The popularity of Elvis Presley was accented today in Longview with the ultimate Elvis tribute artist contest. Eighteen contestants took the stage at T.G. Field Auditorium for the Love Me Tender in East Texas regional Elvis competition.
"I've been doing him about three or four years now," said Florida Elvis Impersonator Al Joslin. "I got to like him when I was a senior in high school. Once I heard his music I couldn't get enough of it."
"Of course, you have to have a good voice," said Oklahoma Elvis Impersonator Tim Keef. "You have to sound somewhat like Elvis, and then you also have decent hair or a decent hairpiece. Sanctioned by Elvis Presley Enterprises, there were 18 competitors showing various stages in Elvis life. Among them, Army Elvis, On Tour Elvis, Teen Elvis and Las Vegas Elvis. Some weren't even born before Elvis passed away. Contestants were judged on vocals, authentic appearance, performance, and overall tribute to Elvis.
"If you're big fan of Elvis, you're going to try to put your whole heart and soul into the show," said Keef. His legacy has the ultimate complement. As long as his memory lives, there will be those who want to be Elvis.
The winner will go on to the national competition in Memphis later this year. Proceeds from the event go to Neal McCoy's East Texas Angel Network.