- Gerard Barnes remembers Elvis Presley, 40 years since musician's death
- The King and I: rare Elvis photos to go on display at Ophir Tavern
It’s been 40 years since Elvis Presley died, but his legacy still lives on through music, films, costumes, festivals and performances around the world.
A trip to Graceland
This week thousands of fans are at Graceland to remember The King and his music.
One fan is Janet Prince, who grew up in Mudgee and has travelled to the USA this month.
The ‘huge Elvis fan’ for as long as she can remember, Ms Prince said she “loved that he was such a loving, caring and generous person.”
“He is a more talented entertainer than you will ever find. There will only every be one King.”
Ms Prince said it was wonderful to see so many tribute artists keeping his music and memory alive.
Ms Prince has travelled to Gracelands six times, but this year was her first candle vigil.
“It is incredibly emotional to see all the tributes and flowers on this his 40th anniversary."
A festival will also be held in the Blue Mountains this week while the Parkes Elvis Festival, held in January to mark The King’s birthday, also draws thousands of fans each year.
Parkes Elvis Festival
The 2017 Parkes Elvis Festival, had a record 25,000 people attend over the five days. A fitting number considering it was the 25th event.
Anne and Bob Steel originally came up with the idea to hold the Parkes Elvis Festival after another quiet January in which those that could went on holidays, and those that couldn’t stayed inside out of the heat.
These days the popularity of the event, and Elvis himself, was highlighted by the distance that fans travelled for the event. From all over Australia and around the world including Portugal, Japan, France and Switzerland people travelled for the event.
Anne said Elvis’ music would live on forever.
"He was such a lovely guy, a gentleman, always well mannered, so many people have described him as ‘just a well-mannered boy and he appealed to both men and women.
“You could understand all the words to his songs and there was no limit to what he sung, from gospel, to rock to country.”
“His music is still so popular because the children of the original Elvis fans, they grew up with that music and they still appreciate it,”
As Anne celebrates her birthday on August 16, she will also remember Elvis 40 years after his death.
In 2018 the Parkes Elvis Festival will celebrate its 26th year with the theme '68 Comeback Special’, marking 50 years since the television special.
Who was Elvis
► Elvis Presley was an American actor and singer who was born on January 8, 2935 in Mississippi.
► He began his music career in 1954. In 1956 he had his first number one on the US charts with Heartbreak Hotel, and in that same year made his film debut with Love Me Tender.
► During his career Elvis starred in 33 successful films, was nominated for 14 Grammys of which he won three as well as a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.
► He has sold over one billion records and his American sales earned him gold, platinum and milti-platinum awards.
► Elvis was 11 when his parents bought him his first guitar from the Tupelo Hardware store for his birthday.
► Elvis’ favourite foods were peanut butter and bacon.
► He joined the US Army in 1958 and was officially discharged from active duty in 1960.
► On August 16, 1977 Elvis suffered a fatal heart attack aged 42.