At the peak of his career, Elvis Presley had become a sex symbol of sorts. His jet black hair, sleek clothes, then-considered-seductive dance moves, and buttery singing voice made him get a lot of attention. In particular, from his female fans.
At the time, there were countless fan clubs devoted to Elvis Presley. According to the Graceland website, Presley and his manager, Colonel Parker, would reach out to fan clubs to help spread the word on upcoming albums and performances.
Even now, Graceland will officially recognize Presley fan clubs through Elvis Presley Enterprises.
There was one point where Presley’s presence would create mass teenage hysteria. He reached stardom in record-breaking time. His fans would scream, dance, and purchase records in ways the previously conservative music world didn’t see in this way before.
This is why Priscilla Presley made one distinct choice while communicating to The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll. She had to stand out amongst his massive fanbase.
Priscilla Presley Sends Pink Letters
According to Biography.com, Priscilla Presley would send pink envelopes to make it easier for Elvis to find them amongst the huge piles of fan mail he would get.
The two had originally met when Elvis was enlisted in the U.S. Army in West Germany in 1959. The two met at a party at Elvis’ temporary home. He was immediately infatuated and even tried to impress her by singing songs like “Are You Lonesome Tonight?”
The two had then proceeded to go on four dates before he met her parents. Two years later, she had to rely on letters.
Although her parents believed he would forget her, the letters kept her close to heart and he ended up calling her in 1962 asking her to come to Los Angeles.
Priscilla Presley would become his future wife in 1967. Not before he had her change her hair, her makeup, her clothing choices, her behavior, and even had her taking sleeping pills. In many ways, Elvis Presley controlled her. She cites this as one of the reasons for the divorce as well as wanting to branch out and live her own life.
Elvis Presley Fandom
After WWII, teens had more money to spare on buying records. Eventually, television became more prominent and Presley could appeal to fans in that medium as well. Priscilla Presley still stood out to Elvis amongst millions of fans.
It is estimated that Elvis Presley has sold more than one billion records worldwide as of now. He remains the best-selling solo artist of all-time.
His fans had broken the barriers of what it means to be a fan. In many ways, it paved the way for future generations of screaming fans and fan culture.
According to Grunge, his fans once physically mobbed him backstage after a performance in Jacksonville, FL. He invited the crowd backstage, although he may have been joking, fans still charged through security.
The fans quite literally tore the shirt off his back. He was left stripped of his clothing. This is referred to as the “Presley Riot.” He reportedly did not care at all. His affection toward his fans is something Presley is well-known for.