In Memphis, on the places of Elvis and soul music – In the World

(by Gina Di Meo) (ANSA) – MEMPHIS, 24 MAY – Music is in the air in Memphis. The city of Tennessee on the banks of the Mississippi River, whose name derives from the homonymous capital of the Ancient Egyptian Kingdom, is not only a destination for tourists for its attractions but also a place of pilgrimage for music lovers.

Memphis is synonymous with Graceland and therefore Elvis Presley but also the city where artists such as BB King, Johnny Cash, Aretha Franklin, Jerry Lee Lewis, Al Green, Muddy Waters, Tina Turner were born, raised or started their careers here. , Otis Redding, Justin Timberlake, just to name a few.

Elvis’ places are definitely a must see for anyone visiting Memphis. The starting point is Graceland, among other things the second most famous and visited residence in the United States after the White House. The king bought it in 1957 and it is also the place where he was found dead in 1977.

Only some areas are open to the public also in respect of the wishes of Elvis who kept his privacy. The famous and visible spaces are the ‘TV room’ in the basement where the artist often entertained himself while also watching three televisions at a time, the ‘gold room’, where the gold discs and numerous awards are exhibited, the ‘ music room ‘.

Elvis himself also had a ‘garden of meditation’ built, where his parents Gladys and Vernon and his grandmother are now buried in addition to him. A small plaque also commemorates Elvis’ twin brother, Jesse Garon, who died at birth.

This year, August 16, marks the 45th anniversary of his death and Graceland, which among other things celebrates its 40th year of opening to the public, has organized various initiatives and exhibitions, including ‘Graceland: Welcome to My World ‘and’ Dear Elvis’. While Cannes pays tribute to him with the biopic “ Elvis ” signed by Baz Luhrmann which will also see the Maneskins on their debut in the world of cinema parading on the red carpet of the Montee des Marches. They are the version of the iconic IF I CAN DREAM, the song they already sing for the soundtrack of Luhrmann’s film which will be released only in cinemas from 22 June.

After honoring Elvis’ memory, the next stop is Beale Street, which stands for music (especially Blues) as Broadway in New York stands for theater. This is where Louis Armstrong, Muddy Waters, Albert King, Memphis Minnie, B.

B. King, Rufus Thomas, Rosco Gordon and other blues and jazz legends and helped develop the style known as Memphis Blues. Beale Street is a nearly three-kilometer strip teeming with restaurants and clubs, including BB King’s Blues Club.

Memphis is also home to the historic ‘Sun Studio’ recording studio where in 1954 an unknown Elvis Presley overcame his shyness, picked up a microphone and sang a whole new version of That’s Alright, Mama. It was the birth of a new sound. One that combined country, r’n’b, folk and pop and broke the racial barrier. Elvis is a white who is perfectly at ease with black music.

Soul music is breathed instead at the Stax Museum which traces the history of the famous record label Sax Records, with its biggest star, Otis Redding, still considered one of the greatest singers of all time. At Stax there is the story of the pioneers of music who overcame racial and socio-economic barriers to create a genre that changed the cultural nature of the world, the so-called ‘soul music’.

The queen of soul music, Aretha Franklin, was also born in Memphis. Here is still the house where she lived before the family moved to Detroit.

Not just music, Memphis is also where civil rights battles took place. And it is also here that the reverend Martin Luther King jr was killed. It was April 4, 1968 when the African American activist coming out on the balcony of room 306 on the second floor of the Lorraine motel was hit by a shotgun in the head.

And again the city is home to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. It is a kind of miracle place for children with serious illnesses who receive treatment completely free of charge.

In addition to music and history, Memphis is also a vibrant place from a lifestyle and culinary standpoint. An eclectic neighborhood for the mix of restaurants, bars and shops is Cooper-Young, very similar in vitality to Williamsburg or Bushwick in New York.

Among the most iconic restaurants, at ‘The Four Way’ still serves the soul food that delighted the palates of Martin Luther King, Jr, Elvis Presley and Drake, mentee Arcade Restaurant boasts the Elvis Booth, the table where you usually Elvis sat down to breakfast and used to eat ‘fried peanut butter’ n ‘banana sandwich’, a sandwich with banana and peanut butter. (ANSA).

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