, and somehow we all dreamed it,” said singer/songwriter, Bruce Springsteen (Elvis Presley Quotes). Elton John once said “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 for me” (Elvis Presley Quotes). Singers like Jerry Lee Lewis, the Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly, Roy Orbison and others followed in his footsteps (Elvis Presley, Wikipedia). “Winking his eyes, licking his lips, wiggling his hips, shaking his legs, Elvis was excessive and emotional and definitely erotic. His legs were always in motion. Often he’d rise on his toes, seem on the verge of some impossible groin propelling leap, then twist, shimmy, dip, and shake in some direction you wouldn’t even have expected” (Doss 8). His gyrating hips captured the eyes of the teenage girls and he was soon given his nickname “Elvis the Pelvis.” These, Elvis’s most notorious moves through his full career, sent young teenage females screaming at the top of their lungs in delight. These similar moves are still seen in teen rock bands today. James Brown once put it, “He taught white America how to get down.” During Presley’s lifetime, his music influenced too many musicians to calculate. The reason why Elvis is so important is because of his influences upon modern popular culture and music. Whether or not you enjoy his music, he has likely influenced artists that you enjoy (Hammel). American singer/songwriter, Brian Setzer stated, “I don’t think there is a musician today that hasn’t been affected by Elvis’ music. His definitive years, 1954-1957, can only be described as rock’s cornerstone. He was the original cool” (Elvis Presley Quotes). Presley was named the King of Rock the day that he passed away. “He was the first American popular singer to intuitively understand and creatively exploit the then nascent medium of television, which made him a star almost overnight. In one stroke, he changed the sound, the look, and the feel of our popular music” (Palmer). Elvis changed the face of rock and roll forever. “Shattering musical and theatrical conventions, Elvis set the pace for the predominantly visual aura of contemporary popular culture: within a decade or so of his mid-1950s debut, flamboyant stage acts with Spectra-Color light shows and glitzy special effects became the norm for rock bands ranging from the Rolling Stones to the Grateful Dead” (Doss 6). Gospel musician, Al Green, said “Elvis had an influence on everybody with his musical approach. He broke the ice for all of us” (Elvis Presley Quotes). On August 16th, 1977 Elvis Presley passed away. Following Presley’s unfortunate loss in 1977, United States President Jimmy Carter, in an official statement after Presley’s death, said, “Elvis Presley’s death deprives our country of a part of itself. He was unique and irreplaceable. 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 all over the world, of the vitality, rebelliousness, and good humor of his country” (Elvis Presley Quotes). This statement, made by the President of the United States, just goes to show how important and loved Elvis Presley was and still is. Carl Perkins summed up the death of a cultural icon best when he stated, "We've lost the most popular man that ever walked this planet since Christ himself was here" (Hammel). Lea Frydman considers, "The voice, 25 years after his death, continues to astonish even those of us who have spent most of our lives listening to it with its power, range, and subtlety but above all, with its very believability." “Elvis, after all, is an American emblem, and debates and conflicts over who Elvis is and what he means are comparable to the debates and conflicts over what America is and what America means. If an “official” image of Elvis comes to dominate, one that translates exclusively in terms of dollars and profit, Elvis will just wind up joining all the other hollow American icons, from George Washington to JFK, who once satisfied our national craving for identity and definition. But if Elvis remains elastic, so that fans and others can continue to look at him and talk about him and remake him in terms of the history, complexity, mystery, pleasure, and pain that his image, and America's, demands, then Elvis may well survive into the twenty first century as America’s premiere icon” (Doss 259).

Works Cited
Broeske, Pat H. "Presley, Elvis (1935-1977)." 2000. The Gale Group Inc.. 12 April 2006 .
Doss, Erika Lee. Elvis Culture: Fans, Faith, & Image. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 1999.
“Elvis Aaron Presley.” 2006. Great Scores. 12 April. 2006 .
“Elvis Presley.” 2006. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.. 12 April 2006 .
"Elvis Presley." 2006. The Quotations and Sayings Database. 10 April 2006 .
"Elvis Presley: Performer." Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. 2005. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc.. 23 April 2006 .
“Elvis Presley Now Best Selling Solo Artist In U.S. History.” 2003. Press Room. 12 Apr. 2006 .
“Elvis Presley.” 2006. Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.. 12 April 2006 .
Hammel, Melissa. "King of Rock 'N Roll Still Alive in Hearts and Minds of Fans." The Daily Collegian. 09 September 1992. 12 April 2006 .
"Is Elvis The Best Selling Artist Of All Time?." Pop Dirt. 01 February 2006. 24 April 2006 .
Nemerov, Bruce. "Elvis's Influences: Popular Music." JSTOR. January 1991. 25 April 2006 .
Palmer, Robert. "ELVIS PRESLEY: HOMAGE TO A ROCK KING." The New York Times Archives. 18 November 1988. 15 April 2006 .
Webb, Alex. "Beatles vs. Elvis: Who is number one?." BBC News. 17 June 2002. 16 April 2006 .

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Message Decision for Close Up

...Message decision for Close up Close Up began as a revolutionary brand. It’s very first formula was the bright red, spicy cinnamon-flavoured gel. At a time when white toothpaste was indicative of good toothpaste, Close Up introduced the gel quality which slowly and steadily gained popularity and prominence worldwide. Close-Up toothpaste was different in other ways from its inception. It was also the first U.S. toothpaste to combine mouthwash and toothpaste into one product. Close-Up toothpaste debuted in 1967. From the beginning, Close-Up has been marketed with a sexual undertone. Advertisements for Close-Up gel toothpaste always included cuddling couples with bright white smiles. Today's Close-Up toothpaste advertisements promise to give you "the confidence to be playful during close encounters". In the earlier times, Close Up also focused on competing with the white toothpastes and therefore focused more on telling their consumers that their product has more of fluoride content, telling which makes the consumers think that the toothpaste has that essential component which is required for healthy teeth. As an extra, Close Up focused on making it a one for all toothpaste, so the commercials focused on telling them that the toothpaste can also function as a mouth wash which was something unique that they were offering over the other products. From the very onset, Close Up had focused on being a brand of toothpaste which has been responsible for the increased......

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Solution

...Contents Seven Keys to Creating a Professional Manual 1 How to Customize This Manual 1 About the “Picture” Icons 1 Section Breaks Are Key 1 About Pictures and Captions 1 How to Generate a Table of Contents 1 How to Create an Index 1 How to Change the Headers and Footers 1 How to Create a Numbered Paragraph 1 How to Save Time in the Future 1 How to Create a Document 1 More Template Tips 1 Index 1 Chapter 1 Seven Keys to Creating a Professional Manual Like the Chapter Title Style above and the Chapter Subtitle you’re reading, preset styles in Microsoft Word are just a few clicks away. t o save time in the future, print a copy of this document. Click Print on the File menu, and press ENTER to receive all eight pages of examples and instructions. With the printed document in hand, position yourself in normal view to see the style names next to each paragraph. Scroll through the document, and write the style names next to the paragraphs (press CTRL+HOME to reposition yourself at the beginning of the document). icon key 0 Valuable information 0 Test your knowledge 0 Keyboard exercise 0 Workbook review To create a drop cap for the lead paragraph, like the example above, select the letter T, and then type a new letter. How to Customize This Manual The “icon key” at left was produced by using the Heading 8 style for the words “icon key” and the List Bullet 5 style for the text below—which uses a Wingdings symbol for the bullet......

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Research Paper

...Reflection on the myths behind the cryptids of the ADNU Intrams: KRAKEN (ACE)- The Kraken is a sea creature characterized by its distinctly octopoid appearance. It seldom emerges from its underwater refuge, preferring to move the earth and the tides with its massive tentacles. It is at once a creature of wanton destruction and creative upheaval. It is at once an impartial architect and a chaos-bringer. As it destroys, it too shapes the face of the world. COATL (ANSA) - The Coatl is a winged serpent. It is the serpentine being embracing Hermes' caduceus. Despite the raw terror it invokes, it is a creature that heals wounds and whispers secrets. Its fangs bear either venom to destroy the wicked or poultice to heal the pious. It holds within its mortal coils the power to dispense life or deliver death. It is both bane and boon to anything it touches. DRAGON (ABBS) - The Dragon is an ancient beast distinguished by its reptilian nature. Despite its savage exterior, this creature is a bearer of auspices and fortune. It is a wielder and master of treasures. It keeps within its fiery sanctuaries the wealth of nations. No one, except the worthy, are allowed audience. It chooses, with with and caution, the few who may share in its gold and spoils. PHOENIX (UECS) - The Phoenix is a fiery raptorial bird that holds the key to life and death. It is consort to the fires of adversity. As it immolates itself, it rises anew from the ashes. It progresses through the cycle of fiery......

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Behaviors

...Click Add Behaviors in the behaviors panel and select Drag AP Element. The Drag Ap Element dialog box will appear (see figure below). Select the Basic tag and from the drop down list Select the desired div. Click OK Select File | Save All to save the changes. Using Assets and the Dreamweaver Library Window | Assets. From the Main menu select The Assets panel should appear in the files panel. Select the Images group from the Assets panel. Click the desired photo to select it. Click and drag this file into the desired editable region and add alternate text. Select the Library group in the Assets panel. Then select the paragraph in the editable region and drag it into the bottom section of the Assets panel. An icon and Text box should appear. Name the icon and press Enter to update Library. Save...

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