Elvis is in the building (or, more precisely, the Barn)
THE WOODLANDS, TX – The King is alive and well and ready to hit Dosey Doe - The Big Barn this Friday evening.
Kraig Parker, one of the top Elvis tribute performers, hits The Woodlands this Friday with Graceland and aplomb
Fort Worth resident Kraig Parker has spent the past 22 years honing the skills necessary to be one of the top Elvis Presley tribute performers (what we once upon a time called “Elvis impersonators”). After missing the past couple of years due to COVID-related rescheduling, Parker is finally giving the latest of about a dozen performances at Dosey Doe.
When asked about Presley’s endurance in the music zeitgeist more than four decades after the icon’s death in 1977, Parker replied, “I don’t think anyone can fully explain his continued popularity. It was once in a lifetime; he was the master of crossover, from white and black, from rock to country to blues… I like to say he was ‘electric,’ and you can’t stop electricity. Elvis is still sparking today.”
Despite what you may see in the movies or street corners or bachelorette parties, being an Elvis tribute artist is actually a serious business not to be taken lightly. Parker feels – along with many of his fellow artists – that there is a certain responsibility in assuming the mantle of the King of Graceland.
Asked about his decision to choose this life, Parker replied, “It’s an utter blessing. It’s been more fun than I ever could have dreamed. It’s my honor to bring what I call ‘Elvis to the Max’ at my shows, whether they’re solo performances or with my amazing band. Elvis was the biggest ever icon in music, and I have the honor of recreating him on average of a couple of shows a week for these past 22 years.”
The choice to don the iconic rhinestone jumpsuit and scarf didn’t come on a whim, but it was predicated on a particular series of events.
“When I was much younger, I tried to make it in the music business,” said Parker. “Life naturally intervened; I became a dad, then got into a career. It wasn’t for many years until I hit a fork in the road.”
That fork came in the guise of a party that needed an Elvis impersonator. Parker had been a fan of the King ever since childhood. “My mother, too, was a huge Elvis fan and we played several of his 45s.” Parker’s hand shot up, and the rousing response he got from his debut performance galvanized him to make it a habit.
“I eventually entered and won an Elvis contest at the Hard Rock Cafe. That, combined with with enthusiasm I had received from my audiences made me think, ‘I may have to dabble in this.’ Over time, the requests and performances began to snowball, and it was a great day when I was finally able to quit my day job and devote my time to this.”
Today, Parker enjoys notoriety on the local, regional, national, and global stage. “Elvis was a phenomenon, and that phenomenon lives on today,” he said, referring in particular to his popular concerts and even his devoted group of followers lovingly called the “True Blues.” It won’t be a surprise if several of them hit the audience at Dosey Doe on Friday.
“I love everything about that venue; the fans, the food… it’s always treated me and my eight-piece band right,” he said of the Big Barn. Attendees will enjoy numerous favorites, including the crowd-pleasers 'Suspicious Minds,’ ‘Blue Suede Shoes,’ and Parker’s own personal fave ‘Burnin’ Love.’
The doors open at 6:00 pm, and the kitchen services between 6:00 and 7:30. Ticket prices vary depending on seating, and they do include the cost of a three-course meal. To reserve your seats, visit https://www.woodlandsonline.com/evps/evitem.cfm?evid=151246 now before the show gets sold out and you find that Elvis has, sadly, left the building.