Today, sadly, we commemorate the loss of the greatest human being ever to walk the planet. No, it's not Christmas and I'm not talking Jesus — I mean Elvis Aaron Presley, who passed away Aug. 16, 1977.
Sure, Elvis didn't invent rock 'n' roll — Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Chicago blues artists and Louis Jordan combined to do that — but he definitely changed the genre and damn near perfected it — all while looking cooler than an Alaskan ice chest. Had it not been for those darn “natural causes,” perhaps the King would still be with us today, a spry 78-year-old singer performing three shows a night in Vegas while doing damage to every buffet on the Strip. Unfortunately, Elvis is dead and we're stuck with Wayne Newtown, but we can watch the King on YouTube and pretend he's still with us, which is almost as good, right?
Here then are five videos to make us want to hurry up and get to heaven so we can see the greatest pompadour ever walk on stage to “See See Rider.”
5. Bossa Nova Baby
Why don't venues like this exist anymore? And why can't we find singers who can sing, dance and play an organ standing up while tapping their toes? While there might not be good answers to those questions, at least we've got this video (taken from the amazingly awesome Fun in Acapulco) to show us how vaguely-Latin pop songs should look and sound.
4. Great Head
What? You think Led Zeppelin invented groupies? Or that Elvis couldn't have possibly been raging because your grandma loves him? Well, think again because this video proves the King was partying harder than Amanda Bynes at her neighbors' house.
3. If I Can Dream
Holy shit — are you seeing that white coat? And that red tie? What about that hair? For just one minute in our lives, we should be so lucky to look so fucking dapper.
2. Suspicious Minds
Never trust any Elvis list that doesn't include “Suspicious Minds.” That said, the word “jumpsuit” is always synonymous with “freak,” “weirdo” and/or “nerd.” The exception is Elvis, who looks fucking bomb in this white jumpsuit. Yeah, it's got frilly lace hanging from it and he's showing more chest than your uncle at a Fourth of July bar-be-cue, but your creepy uncle isn't singing “Suspicious Minds” while doing so. Or is he?
1. Baby What You Want Me To Do
Whenever people give me shit for liking Elvis, I refer them to this clip for the King's uber-legendary '68 Comeback Special. On the surface, we find Elvis singing a killer blues called “Baby What You Want Me To Do.” He's wearing a black leather jumpsuit and (as always) his hair is perfect, so it's easy to get sidetracked and not see the level of talent here. However, listen to that guitar tone, then pay attention to just how damn good Elvis was as a musician. He begins the track with a standard E to A to E to B blues riff, but right around the thirty second mark he really starts rocking. By this point, I'm sold that Elvis wasn't just a pretty face, but then at the thirty-nine second mark, the camera closes in on the King's right hand as he downstrums like a mofo before pulling off a ridiculous lead that no pop star today would even bother trying. Then there's his sultry/smooth vocal performance that laid the foundation for porno rock. Seriously, I'm hard just thinking about it.
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