In my opinion, Elvis Presley was the greatest musical entertainer of all time. Elvis did not just put on a great show and leave the girls breathless, he captured the essence of America and America’s God. Elvis stood up to racism before standing up against it was cool, and he put his Mama before himself! Elvis blessed others through the blessings he received, unlike so many other entertainers of today who scoff at their blessings, with complaints and contempt for their fans. No matter who I talk to that met the King, the story is the same, he was down to earth, he was like you and me, he was so nice. This is also the sentiment of the many people who had worked with Elvis, and the stories continue to this day. If you look at the bottom of my site, I give credit to the King for the defiance of his own earned title, the denial of greatness and the rejection of arrogance. When Elvis was referred to as King, he quickly rejected the title by saying, “I am not the King, Jesus Christ is the King!”
I never got to see the King in person. I always have worked tirelessly to make up for missing the era of Elvis through laser discs, DVDS, and now Blu Rays. Well, it’s time to reveal a secret. Many of us fans have invested in various types of time machines and have traveled back in time to see the King! Don’t worry, chances are, you have just such access to a machine. You can travel back in time via your feet, your truck, your car, a cab or a bus, and you can even travel back in time with a friend or a group of friends! Whether this trip takes you five minutes or several hours will depend on where you are, but rest assured, the trip will be well worth it!
If you are sitting at the Brown Theatre in Louisville Kentucky, In anticipation of the Elvis Tribute Artist Spectacular, you have made it back in time. Prepare to meet one of Elvis Presley’s former drummers, the Great D. J Fontana, who has graced the stage once again to pay tribute to the King! While you are watching D. J hit the drums again, prepare to meet some great inspirations, or should I say The Sweet Inspirations, Estelle Brown and Portia Griffin, and yes, they perform, and You Will Be Inspired! Estelle was lucky enough to perform with Elvis, but be cautious now, she will tell you she was not lucky at all, but blessed! America’s God will be captured at this show, when the Former members of the Stamps Quartet, pay tribute to the Lord, by making a joyous SOUND unto the Lord, while at the same time, honoring the memory of Elvis through majestic gospel music, the music so cherished by Elvis. Enjoy the incredible talent of Donnie Sumner, Ed Hill, Bill Baize and Larry Strickland.
The performances above will be enhanced and glorified by the Fabulous Ambassadors, the band that brings all these voices to the pinnacle of harmony! The band is directed by Dan Lentino, and if you are like me , you will instantly like this guy, in fact, all the performers bring with them the spirit of Elvis Presley’s kindness and appreciation for his fans. Amazed yet?, I am. I am traveling in my time machine again at the key board of my computer, as I experience the wonder of this show all over again in my mind!
Speaking of the wonders of the show, let me try and do the performers justice. There is Cody Ray Slaughter, man he’s good! He captures the essence of a young Elvis Presley, in such a way that has you believing your in the audience of the Ed Sullivan show! I mean this talented young man moves like Elvis, talks like Elvis, sounds like Elvis and commands a stage presence like Elvis! You also notice he drives the ladies nuts like Elvis as well, and he has the spirit of Elvis Presley’s wit and he projects a respect for others that Elvis is known for. Cody Slaughter, like Elvis, is a true entertainer. Cody gets better every year!
Elvis Tribute Artist Ryan Pelton was up next, and as always, was entertaining. Ryan brings a different twist to the King in my opinion, but still graces the stage with a great tribute. I talked to others about Ryan over the last few days, and most agree that, he seemed to be a bit alienated from a style that he had embraced in the past. Ryan is a great performer and deserves great credit and praise for his performances and many, will enjoy a style that appears some what as the man Ryan Pelton, with Elvis as his inspiration.
Do you remember what I said about going back in time. You are there. I don’t know, is it possible that Shawn Klush is Elvis? Many people say Elvis never died. Well, I will tell you this, I believe the King is gone, but Shawn Klush could reignite the conspiracy that Elvis is alive! If ever another movie is made about Elvis Presley, especially the concert years, Shawn Klush should play the part. Shawn captures Elvis Presley on every level. He is Elvis in voice, in movement, in expression, in passion, in emotion, in humor, and in grace. His performance is legendary. I just cannot put his performance into words. It is that good! I will be there every year to see the show even if Shawn is the only performer! Like an audience member shouted to him this past Sunday night, while he performed on stage, I am not sure of her exact words, but she yelled, ELVIS WOULD BE SO PROUD OF YOU! What did Shawn do? He responded like Elvis, with humor, followed by thanks and an Elvis type of humility.
I highly recommend if you are an Elvis fan you should see this show! If you are not really an Elvis fan but want to experience a great show anyway, see this show! If you are fed up with an America that is becoming alien to you, and want to travel back in time in tribute, to a performer that was an American Patriot, was not ashamed of God and gave him due respect, honored his parents, respected the law, and embraced true racial harmony and not just a cheapened version of it, than see this show! You may not want to return to the present age when this great show has ended, but you can return the following year!
One more thing: When the Stamps perform with Shawn Klush, darkness is dispelled and the light and glory of the Lord fills that stage!
To learn more visit elvisbirthdaytribute.com
Review by Mark Damon