Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Elvis Will Never Amount to Much

Posted By on Tue, Jan 30, 2007 at 4:00 AM

Time magazine has now made its complete archives available online, and it’s interesting to see what that venerable publication first thought of some of the biggest stars of our day. It turns out: Not much.

Here, for example, is their April 2, 1956, mention of a young singer from Memphis by the name of Elvis Presley. Time was pretty certain he would never amount to much of nothin'.

Elvis Presley: "Heartbreak Hotel" (Elvis Presley, Victor Records). A new singer with a new twist: a double voice that alternates between a high, unpleasant quaver, reminiscent of Johnnie Ray at his fiercest, and a rich basso that might be smooth if it were not for its spasmodic delivery. "Heartbreak Hotel," yelps the high voice, is where he’s going to get away from it all. Answers the basso: "He’ll be sorry."

Meanwhile, that same music reviewer called Joyce Bradley (who?) "a voice of sanity in a live-for-tonight era," and a group called the Hi-Lo's "just about the most virtuoso vocal quartet on records."

Other reviews by Time in the same article cited Bill Haley as "primitive to the point of idiocy," and Pat Boone as a "virile but slack-jawed crooner."

Yep, Time magazine could sure pick 'em. More?


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