Happy 77th birthday Elvis Presley.  So I would refer to him as the King of Rock and Roll but it's not a label he liked.  He once said, "I'm not the King, Jesus Christ is the King", to a group of girls that had unfurled a banner that read, "Elvis Is The King", during one of his concerts.  He was taken from us far to soon. As most of you know, on August 16th, 1977 Elvis was found dead on the floor of his upstairs bathroom at Graceland on the very day he was supposed to start a new concert tour.

Elvis was a machine to many people.  Their were many who knew Elvis was a meal ticket.  Some of those people are still cashing in on his legacy to this day.  And then there were those who truly cared about him.  Those people tried to save him, but you can't save a man from himself.  Toward the end, Elvis was tired, he was sick and he knew he had problems.  But the image he had become was bigger than the man.  That's not to say he wasn't in control of his own destiny, he just got a little sidetracked.  To keep up with the demands and pressures of being Elvis Presley, he relied on...well... a little help to get through it all.  He thought he would retire to Graceland for a while to take time to rest, get healthy and fix some things in his life that needed fixing, only to find out that his manager, Tom Parker, had scheduled another tour.  If my memory serves me correctly, I believe it was via a simple phone call. Elvis had no idea he was going to have to hit the road again.   Had Elvis had time to heal, he may still be with us today.

To me, Elvis had 3 stages to his career...bubble gum, contemporary adult hits, and toward the end of his life...country.  I enjoy 1969 to the mid 70's the best, but I like most of his music.  I especially like the live performances.  It was said that Elvis always had a song in his heart, and I believe every note he ever sang passed through his heart before getting to his vocal cords, especially on the gospel performances.

When Elvis turned 40, age started to matter to him.  He once said, "Who's gonna want to see a 50 year old Elvis?".  He would have been 77 today and if he were in concert tonight, I'd would sure as hell be there.