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presley31
09-12-2007, 04:43 PM
Entertainment Icons Like the Rock and Beyonce Say Elvis Had Style.

Elvis Presley was light years ahead of other entertainers as he continually adopted new elements into his fashion repertoire, always reinventing himself. (AP Photo / Getty Images)
He was the ultimate entertainer, full of life onstage and a talented, prolific musician. But what set Elvis Presley apart from other rock stars was his unique and completely original sense of style.

Both icon and iconoclast, Elvis took his stylistic cues from contemporary fashion trends but continually broke new ground. From the elaborate jewelry he wore to the way he styled his hair, Elvis had a truly distinctive style ? and 30 years after his death, his legacy continues to influence today's musicians and performers.

"When you think of Elvis, and when you think of sparkle, and you think of show business, you think of flash, you think of those performances," says Beyonc? Knowles. And I think still, to this day, modern performers look to that to get a lot of inspiration."

The king of rock wasn't just on the cutting edge of the style curve ? he was light-years ahead of it. Always adopting new elements into his fashion repertoire, Elvis continually reinvented himself.

"Elvis's fashion changed all the way through his career. He never locked himself in one decade," says Julie Mundy, author of "Elvis Fashion: From Memphis to Vegas." "So, he certainly followed fashion, even though he was a trendsetter in his own way."

Elvis started honing his personal style at a young age, refusing to adhere to convention, even in his school years. A child of the South, he was heavily influenced by black culture ? both its music and its style.

"He liked bright colors. He got that from black entertainers, from the black culture, in general," says Alana Nash, journalist, and author of several books about Elvis. "He liked anything flashy. He liked anything that made him stand out."

In creating his legendary persona, Elvis borrowed elements from his personal passions. His infamous white jumpsuits, and the kicks he incorporated into his choreography, were a nod to his love of martial arts. These elaborate jumpsuits Elvis wore in some of his shows, accompanied by capes and jewelry adorned with his motto TCB, which stood for "Taking Care of Business" in a flash reflected a childhood adoration of comic book characters.

His famous hairstyle with the long sideburns can also be traced to his affinity for comics. "You could look at Captain Marvel comics and look at that thing," says Paul Simpson, author of "Rough Guide to Elvis." "I think, actually, you can see roughly where it came from."

The superhero theme was not lost on Elvis admirers. The first time Elvis impersonator Brendan Paul put on his custom-made jumpsuit; he, too, felt the power of Elvis' early influences. "I went home and stood in front of the mirror," says Paul. "I was like a kid in a Superman costume."

In the 1970s, Elvis became one of the first celebrities to personify "glam rock" ? a style that blended androgynous, ostentatious clothing and jewelry, and was later mimicked by such artists as David Bowie.

With his ornate jumpsuits and accessories, "he certainly did pioneer a kind of look that blended the sex appeal of men and women," says Nash.

Elvis took flashy garments and put his own spin on them, making them more glamorous and more memorable. Many of today's R&B artists take their cues from Elvis's habit of wearing lots of sparkling jewelry.

"Elvis was into bling before any hip-hop artist was ever into bling," says actor Dwayne Johnson, also known as the Rock.

Through the decades, Elvis's style continually evolved, and for every element he borrowed from contemporary trends, he added a number of his own. A veritable fashion chameleon, Elvis's different incarnations spanned the style spectrum.

But one thing is for certain ? the King was always ahead of his time.

marijaep
09-12-2007, 08:13 PM
So true ! :clap:
Very good article Jen, it's a nice read :D
Thanks for posting it here :notworthy :D

Diane
09-12-2007, 08:21 PM
Thank you Jen, that was a great article and true for sure.(y)

Diane

Vissie
09-12-2007, 08:26 PM
Thanks for sharing!

The King's Queen
09-12-2007, 08:27 PM
Thanks Jen...great article!

Jailhouse-Rocker
09-12-2007, 08:40 PM
thnakyou! brilliant article. a very nice read!

KPM
09-13-2007, 12:10 AM
He and Sammy Davis Jr-invented bling-they just didn't call it that.:D:D