Sunday, January 8, 2012


Had Elvis lived, he would celebrate his 77th birthday on January 8. But his spirit lives on, in some ways bigger than ever. How else do you explain the hundreds of fan clubs, the Sirius XM satellite channel dedicated solely to his songbook and the impersonators who seek any occasion, appropriate or not, to swaddle themselves in chest hair-revealing jumpsuits and chow down on peanut butter and banana sandwiches, all in the name of tribute?

The folks at Elvis Presley Enterprises predict 2012 will be one of the biggest years in the world of Elvis. About 75,000 fans are expected to visit Graceland this week to participate in a celebration of his Elvis-ness, including the new exhibit, “Elvis on Tour,” which opened there this week.

Yes, there is still plenty of love for the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

Every year Elvis Presley Enterprises, the far-reaching organization that manages Graceland and licensing for all things Elvis, holds Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contests around the world, culminating in a showdown in Memphis during Elvis Week in August. This year, the four finalists star in this 27-city touring show, dubbed a “theatrical concert experience” by the gang at EPE.

This year’s team – Bill Cherry, Ben Klein, Kevin Mills and Victor Trevino Jr. – will each represent Elvis during a different stage of his career: the ‘50s, the ‘60s, his movie career and his concert years.

Along with the rotating Elvi, the show also features a live band, back-up singers, dancers, a sultry Ann-Margret tribute artist (Lori Russo) and multimedia elements for added dazzle. Curiosity seekers can catch a glimpse of what is planned at

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