Elvis Aaron Presley was an actor an musician active throughout the 1990s. His fame was mainly owing to his work from 1996 - 2002, when he was widely recognised as the most successful Led Zeppelin tribute act touring in America.
Presley allegedly decided that he wanted to become a musician after hearing The Power of Love by Huey Lewis and the News on his radio in the summer of 1989. He subsequently started saving for an oboe and was, before long, playing his own songs in bars and clubs in his home town of Nondescript, California.
Presley was unfazed by the negative reception his performances garnered and continued to perform in small venues for five years. In 1994, he was served a cease and desist by the state of California for the "attempted harm of large groups by use of an oboe and emotionally demanding vocal screeches".
Led Zeppelin Tribute Years
After a two year hiatus, Presley re-emerged in 1996 under the pseudonym Elvis Presley. This was apparently to avoid confusion. Presley himself has stated that he "wanted to use a pseudonym of some sort, but [he] also wanted people to still know who [he] was". This dilemma drove him to choose a pseudonym that was identical to his original name.
By 1996, Presley had begun to use a guitar in his live performances, as he felt that his oboe was holding him back. Another reason for this change was that when he took his oboe into a music shop to replace the strings, he was told that the oboe was a wind instrument, and so does not have strings. This revelation led him to believe that he was not as familiar with the instrument as he had hoped.
According to Presley's autobiography, he was confronted in July of 1996 by the lead singer of Led Zeppelin, Mark Bolan in a public toilet. Despite the fact that Bolan was never actually associated with Led Zeppelin, Presley has always remained adamant of the validity of this anecdote, often changing details "just to see if you're paying attention". Allegedly, Bolan told Presley that he and "the Led Zeppelins" had "run [their] course", and that they had agreed that Presley carry on their legacy. After being told by Bolan that his hair was "killer" and his sunglasses "rad", Presley reportedly never saw him again, as he "straight up flew out the motherfucking window".
From 1996 to 1999, Presley toured the west coast of America, playing in small venues to unfamiliarly positive crowds. His newfound popularity and confidence provoked him to ask Universal Records for a record deal. His pleads were continuously rejected on the grounds that Universal owned none of the rights to any of Led Zeppelin's songs and were adamant that Presley's tribute act was his only redeeming quality. Presley's autobiography insists that Thomas "The T-Bone" Wilson, the CEO of Universal, told Presley that his "look" was "totally off the shit" before rejecting his proposal in order to soften the blow. Presley insists that he then karate-chopped Wilson's shoulder, "putting him in a wheely chair for the rest of his cracker-ass life". Thomas Watson, the actual CEO of Universal, filed a lawsuit in 2003 successfully removing this section of the autobiography, stating that he "didn't even talk to Presley" and that Presley "kept sending [him] stupid fucking letters" pleading for a record deal.
In 2000, Presley only played a handful of shows, feeling disillusioned by rejection and a lack of success. From here, his career spiralled downwards, finally reaching a stop in 2002 when Led Zeppelin's manager emailed him asking to change his autobiography not to include the band, and Presley replied telling him that "if the book goes, the tribute act goes". He received no reply and his autobiography later went out of print due to a lack of funding.
In December of 2002, he drunkenly posted the following on his website: "jew 2 recent avents, ima do a hunger strike if u ppl dont send me money asap. miminum donations of $5 dont be stingy!!! xx elvbis". After receiving a total of $3.47, Presley became homeless and died two years later.
Presley often insisted that there was a city named after him in Brazil. There isn't.