One Elvis Tribute Artist Has East Texas Connection - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

6/22/07-Longview

One Elvis Tribute Artist Has East Texas Connection

It's the ultimate tribute to Elvis and it's in Longview this weekend. One of the contestants coming to portray the King says he has many memories of growing up and listening to Elvis right here in East Texas.  

Johnny Thompson is used to people staring and accidentally calling him Elvis. That's because for the past 14 years, he's actually made a career out of being the King.  

"I just try to capture Elvis as best as I can on stage. I want people to walk out and go 'wow, that's what it was like to see Elvis, that's what it was like to experience one of his concerts'," Johnny said.

He's one of 18 Elvis Tribute Artists in town for the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest.  He says it's a contest he's prepared for his whole career by studying hundreds of hours of Elvis performances.

"Just getting down the motions, the walk, the talk, the moves, everything," Johnny explains.

Johnny says he's glad to be back in East Texas where he attended Kilgore College and his father still lives here.

"When I went to East Texas to visit with my father, he always had Elvis movies, he always had Elvis movies and records laying around and stuff. So I always had a love for Elvis," he says.

But Johnny says he never thought one day he'd be living in Las Vegas, playing the King and traveling all over the world. 

"My love for Elvis, and being able to sing his music and sound like him, it just kind of fell into place I guess."

The contest starts Saturday at one o'clock at TG Field Auditorium on Second Street in Longview. Tickets are 25 dollars at the door and all the proceeds go to Neal McCoy's East Texas Angel Network.

Tracy Watler/Reporting: tracy@kltv.com

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