The Career, Life, And Family Of The King, Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley went by many names. “The King” was one of them. This man became one of the most famous musicians of his time and went on to cement himself in history.

He and his wife Priscilla and their daughter Lisa Marie became America’s first family in a way. But with all of that fame and recognition came a lot of scandals.

Meeting Priscilla

Elvis met Priscilla Beaulieu at a party at his house while he was stationed in Germany during his army service.

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Photo by Keystone/Getty Images
Photo by Keystone/Getty Images

Priscilla’s step-father was a US Navy Pilot at the time, and he banned her from seeing Elvis because she would always miss curfew when she was with him. Elvis was able to charm Mr. Beaulieu, and he promised he would never bring Priscilla home late again.

Priscilla’s First Trip

When Elvis left Germany, he and Priscilla stayed in touch over the phone. After a lot of negotiating and pleading, Priscilla’s parents agreed to let her visit Elvis in Los Angeles if she complied with a number of conditions and if Elvis paid for her first-class flight.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Elvis planned to take Priscilla to Las Vegas even though it was against her parents’ wishes.

Their Marriage

Even though it was Elvis who asked Priscilla to marry him in 1966, many people have said that he did so because he was pushed into it.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Apparently, Priscilla threatened to go to the media or press charges against Elvis if he didn’t agree to marry her. Elvis had no choice but to marry Priscilla.

There Were Multiple Affairs

Elvis wasn’t just a singer, he was a bona fide heartthrob. Almost every woman wanted to be with him, even though he was married to Priscilla.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

When asked about other women, Elvis claimed that he and Priscilla had an open marriage. The other women just took him at his word.

Elvis And Ann-Margaret

Elvis and Ann-Margaret met on the set of Viva Las Vegas in 1964. Apparently, their instant chemistry was undeniable. They had a brief relationship and when Ann called Graceland, her code name was “Thumper.”

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Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images
Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

When Priscilla found out about the affair and confronted Elvis about it, he denied it and said he was just spending time with Ann for publicity.

Priscilla Is Not So Innocent

When most people think about Elvis and Priscilla’s marriage, they think of Elvis as the one with other relationships, but Priscilla wasn’t so innocent herself.

Photo of Elvis Presley & Priscilla Presley
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Elvis lost interest in Priscilla after she gave birth to their daughter, so Priscilla decided to have relationships with other men. When Elvis found out about it, he told her he would pay more attention to her.

The Divorce

Elvis and Priscilla really didn’t get along after Lisa Marie was born. They were living in different cities and having relationships with different people.

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Photo by Magma Agency/WireImage
Photo by Magma Agency/WireImage

In 1973, Elvis filed for divorce and became very jealous of the other men in Priscilla’s life. After the divorce was finalized, Elvis and Priscilla agreed to share custody of Lisa Marie. Even though they got divorced, Elvis and Priscilla remained friends. They left the courthouse hand in hand.

Priscilla Lost Herself

Priscilla felt like she lost her identity when she was thrust into the limelight. Everything about who she was was wrapped up in being Elvis Presley’s wife.

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Photo by Magma Agency/WireImage
Photo by Magma Agency/WireImage

Priscilla said, “I was kind of lost really in who I was earlier in my life, I really didn’t have teenage years, I learnt so much about him and was with him so much that I thought the way he did, I knew what he liked…I knew his thoughts, I knew everything as far as you could possibly do when you live together at such a young age.”

Elvis Was A Germophobe

In 2015, Priscilla told the public that Elvis had a serious issue with germs. His issues with cleanliness bordered on OCD. Elvis wouldn’t use anyone else’s silverware. Priscilla said, “He never liked to go to people’s homes to eat because [he] didn’t like eating with other people’s silverware, so he would take his own silverware.”

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Also, whenever he drank out of a cup, he would put his lips near the handle because most people don’t put their lips there.

He’s Always Looked Different

Elvis’ signature look has been causing him to stand out from the crowd since he was a teenager. In high school, he looked much more mature than the rest of his classmates.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Getty Images

He grew sideburns and styled his hair with rose oil and Vaseline. This hairstyle would later become distinctly “Elvis.” Elvis didn’t spend time playing sports or going to parties like the other kids in his class. He spent all of his time listening to blues and immersing himself in music.

Elvis’ Father Went To Jail

The public didn’t know about Elvis’ father being locked up until much later. Elvis’ manager wanted to protect his public image, so he told Elvis not to talk about his father’s sordid past.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Getty Images

In 1976, Vernon Presley was imprisoned in Mississippi State Penitentiary for forging a check. Vernon was given the check for selling a motorcycle. He wasn’t impressed with the selling price, so he added some more zeros.

Elvis Never Wanted To See Her Getting Ready

It later became clear that Elvis had many ideals when it came to the women he was interested in. In an interview with Country Living, Priscilla later revealed the strange request that Elvis made. He always wanted to have a mystique about himself, and he wanted his wife to be that way, too.

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Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

“He never wanted to see me getting dressed. He wanted to see the result of getting dressed,” she said. “I left because… I needed to find out what the world was like. I didn’t really know who I was.”

Elvis’ New Girl

Just five months after Elvis and Priscilla separated, Elvis started a relationship with Memphis beauty queen, Linda Thompson.

Music - Elvis Presley
Jim James – PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images
Jim James – PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images

Elvis and Linda were together for four years. Linda said that their relationship was “special,” but that she knew that Elvis was never faithful to her.

Lisa Marie Got The Estate

Lisa Marie Presley became the joint-heir to her father’s large estate. She shared the estate with Elvis’s father and grandmother Vernon Presley and Minnie Mae Presley.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

In 1980, Lisa Marie became the sole heir of Graceland, Elvis’ multimillion-dollar home. At this point, Lisa Marie has sold 75% of the estate.

Plotting Against Priscilla’s Lover

In 1973, during one of Elvis’ shows, four men climbed on stage and tried to attack Elvis. Elvis was convinced that the men were sent by Priscilla’s lover, Mike Stone.

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Getty Images
Getty Images

After this incident, Elvis became obsessed with getting revenge on Stone. Some of Presley’s close friends actually offered to get a hitman, but Elvis declined the offer.

Elvis’ Weight Gain

As Elvis got older, he began to gain weight and lose his figure that he was known for. Apparently, Elvis’ weight gain got out of control after a mild concussion.

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Photo by Art Zelin/Getty Images
Photo by Art Zelin/Getty Images

Elvis was suffering from headaches and insomnia and his behavior became erratic.

Elvis’ Secret Surgery

Elvis’ partner Linda Thompson later revealed that Elvis had a secret facelift when he was 40 years old. Elvis was going through a midlife crisis and he thought he needed surgery to help him with his body image issues.

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Photo by GAB Archive/Redferns
Photo by GAB Archive/Redferns

Thompson also revealed that Elvis was especially self-conscious about his “skinny little chicken neck” and that’s why he wore those trademark high collars. This was apparently the only cosmetic procedure that Elvis ever had.

Elvis’ Extreme Diet

After Elvis gained a bunch of weight, the public turned on him and started publically shaming The King. Elvis decided that he needed to go to extreme lengths to get back down to his previous weight.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Elvis would sleep for most of the day and only get up to go to the bathroom. Everyone around him was worried about his health.

The Accidental Pregnancy

In 1971, Elvis had an affair with Capitol Hill staffer Joyce Bova. Joyce had an identical twin and she and Elvis were able to bond over that fact. Elvis spoke to her about his own late twin brother.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Elvis and Joyce had a very close relationship, and Elvis offered to leave Priscilla to be with Joyce. At one point, Joyce got pregnant with Elvis’ baby. She never told him about the pregnancy.

Elvis And Nixon

In 1970, Elvis got the opportunity to meet President Richard Nixon in the White House. In the meeting, Elvis talked about his patriotism and how he doesn’t really care for hippie culture and thought that the Beatles’ influence was anti-American.

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Photo by National Archives / Getty Images
Photo by National Archives / Getty Images

Elvis asked Nixon for a Bureau of Narcotics badge as he was collecting patriotic items. Nixon got a bit uncomfortable and denied Elvis’ request. However, Elvis was later given the badge in a private meeting.

After The Divorce

Elvis took the divorce from Priscilla pretty hard. His health started to decline after the official split. Even though he threw himself into his music, there was no denying that he missed his former wife, Priscilla.

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Photo by RB/Redferns
Photo by RB/Redferns

The public began worrying about The King’s health.

Tedious Touring Schedule

Even though Elvis was going through a lot of health issues, he wasn’t going to let that stop him from touring. In 1973 alone he performed 168 concerts.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

That year in Maryland, Elvis walked on stage and was a complete mess. Everyone around him was begging him to take a break, but he refused.

Elvis’ Signature Hair

Sure, Elvis is famous for his voice and his songs, but he’s also just as famous for his look and his style. In some ways, Elvis’ style was his biggest asset.

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Photo by Ronald C. Modra/ Getty Images
Photo by Ronald C. Modra/ Getty Images

Elvis’ hair was a big deal. He didn’t let very many people cut it. He trusted Mr. Gill, his mother’s hairdresser, so Elvis would fly him out to wherever he was when he needed a little touch-up.

A Real Mamma’s Boy

He might have had numerous girlfriends and lovers, but there was one woman who truly had Elvis’ heart from the beginning, and that was his mother, Gladys Presley. Gladys was very close with her son and Elvis and Gladys even had pet names for each other.

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Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

They often communicated using baby talk and they were around each other as much as possible.

Obsessed With James Dean

Elvis’ style didn’t materialize out of thin air. Many believe that Elvis modeled his persona and style after actor James Dean. James Dean was something of a rebel, and he always did well with the ladies.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Elvis even dated Natalie Wood, a good friend of Dean’s and his co-star in Rebel Without a Cause.

Elvis’ Favorite Sandwich

Elvis had a strange obsession with a particular sandwich. The sandwich, which is now called the Elvis Sandwich, is a peanut butter, bananas, and bacon sandwich on a whole loaf of crusty bread.

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Photo by Keith Beaty/Toronto Star via Getty Images
Photo by Keith Beaty/Toronto Star via Getty Images

Elvis first tried the sandwich while in Colorado. He flew to Denver to get the recipe and then gave the recipe to his chef in Memphis. This sandwich is also known as “fool’s gold.”

Dying His Hair

If you know one thing about Elvis Presley, you know that he has a very unique, slicked-back, jet black hairstyle.

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Photo by Keystone/Getty Images
Photo by Keystone/Getty Images

The thing is, his hair isn’t actually naturally black. Elvis was born with blonde hair, but he dyed his hair black because he wanted to look more like his idol Tony Curtis. He also dyed his eyelashes black and the chemical they used for his eyelashes caused him to suffer from chronic migraines.

Lisa Marie’s Scientology

Lisa Marie joined the Church of Scientology in 1977. Her mother, Priscilla was already a member of the church and she brought Lisa Marie into the religion. Lisa Marie earned a Humanitarian Award from the World Literacy Crusade, a group affiliated with Scientology.

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Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic
Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

In 2016, after a long relationship with the Church, Lisa Marie defected from Scientology. She said she hadn’t really felt connected to the religion since 2008. Her mother and her daughter are still members of the Church.

He Was Brand Loyal

Beginning in the ’50s, Elvis developed a love for cars, especially Cadillacs. His first Cadillac was a pink and white Cadillac Fleetwood Series 60.

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Photo by ANDREW HOLBROOKE/Corbis via Getty Images
Photo by ANDREW HOLBROOKE/Corbis via Getty Images

After the car was destroyed in a fire, Elvis upgraded to a newer model. The car he bought was blue with a black roof, but Elvis decided to have it repainted in a color called “Elvis Rose.” He reportedly bought over 100 Cadillacs in his life for himself and others.

Staying Out Of Europe

Even though Elvis met his wife in Germany and had fans in Europe, Elvis never toured outside of North America. He only made a few appearances outside of the US at all with a handful of shows in Canada in 1957.

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Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images
Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Elvis supposedly had a huge argument with his friend Col. Tom Parker about touring in Europe. Elvis always resented how Parker held him back from following his dreams.

Elvis’ Last Girlfriend

After Elvis’ relationship with Linda Thompson ended, he moved on to a new woman named Ginger Alden soon after. Their relationship moved rather quickly and Elvis proposed to her just two months later.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Even though Elvis did technically propose, a lot of his friends have said that he didn’t actually have any interest in getting remarried.

The Book That Eventually Killed Him

Three of Elvis’s former bodyguards published a tell-all book titled, Elvis: What Happened?. The contents of the book may have been partially true, but they mostly wrote the book to get back at Elvis for firing them.

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Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images

Elvis tried to pay them to not release the book, but they refused his offer. Elvis made it well-known that was feeling stressed about the book’s upcoming release date.

Lisa Marie Followed Her Father

Lisa Marie grew up as the daughter of “The King,” so it was pretty much inevitable that she would venture into music at some point in her life. In 2003, Lisa Marie released her debut album, To Whom It May Concern.

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Photo by Steve Morley/Redferns
Photo by Steve Morley/Redferns

It reached number 5 in the charts and it was certified gold. It appeared that Lisa Marie had Elvis’ musical genes. In 1997 Lisa Marie made a video for her song “Don’t Cry Daddy” that included her late father’s vocals.

Priscilla’s Botched Surgery

Priscilla was feeling a lot of pressure to maintain her appearance as she aged. She decided to undergo various cosmetic procedures. In 2008, she fell victim to a scam and received surgery from an unlicensed physician.

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Photo by Paul Archuleta/Getty Images
Photo by Paul Archuleta/Getty Images

Dr. Daniel Serrano injected silicone into her face but the chemicals he used were not medical grade. Priscilla was paying a reported $300 to $500 per injection. Later, Dr. Serrano was arrested by the federal government.

Priscilla Dated Tom Jones

Tom Jones struck up a romance with Priscilla Presley. They had been friends for decades and Tom and Elvis were close friends. Tom said of the date and his late friend, “I really don’t know how Elvis would feel about us having dinner together. He probably wouldn’t be too sure,”

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Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

The romance between Tom and Priscilla didn’t last long, but the two still remain friends.

He Walked Out On Brian Wilson

Beach Boys singer Brian Wilson wanted to impress Elvis when they met in the mid-’70s, but he ended up doing just the opposite. Wilson knew that Elvis liked karate, so he planned to show off some of his moves.

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Photo by Roberto Ricciuti/Redferns
Photo by Roberto Ricciuti/Redferns

Wilson decided that it would be a good idea to jump at Elvis and yell, “HI-YAH” while doing some karate chops. Elvis told him not to do that, but Wilson insisted on doing it again. Elvis just walked out of the room.

Lover Of Comedy, Hater Of Johnny Carson

Elvis was a huge fan of comedy. He would frequently quote entire comedy monologues. For a while, Elvis was also a fan of The Tonight Show With Johnny Carson.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

In 1975, Carson made a joke about Elvis being “fat and 40” on his 40th birthday which Elvis was quite offended by. He stopped watching the show entirely after that incident and refused to appear on the show again.

The Fake Lisa Marie

Lisa Marie Presley is Elvis’ only daughter. There is nobody else like her in the world. A woman by the name of Lisa Johansen believes that Lisa Marie is a liar and not the real daughter of The King. She filed a $130 million suit against the Presleys claiming to be Elvis’s actual daughter.

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Photo by Jun Sato/GC Images
Photo by Jun Sato/GC Images

In 1988 she published a memoir titled I, Lisa Marie: The True Story of Elvis Presley’s Real Daughter.

Elvis Broke Down Racial Barriers

From the beginning of his career, Elvis was a singer who broke down racial barriers. He would often perform for the black community as a statement against segregation. The white conservative community didn’t approve of this kind of co-mingling.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Elvis was accepting due in part because he was so heavily influenced by black artists and African American music. He would perform at venues on “colored nights” even though most white people at the time wouldn’t have done so.

Fired From A Movie Theatre

Before Elvis became one of the most iconic pop stars in history, he worked at the Loew’s State movie theatre in Memphis. He didn’t have the job for long, though. Elvis was fired after working there for only five weeks.

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Photo by RB/Redferns
Photo by RB/Redferns

One of the other ushers was jealous of his flirtatious relationship with the girl behind the concession stands and ratted him out when she gave Elvis free candy. The future had far more in store for Elvis!

Priscilla The Actress

Elvis wouldn’t let Priscilla have a career the whole time they were married to each other. He believed that it was her job to stay at home and look after him and Lisa Marie.

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Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic
Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

Priscilla wanted to act and plenty of producers wanted to hire her, but she had to turn them all down. Priscilla was finally able to take on some acting roles. Most famously, she played Jenna Wade in the TV show Dallas for five years.

Priscilla Protected Elvis’ Legacy

Priscilla was determined to uphold the memory and legacy of her ex-husband. Priscilla hired a CEO to turn Graceland, Elvis’ estate, into a museum which became a huge success.

Priscilla Presley At The Elvis On Tour Exhibition At O2
Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty Images
Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty Images

Priscilla then became the chairwoman and president of Elvis Presley Enterprises and promised to keep that position until Lisa Marie turned 21. From Priscilla’s work and guidance, the Elvis trust grew to be worth over $100 million.

Lisa Marie’s Money

Although Lisa Marie was given plenty of money from a young age, she wasn’t always the -best at managing her finances. At one point, Lisa Marie even claimed bankruptcy.

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Photo by Michael Loccisano/WireImage
Photo by Michael Loccisano/WireImage

She also admitted that she was living rent-free as she couldn’t afford the upkeep of a house even though she got a huge monthly allowance from her father’s estate.