ELVIS’ CHILDHOOD CHURCH

The actual building where the Presley family attended church services has been moved to the Elvis Presley Birthplace Complex for visitors to see and enjoy. It was here that Elvis was first exposed to the rich, Southern gospel that became a staple of his musical repertoire. According to Assembly of God minister, Brother Frank Smith, Elvis was fascinated with music and the prospect of learning to play the guitar. Brother Frank taught Elvis how to make D, A, and E chords…all he needed to play “Ole Shep”. Today, visitors can experience the Assembly of God Pentecostal services of the 1940s through a multimedia presentation. The plain, humble, wood-framed structure will greatly contrast with the lively and intense nature of the sermons and the music. Guests will experience the preacher walking about, the choir filled with the spirit, and the congregation swaying to the rhythm of inspiring praises. Elvis never realized his dream of becoming a member of the Statesmen or the Blackwood Brothers gospel quartets, yet throughout the rest of his life, Elvis recorded many of the beloved songs of his youth, the emotional and uplifting music of the church.

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