Steve Pineo’s Elvis Show (2007-present)
The Elvis show is, along with my Christmas show, my biggest success. I outlined the origins of the Elvis Show in the Archives section, so I thought I could talk about what I like about the show. The best part about the Elvis Show is performing Elvis’s trademark songs as faithfully as possible. Although I’m loathe to admit it,I’m a bit of a mimic. I can capture the tone and timbre of a singer’s voice in great detail. Billy was a great mimic, as was Merle Haggard. Part of learning your own vocal style is to try to learn other’s vocal styles. I resisted doing Elvis songs for a long time because of the negative stigma of Elvis impersonators. In fact, it’s a miracle that I even do an Elvis tribute at all after my one experience working with Elvis impersonators.
Back in the early 90’s John Gray invited me to get on board with show called Elvis! Elvis! Elvis! He had been hired to play bass and they needed a guitarist/band leader. I put together a band, made learning tapes of the tunes, organized a couple of rehearsals and was ready to go for five nights of Elvis at the lovely and luxurious Body Shop(it was a “gentleman’s Club”). There were supposed to be three Elvises;fifties, sixties and seventies. Right before the first show started, we found out that the 50’s Elvis had mysteriously dropped out and the seventies Elvis would handle his set. As the week went on, the shows went well but seventies Elvis sure was living it up. The tables were absolutely brimming over with drinks that he’d bought for his friends. At the end of the last show, seventies Elvis announced that we could get our cheque from the booking agent. I was very young and naive, but I knew what was happening. We were about to get ripped off. We called the police, called the agent who booked our show and waited it out, but we never got paid a cent. I couldn’t believe they could do that to us after a week of good work and big crowds, but you’ve got to hate the singer and not the song!
I never did lose my love for Elvis. Billy did “All Shook Up”, “One Night With You”, “Return to Sender” and “Little Sister” always to thunderous applause. The biggest reaction we get in our Elvis show is when I hit the high note in “It’s Now Or Never” but the show always delivers. Singing “Peace in the Valley” is always a thrill. We’ll keep doing the Elvis show as long as we’re able to, because I know you’ll you’ll always want us to.