The King is gone but will never be forgotten. 79 years ago today a poor boy with a funny name was born in Tupelo, Mississippi. That boy was Elvis Aaron Presley and he would go on to not only change the course of popular music, but of the world itself. He helped bring the sound of African-American rhythm & blues into the suburban confines of white America, in no small way helping to create the sound and very idea of rock n’roll and setting nascent, teenage minds afire. Nearly no significant rocker of the past 50 + years has not cited him as an inspiration, from The Beatles to Led Zeppelin, from U2 to Green Day. His influence on hard rock and even heavy metal lingers on its sense of dangerous sexuality and patented, anti-authoritarian sneer as heard in the following 15 hard rocking Elvis covers. Now, despite his stylistic innovations and impact, most Elvis Presley covers are actually covers of songs Elvis covered as he wasn’t much of a songwriter. However, there’s no doubting, he was The King Of Rock N’ Roll. All hail the King.
Led Zeppelin “Let’s Have a Party”
These avowed Elvis fanatics peppered many a concert with lively covers of his songs, including this 1972 romp though this tune originally sung by rockabilly Queen, and onetime Presley paramour, Wanda Jackson.
ZZ Top “Jailhouse Rock”
The little ole band from Texas have always worn their love for rock’s roots on their sleeves and absolutely tear into this, one of Presley’s most covered tunes.