The Elvis Cruise came and went and seemed to be a success. Apparently the production company they hired last year put on a train-wreck instead of an event, so the bar was set pretty low for us. I think we delivered an amazing event and set the bar where it should have been in the first place. The artists were amazing to work with and I enjoyed every second of it. This was the first event where I wasn’t dealing with artist management the whole way and I got to speak directly with the artists leading up to the event. By the time the event began I felt as if I had already known them for a while, so it made working with them all the more easy.
Basically I went from knowing nothing about Elvis and only having known a handful of songs, to knowing the people he played with and surrounded himself with, and getting to experience more of his vast catalogue. It was a great experience that I was fortunate to be a part of and I really hope we get to do this event next year.
So yeah, day 1 went by very quickly. It was a long day though. We were up for a 6:30am lobby call and shuttled over to the Port. The crew unloaded all of the backline and audio gear and threw it in the cages to be loaded onto the ship. Once we got on the ship the crew set up the Main Lounge and the Lido Deck stages (and a couple of small stages). My role on the ship for this cruise is still Production, however I’m also the Hospitality Manager and Security for the ship. Security shouldn’t be needed on here…ever. I don’t think we will have any fights among the Elvis fans. They seem like a good bunch. But yeah the Main Lounge shows last night went well with very few hiccups. Tonight should be a good show though. The TCB band (Elvis’ old backing band) is kicking the show off. I’ll let ya know how that goes. For now I’m just finishing up some office work and eating as much as possible.
So last night I met someone who is, quite possibly, the most interesting person I have ever met. That’s your teaser…now you have to read. I’ve got you hooked. I’m tricky like that. Anyway, the company I work for charters cruise ships and produces music festivals on them.
At the moment, I am sitting in the Tampa International Airport making sure the artists flying in get on the correct shuttle to the artist hotel. These however are a different brand of artists from what I’m used to working with. Why??? Because this is The Elvis Cruise. Every person I have met so far has either known Elvis, played with Elvis, or is an Elvis tribute artist. In the past two days I have met one of Elvis’ best friends, his old backing band (of which two members are in the Rock N’ Roll Hall-Of-Fame), his old music director, and some of his female movie co-stars…just to name a few. Now I have to say I do not know a whole lot about the life and music of Elvis, but over the next four days I will get to experience it second-hand…because first-hand is not possible…obviously.
Anyway, like I said, last night I met the most interesting man in the world. No, not the Dos Equis guy…but a man by the name of (Anonymous). I would list his name, but I don’t want this to pop up on Google everytime someone hits his name…much respect…so if you wanna know the name, do your homework. Keeping on…he was one of Elvis’ best friends and even worked for him for a few years. He was telling us stories last night about when he used to tour manage The Beach Boys and Billy Joel. He even once hung out with The Beatles. He has a book out that I plan on reading but his stories alone just blew my mind. He has worked with so many legends (even Diana Ross) and knowing The Beatles is enough to make you want to wet yourself on purpose. If this man is any indication of who I will meet during this trip then I’m in for a treat. A tasty, low-fat (gotta watch the figure), musical treat.
More to come…unless the ship sinks…if that happens…then Bye.