Thankyaverramuch

30 years after Elvis' death, the homages remain a hunka hunka burnin' love.

Many years ago, I made a trip to Graceland with the Joe Ely Band. It was before Graceland was open to the public so we stood around the graves, chatted up Uncle Vester Presley at the front gates, and wasted money on Elvis hotdogs at the Elvis Presley Eternal Flame souvenir shop across Elvis Presley Boulevard. TCB, baby!

Not long after, I tagged behind the Ely band to a gig in Corpus Christi. We stopped at a convenience store in Mathis, Texas on the way back and a poster caught my eye. “Duke Presley,” it read. A cousin of Elvis’, the poster boasted, along with a few other gassy claims. I stole the poster and when I got back to the Chronicle, shared it with Carolyn Phillips in our sales department. She shared it with Ted Roddy for the first Elvis show and he used that same poster – with a few changes – for his original Graceland Revue shows.

I’ve sat through more than a few of Roddy’s Elvis tributes at the Continental (one of which takes place Saturday). I’ve hoisted many a beer during “Viva Las Vegas” and coughed through the now-defunct Totally Smokin’ shows. I’ve oohed and aahed to Shaun Young’s Blue Moon Boys, swooned to Roddy’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” entrance, and sung loudly to “Suspicious Minds.” I’ve also seen Elvis tribute bands and imitators in places as far away as Hawaii and there’s no question that Ted Roddy is one of the best. His rich baritone is Elvis-like but he doesn’t seek to slavishly ape the King, just pay serious homage. And that’s good enough for me.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Elvis
Viva Las Vegas
Viva Las Vegas
Behind the scenes of Cirque du Soleil's Viva Elvis and Love

Austin Powell, Feb. 24, 2010

More by Margaret Moser
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?

March 3, 2017

Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
A look back at illustrated album covers old and new

July 29, 2016

KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Elvis, Ted Roddy, Shaun Young

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle