Elvis Aaron Presley (January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977; middle name sometimes written Aron)a was an American singer, actor, and musician. A cultural icon, he is commonly known simply as "Elvis," and is also sometimes referred to as "The King of Rock 'n' Roll" or "The King". In 1954, Presley began his career as one of the first performers of rockabilly, an uptempo fusion of country and rhythm and blues with a strong back beat. His novel versions of existing songs, mixing "black" and "white" sounds, made him popular—and controversial—as did his uninhibited stage and television performances. He recorded songs in the rock and roll genre, with tracks like "Hound Dog" and "Jailhouse Rock" later embodying the style. Presley had a versatile voice and had unusually wide success encompassing other genres, including gospel, blues, ballads and pop. To date, he has been inducted into four music halls of fame. In the 1960s, Presley made the majority of his 31 movies, most of which were poorly reviewed but financially successful musicals. In 1968, he returned to live music in a television special, and performed across the U.S., notably in Las Vegas. Throughout his career, he set records for concert attendance, television ratings and recordings sales. He is one of the best-selling and most influential artists in the history of music. Health problems, drug addiction and other factors led to his death at age 42.
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