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Elvis Presley is a cultural icon, widely considered to be one of the greatest singers and entertainers who ever lived. Although Presley passed away more than three decades ago, his influence lives on — both in the music that he released and in the legends that he inspired.

While Presley’s fans love the rock star for the way that he interacted with his audience — and for his alleged generosity when it came to expensive gifts — there’s no doubt that he had some eccentricities as well. In fact, according to several reports, Presley was a huge gun aficionado and when it came time to target practice, he had specific preferences. 

How did Elvis Presley become a star?

Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley | RB/Redferns

Presley was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, in 1935. Presley, as many fans know, had a twin brother, but sadly, his brother was delivered stillborn. Perhaps because of this early loss, Presley and his parents became exceptionally close — and Presley formed an especially tight bond with his mother, Gladys Love.

As a little boy, Presley found himself drawn to music, and after being gifted a guitar, he started to play music for friends and family members. In 1948, the Presley family moved to Tennessee. Elvis Presley began pursuing music more seriously, performing at various events at venues.

In 1953, Presley started recording at the famous Sun Records, attracting the attention of record executives. Over the next few years, Presley’s star started to rise, and by 1956, young Presley had made a name for himself on the Nashville music scene. 

Elvis Presley had an affinity for guns

In 1956, Presley made his debut in Hollywood, appearing in the movie Love Me Tender. He quickly became a superstar, with fans raving about his unique style and incredible singing voice.

Although Presley was drafted into military service in 1958, his time in the service didn’t dim his popularity with fans. At the height of his fame, Presley purchased an extravagant home in Memphis, Tennessee, which he named Graceland. At Graceland, Presley felt free to be himself and to indulge in his hobbies and vices. 

As Presley’s fame grew, so too did his obsession with various expensive toys and collectibles. Most notoriously, Presley was a devotee of guns. Reportedly, he would not only buy guns for himself but as gifts for other people as well — giving up to 30 guns as gifts in the year 1970 alone.

Presley didn’t just like to let his gun collection sit and collect dust, however. The singer would indulge in frequent target practice, and according to a report by Mental Floss, especially liked to do so by his Graceland pool. 

What was Elvis Presley’s weird target practice habit?


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As reported by Mental Floss, Presley had a long-running habit of shooting at household appliances and other benign household items. He built a firing range at Graceland, where he would often welcome friends and fellow industry power players.

However, he also liked to play target practice with random things -in particular, Presley liked to sit by his pool at his home in Graceland and shoot light bulbs as they floated in the water. Mental Floss also reports that Presley liked to snack on watermelon during these target practice sessions.

Sadly, the final years of Presley’s life were full of illness and paranoia. The famed singer passed away in 1977, at the age of only forty-two. Still, his fans remember him for the way he was in his prime, a talented singer full of energy and poise.