Happy birthday, Elvis!

Everybody knows whose birthday it is today. Right? If not, here’s what is probably my favourite  (non-gospel) Elvis song.

And to follow up, a little 1970 mini-concert from the King himself (it looks like clips from a couple of different shows). His live performances are fun to see—it was certainly a different world then. The focus was on the singer and the music, not physical and actual pyrotechnics and auto-tuning and other fluff. A former singer myself, I’m old-school, and really just want the music. Elvis was flashy, but the man could sing! The glitter simply couldn’t overshadow that voice.

I love his gospel music, too—he sang those old hymns so, so wonderfully, just as we’d expect a good Southern fella to do. Many of his last concerts were heavily laced with the music Elvis had cut his teeth on, and those who attended or hear them say never before had the King performed so honestly, particularly when it came to those beautiful old songs.

One of his apparent favourite gospel tunes is also the favourite of many—”How Great Thou Art”. (Careful, I think he actually blows out the speakers near the end!) Some have suggested  Elvis sensed his own end was nearing, and that he was—as so many singers of faith aim to do—performing solely for the Audience Of One.

Marvellous. What a gifted man. It’s such a shame that this tremendously talented man went down the road he did, losing that life so soon—but we are blessed indeed to have his music to enjoy, both for ourselves and future generations.

Happy birthday, Elvis!

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