Elvis Presley’s manager Colonel Parker ‘held King’s career back’ says Memphis Mafia member

Elvis Presley’s manager Colonel Parker ‘held King’s career back’ says Memphis Mafia member


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Elvis Presley is the most successful solo music artist of all time, but could he have made it there without his Machiavellian manager Colonel Tom Parker? The former carnival worker was described by Tom Hanks, who is playing him in the Elvis biopic this summer, as both a genius and a scoundrel. The Dutch-born businessman, who died 25 years ago today, oversaw The King’s rise as a rock singer but also a Hollywood star. He even made sure that his client wouldn’t lose appeal during his two years in the army with careful marketing strategies.

However, as time went by, The Colonel was uncompromising and would walk away from deals that could have been great opportunities for Elvis.

These included the chance to star in Oscar-winning movies True Grit with John Wayne and A Star Is Born with Barbra Streisand.

The King may have been making lots of poor musical rom-coms, but from Parker’s business point of view, the system was working.

On top of this, Elvis was keen to perform abroad, but only ever made it over the border to Canada since his manager was an illegal immigrant who couldn’t risk leaving the country for the world tour.

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