Tuesday 22 Jul

Manmade Objects - Monuments

No one wants to be forgotten; everyone wants some sort of legacy, a mark they leave behind as they exit this life for whatever lies beyond.

And for as long as there has been death, there have been monuments — whether austere or understated, abstract or concrete, prominent or tucked away in private — erected by the ones they loved to assure that remembrance, at least for a time.
07/15/2014 | Comments 0

Admirals - Amidst the Blue

Sometimes it helps to not be very good.

Some of the best albums and artists were born out of happy accidents owed to varying degrees of early suckage — the perfect note or chord for a song found by missing the one you are aiming for, failed mimicry of an idol bearing something entirely new and great instead.

07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Kierston White - Don't Write Love Songs

The Tequila Songbirds have become just as beloved as about any group around these parts. And how could they not?

Featuring a revolving cast of the Sooner State’s most badass female performers, it’s a power hour of some of the best songwriting coming out of central Oklahoma. Sure, they might not technically be family, but they are clearly a band of sisters all the same, bonded by the same brand of whiskey running through their veins.

07/01/2014 | Comments 0

Depth & Current - Dysrhythmia

"Overproduced" is a term thrown around all too indiscreetly nowadays, usually applied when the thing that sticks out about a song or album is how it sounds rather than how it is constructed. Yet some of the most compelling albums ever crafted embodied a certain aesthetic that was just as skillfully and meticulously put together as any Bob Dylan or Miles Davis record — which is to say production is as crucial to our enjoyment of music as much as anything else; it's also the most overlooked.
06/24/2014 | Comments 0

Weak Knees - “IceBevo”

Indie rock has been in a good place as of late. Not caring about being cool is the new cool, and a couple of dudes on guitar, bass and drums can make catchy, earworm songs without being armed to the gills with computer software and vintage synthesizers.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Return of the King

Return of the King

Phil Bacharach January 12th, 2011

Travis LeDoyt channels Elvis, circa 1956.

Travis LeDoyt as Elvis
8 p.m. Saturday Riverwind Casino
154 West Highway 9, Norman

Travis LeDoyt wants to get something straight right away: He doesn’t think he’s Elvis Presley.

Although LeDoyt is an Elvis impersonator with an uncanny ability to sound and look like the King, he refuses to be lumped in with so many wannabes decked out in white jumpsuits and oversized sunglasses. LeDoyt is Elvis when he’s onstage. Once the houselights go up, however, the 32-year-old husband and father from Nashville, Tenn., shakes off the persona.

“I’m not trying to be Elvis. It’s a part I play,” he said. “I’ve had some guys come to my show dressed in character, and then after the show they’ll go” — here, LeDoyt affected his best Elvis vocal swagger — “‘Hey, man, how’s it going?’ It’s the weirdest thing. Some guys take it too serious. When people ask what I do for a living, I usually just say I’m a musician.”

What LeDoyt does take seriously is his Elvis tribute act, which he brings to Riverwind Casino on Saturday.

“I think it’s a nice tribute, and we’ve always had satisfied people,” said LeDoyt.

At least one fundamental difference separates him from the bulk of Presley practitioners. Most channel the Elvis of the late 1960s and early ’70s, when he spiraled into Vegas-styled self-parody. By contrast, LeDoyt impersonates the Elvis of the mid-1950s, when he snarled and gyrated his way into the national consciousness.

That’s the Elvis who fired LeDoyt’s imagination back in high school.

“I saw a documentary special on Elvis in the ’50s, and man, his look, his sound, everything — it was captivating,” LeDoyt said.

He went out and bought a collection of Elvis’ early hits. LeDoyt sang along constantly to “That’s All Right,” “Good Rockin’ Tonight” and others.

“The next thing I know, my dad bought me a karaoke machine,” he said. “The only stuff he’d heard me sing was Elvis, so he bought me Elvis karaoke tapes. And then I just started.”

LeDoyt discovered a natural talent for singing. It didn’t hurt, either, that he bore a physical resemblance. In his senior year, LeDoyt dyed his hair black; his classmates called him “Trelvis.”

An appearance in a high school talent show led to a gig in his Massachusetts hometown, and before LeDoyt knew it, he had become a professional Elvis impersonator.

That was 10 years ago. Since then, he has performed at casinos, festivals and fairs across the nation, and to audiences as far away as China and Chile.

“We’ve had people that were at (Presley) concerts at that time pay me a big compliment when they come up and say, ‘You really took me back,’” he said. “Or we get people who say, ‘I wasn’t really that into Elvis before, but now we really like it.’ And that’s a great compliment.”

Among the best responses he’s had anywhere, however, are audiences at Riverwind. LeDoyt has played there a number of times.

“We always look forward to it,” he said. “They have the best sound company and the craziest audience. The last time I went out there, the ladies were just crazy, jumping out of their seats.”

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