Harry Hammond managed to photograph Elvis Presley on the only occasion he set foot on British soil. Elvis was on his way home to America in 1960 after serving his two year US Army conscription in Germany, and on the stopover at Prestwick airport he gave this press conference.
Elvis is an icon, and could be called the ‘creator’ of rock ’n’ roll. Hailed as the ‘white singer with the black voice’, his fusion of white country and black blues music ushered in a whole new sound which came to dominate the popular music world. Preachers denounced his hip-swinging movements as obscene, but they were drowned out amongst the frenzied screams of teenage girls, and had almost no impact on Elvis’s vast popularity. Although he died, aged 42, in 1977, his records continue to sell. It is estimated that total sales worldwide exceed 1 billion units. Numbers can’t tell the whole story though. Just go and listen to some of his countless hits: ‘Heartbreak Hotel’, ‘Hound Dog’, ‘Love Me Tender’ amongst them - and hear just why he goes on selling.