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Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Sat Jun 08, 2013 2:39 am

Legendary karate master Ed Parker became closely associated with Elvis in the 1970s. Elvis supported Parker's schools, was apparently certified for high-level black belts from him, and in fact even hired Ed as one of his on tour bodyguards in the last year of his life. Parker claims to have met Presley as early as spring 1960, although some question how much contact they had at the time.

One way Elvis would have certainly noticed Parker in the early sixties might have been through an April 1962, three-page article in Black Belt magazine on actor Nick Adams. Presley and Adams became fast friends when Elvis filmed "Love Me Tender" in August 1956 at 20th Century-Fox, and spent a reasonable amount of time hanging out that year. Adams' role in "Rebel Without A Cause" was something that Presley never tired of talking about, as he worshipped the 1955 drama's star, the late James Dean.

At the time the magazine hit the newsstands, Adams had recently completed a two-season run starring as "Johnny Yuma" in ABC-TV's "The Rebel," and it seems karate was filling his time until his next big break. And who do we see teaching "rugged Nick"? None other than Ed Parker! According to the article, Parker notes that "Nick's got the drive" to excel at the art. Black Belt concludes by praising the young actor as "an ambassador of an ancient art -- Karate." Sound kind of familiar? It seems Ed Parker knew how to make stars feel at home in his dojo.

Think Elvis read this while on a break at home in Memphis? You bet he did!

Here is the entire piece:



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Black Belt - April 1962



Sadly, Nick would score just one more starring TV role, in 1962's short-lived "Saints and Sinners" on NBC, and end up taking acting roles in film or TV wherever possible, regardless of quality. He would pass away in 1968, at the age of 36.
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Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Sat Jun 08, 2013 9:54 am

Interesting find

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Fri Jun 14, 2013 1:31 am

zolderopruiming1 wrote:Interesting find


Thanks.

What intrigued me, beyond the immediate and obvious Presley connections, is how Ed Parker understood he would go a lot farther in his chosen career if he associated with famous clients.

Clearly, the Elvis connection later on paid dividends.

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Fri Jun 14, 2013 2:28 am

Nice read Doc,thanks.


norrie

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Fri Jun 14, 2013 4:05 am

That was an interesting read and I have always wondered about his career and what happen to him,so i just finished reading about him on Wiki and i wish i did not read it at all because it get's very depressing and disturbing about his association with Elvis and James Dean,even thou i do not believe what was written.http://www.quickiwiki.com/en/Nick_Adams_(actor)

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:35 am

norrie wrote:Nice read Doc,thanks.


norrie


My pleasure!

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:48 pm

Clay wrote:That was an interesting read and I have always wondered about his career and what happen to him,so i just finished reading about him on Wiki and i wish i did not read it at all because it get's very depressing and disturbing about his association with Elvis and James Dean,even thou i do not believe what was written.http://www.quickiwiki.com/en/Nick_Adams_(actor)


There's nothing too awful on that page about Adams. His story, hugely ambitious, reasonably talented person goes to Hollywood to make a career, is shared by many actors, then and now. Who he did or did not sleep with is irrelevant.

Again, what was striking about this 1962 magazine article was seeing how Ed Parker used celebrity to promote his art and career, and how both he and Nick Adams had a direct connection to Elvis Presley.

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Mon Jun 17, 2013 10:24 pm

Thanks doc, good find. I do believe tho that Parker genuinely cared about Elvis. At least that how it comes across on screen.

Re: Ed Parker --> The Nick Adams Connection !

Wed Jun 19, 2013 10:02 am

epf wrote:Thanks doc, good find. I do believe tho that Parker genuinely cared about Elvis. At least that how it comes across on screen.


Well, Parker's book, Inside Elvis, published in 1978 was extremely ... protective.

Thanks for the kind words.