Today is the anniversary of Elvis' first release on Sun Records. The "That's Alright (Mama) / Blue Moon of Kentucky" split was released in 1954 when Elvis was 19 in Memphis, TN. While I won't deny he changed the face of rock n roll and was extremely talented, I have a friend that's always said "Theres two types of people in this world, Elvis fans and Beatles fans". So, if I have to choose, I'll take the Fab 4. They covered this song almost 10 years later in 1963...
What a lot of folks don't know is that Elvis' version was also a cover, originally recorded by late great delta blues man Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup in 1946.
Crudup, among other bluesmen at the time, had several songs redone by Elvis, Pat Boone, and many others, as society at the time didn't want whitey being "corrupted" by African American artists. An unfortunate side effect of this is these bluesmen didn't see much in the way of royalties even though their own labels like Ace Records profited from passing their music on to Sun and other labels to be redone for the white demographic. A lot of the blues artists simply stopped recording by the end of the 50's, bitter from having their profits given to cover artists and often not even receiving writing credits.
I'll take the Beatles over Elvis, but I'll take the Delta Blues over the Beatles, any day.