A birthday bash suitable for a King.Byline: Lewis Taylor The Register-Guard
Transelvistite - a 6-1, cross-dressing hunk-a-hunk of burning love - will make his/her Eugene debut Saturday at the Elvis birthday celebration, Night of the Living Elvis.
"I look pretty darn much like a chick, but I certainly don't sound like one," Transelvistite said, speaking - in a deep voice - from Las Vegas Las Vegas (läs vā`gəs), city (1990 pop. 258,295), seat of Clark co., S Nev.; inc. 1911. It is the largest city in Nevada and the center of one of the fastest-growing urban areas in the United States. .
When he's not donning prosthetic pros·thet·ic
1. Serving as or relating to a prosthesis.
2. Of or relating to prosthetics.
serving as a substitute; pertaining to prostheses or to prosthetics. breasts and playing the role of a guy playing a gal playing Elvis, Transelvistite goes by the name Eugene Kirk and works as an activities director at an elder-care facility in Vegas.
But put him in a flashy costume like the one he'll wear on Saturday (`It's basically a form-fitting and girly girl·y
Variant of girlie. version of Elvis's famous jumpsuit," he says), and Kirk becomes a different person.
"I have two great loves in the world," he says. "One is Elvis and one is cross-dressing. And I figured, `What the hey, let's bring them together and see what happens.' '
Kirk's character is only one element of the Night of the Living Elvis, an event that has been happening off and on in Eugene, Portland and Seattle for 15 years. The show marks the Jan. 8 birthday of Elvis, who would have turned 69 this year.
At Saturday's event, several impersonators will show up to sing like the King, fronting the Elvis-inspired Memphis Mafia The Memphis Mafia was the nickname for a group of friends, associates, employees and "yes-men" whose main function was to be around Elvis Presley from 1956 until he died. Several filled practical roles in the singer's life. band. The bill includes longtime impersonator Dennis Fitzgerald, former Eugene resident Stephen Whitener whit·en
tr. & intr.v. whit·ened, whit·en·ing, whit·ens
To make or become white or whiter, especially by bleaching.
whit , Hawaiian Elvis Tom Heinl and first-time Presleys Seth and Zack Sawyer from the rock band the Sawyer Family.
"I'm definitely (going with) the early (Elvis) look," Seth Sawyer says. "I don't think I'll be able to pull off the whole white jumpsuit thing.
`I'm hoping nobody's got (the song) `Hound Dog' yet, 'cause that's the one that I want to do."
Sawyer says his "good hair" qualifies him to play the part of the King. Although he's never done it before, he has played Elvis covers with his band, including the appropriately Northwestern "I Don't Care
"Don't Care" is a 1994 (see 1994 in music) single by American death metal band Obituary. If the Sun Don't Shine."
Autumn Depoe (aka "Belle-Vis") last year became the first female Elvis to join the Eugene show. She returns with her red cape and black jumpsuit for a set that will include covers of "Rubbernecking" and "Kiss Me Quick."
Along with the band, she'll be accompanied by a quartet of backup singers and a tambourine tambourine (tăm'bərēn`), musical instrument of the percussion family, having a narrow circular frame and a single parchment drumhead, with metal plates or jingles set in the frame. player.
"I'd always wondered why there were no girls up there," says Depoe, the host of the KWVA KWVA Korean War Veterans Association (British Columbia, Canada) radio show "The Grasshopper grasshopper, name applied to almost 9,000 different species of singing, jumping insects in two families of the order Orthoptera. Grasshoppers are long, slender, winged insects with powerful hind legs and strong mandibles, or mouthparts, adapted for chewing. Unit." "It seemed like a real boys' club, so I decided to crash it."
Night of the Living Elvis veteran Pete Christie will step back into his gold-encrusted black jumpsuit. Christie attended the event when it started in 1989 at Max's Tavern and hasn't missed a year since. He'll sing "Burning Love," "Suspicious Minds" and other Elvis classics.
Each of the featured Elvi will get a shot at performing several Elvis songs with the Memphis Mafia, which features guitarist John Barley, keyboardist Dustin Lanker, bassist Dan Schmid and drummer Dave Fitzgerald Dave Fitzgerald (b. February, 1951) is a woodwind player who plays saxophones (soprano, alto, tenor), flutes, whistles and clarinet. With Dave Bainbridge he co-founded the influential Christian progressive and Celtic folk themed band Iona. .
Although it's not a contest, the event promises to inspire some healthy competition between performers seeking to put their best spin on the King.
The Night of the Living Elvis celebration has spread beyond Eugene and now includes stops in Portland and Seattle, where it has been particularly well- received. Almost always a sellout at Seattle's 500-capacity Crocodile Club The Crocodile Club was a group of Members of the European Parliament that favoured greater European integration. The group was founded in 1980, and named after the restaurant in Strasbourg, France at which its founders initially met. (owned by R.E.M.'s Peter Buck For New Zealand Maori leader and academic, see .
Peter Lawrence Buck (born 6 December, 1956 in Berkeley, California) is the guitarist and co-founder, along with Bill Berry, Mike Mills, and Michael Stipe of the alternative rock band R.E.M.. He is the oldest member of the band. and his wife, Stephanie Dorgan), last year the event was relocated to the spacious Sky Church inside the Experience Music Project museum.
Barley, the Memphis Mafia guitarist, has been involved in Night of the Living Elvis every year since it started. He says the show has survived for many of the same reasons that Presley has enduring appeal as a cultural icon A cultural icon is an object or person which is distinctive to, or particularly representative of, a specific culture. An example is the bowler hat which could be considered an English cultural icon. Others include tea, The Beatles and association football. .
"It's a lot of fun. And I think, mainly, it's just that a lot of people appreciate some aspect or another of Elvis," Barley says. "He's been dead for almost 30 years, and he's still having hit records."
Last year, after several years of not being produced in Eugene, the Night of the Living Elvis returned to town. Although the local event is not quite as big as the bloated spectacle that happens in the big cities to the north, it still draws a crowd.
Along with the usual skinny Elvis and fat Elvis characters, previous impersonators have played punk Elvis, drunk Elvis, chicken-eating Elvis and Irish Elvis.
"There's a lot to like about the guy," Barley says. "He got a little wacky for a while, but he pretty much is the one who invented the whole rock 'n' roll rock 'n' roll: see rock music. thing. He came up with the music, he had a rock 'n' roll crib, he was the original rock star.
`Plus, he could really sing."
Lewis Taylor can be reached at 338-2512 or email@example.com.
Night of the Living Elvis
What: Elvis impersonators celebrate the birth of the King
When: 9:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: John Henry's, 77 W. Broadway
How much: $10
Also: The Night of the Living Elvis plays on Sunday at Portland's White Eagle Saloon and today at Seattle's Experience Music Project
Meet the Elvi, clockwise from top left: Pete Christie, Zack Sawyer, Autumn Depoe and Seth Sawyer. Transelvestite, aka Eugene Kirk of Las Vegas, is among the Elvis impersonators who will celebrate all things Presley Saturday night at John Henry's.