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The contest, held at the Mississippi–Alabama Fair and Dairy Show on October 3, 1945, was his first public performance.
The ten-year-old Presley was dressed as a cowboy; he stood on a chair to reach the microphone and sang "Old Shep". Over the following year, he received basic guitar lessons from two of his uncles and the new pastor at the family's church.
In 1968, following a seven-year break from live performances, he returned to the stage in the acclaimed television comeback special Elvis, which led to an extended Las Vegas concert residency and a string of highly profitable tours.
In 1973, Presley gave the first concert by a solo artist to be broadcast around the world, Aloha from Hawaii.
After residing for nearly a year in rooming houses, they were granted a two-bedroom apartment in the public housing complex known as the Lauderdale Courts. When his music teacher told him that he had no aptitude for singing, he brought in his guitar the next day and sang a recent hit, "Keep Them Cold Icy Fingers Off Me", in an effort to prove otherwise.
They and three other boys—including two future rockabilly pioneers, brothers Dorsey and Johnny Burnette—formed a loose musical collective that played frequently around the Courts.
He was jailed for eight months, while Gladys and Elvis moved in with relatives.
He was encouraged to enter a singing contest after impressing his schoolteacher with a rendition of Red Foley's country song "Old Shep" during morning prayers.
Accompanied by guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, Presley was a pioneer of rockabilly, an uptempo, backbeat-driven fusion of country music and rhythm and blues. Presley's first RCA single, "Heartbreak Hotel", was released in January 1956 and became a number one hit in the United States.
With a series of successful network television appearances and chart-topping records, he became the leading figure of the newly popular sound of rock and roll.