A youth aged 17 (or, in some accounts, 15) is sent to jail for stealing $30,000 worth of automobile tires. Prior to this, he and his younger brother comprised a two-person gang that ruled their neighborhood in South Central Los Angeles. His future looks bleak until one day in jail when he hears Elvis Presley’s latest hit “It’s Now or Never” on the radio. “It was an awakening, like somebody hitting me with a baseball bat right in the face,” he later said. “When I got out, I swore to myself: never again.” After serving four months (or five, or seven, according to different sources) he is released. Rather than return to a life of crime, he begins pursuing a musical career as a singer. By the time of his death at the age of 58, he will have sold more than 100 million records worldwide.