• Abigail Mathias

Has Elvis really left the building?

So yes I am a music buff and like most quarantined souls, I am addicted to the Netflix specials.

When Elvis Presley - The Searcher, showed up on my feed this week, I was not going to stop till I completed the entire season.

Without giving too much away, this larger than life song-writer, guitarist, actor, arguably devoted son and father has been depicted in minute detail.

There is a simple finesse to the documentary. The likes of the late, Tom Petty and the 'boss' himself, (Springsteen) have discussed at length about the legacy that Elvis undoubtedly had on the world of music. He has had an impact on most artists from the time he first burst on the scene.

As I tried to piece together my own love of this heart breaker of a singer, I can attempt to understand the mass hysteria. It is easy to get drawn in to the misty eyes of a man, who's "Are you lonesome tonight?" Can still make a few girls from 2021 weak in the knee. The leather jackets, the puffy hair and that smile was something that he got down to a science in itself.

There have been many rock and pop bands who have tried to replicate his unique bluesy sound. Many who have tried to emulate his curly lip and cheeky pelvis thrust.

While a plethora of impersonators pay their tributes, there are those who have panned the artist calling him a loner, a womaniser and an addict- the latter is sadly what cut short his life at the age of 42.

Inevitably it is a life that still draws mystery. I could listen to "Suspicious minds" over and over again wondering what exactly the singer was relating to when they put those tunes and back up vocals together.

As for his personal life, his wife, Prascilla Presley states, "they held hands during a very difficult and public divorce." It must have been hard for him to have two masters, she states in the docu series.

Unlike the documentary on his son in law (Michael Jackson) this one delves in to the thin line that iconic characters like Elvis Presley have to cross when it comes to their public and personal space. In recent times artists like Bieber and Rihanna have vehemently mocked the media for prying too closely.

I remember the 80's when a friend who was much older than me, had a black and white poster in his living room of Elvis hung up in his family apartment in India. He confidently told me he worshipped Elvis. Countless others replicated his music in various Hindi films of the 60's and 70's. I wonder if Elvis ever estimated the impact he had on the world.

He does mention in one clip that he would want to go to Japan. Having only travelled outside the U.S. when he was drafted to Germany to fight the war. Behind the highly embroidered jump suits and the large sunglasses, was a man who clearly was not able to stop.

Watch the series if you are a fan. The enigma that is Elvis prompts me to believe he does not have to be contained to his sprawling mansion in Graceland. He has survived the test of time.

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