“Before Elvis, there was nothing.” -John Lennon
1955 Elvis Presley (with Scotty Moore and Bill Black) played the first of three nights at the Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi. The base was activated in 1941 when the Air Force was still part of the Army. The Airmen's Club opened in 1951 as a recreation and entertainment center for the enlisted service personnel who were stationed at the base. The club occasionally booked dances and concerts, everything from comedy acts and magic shows to country music, which were opened to the public, as well as service personnel. The 20-yr old Elvis was booked on June 26, 1955 at the Slavonian Lodge in Biloxi with the following two nights belonging to the Airmen's Club.The Keesler local newspaper ran a preview which read:
‘A good looking youngster who has become a juke-box favorite with his 'That's Alright, Mama', and 'Blue Moon of Kentucky'. Presley is expected to repeat some of his hit tunes at the Airmen's Club show in addition to mixing up a few country tunes with some "bop" and novelty numbers.’
One must keep in mind this was in the beginning, which means the Elvis 'style' was still in the making. He had the moves all right from the onset just not to the point where they were a household word. Not yet! The rest is history as Elvis still stands as the defining figure of his time!
Long live rock 'n' roll!
And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...