All posts with more than 3000 Hits, prior to 2008

The greatest artistic loss of Elvis's career

Poll ended at Mon Oct 09, 2006 8:21 am

The mediocre musical movies of the 60's
5
15%
Loss of a world tour
13
38%
Not getting rid of Colonel Parker when the damage begun
16
47%
 
Total votes : 34

Tue Oct 03, 2006 8:40 pm

elvis-fan wrote:
Luuk wrote:Debunking the myth of the 50% taking, the world tour Elvis wanted to do (NOT!) plus some other interesting points of view straight from the horses' mouth:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFCAclRgiiU


Interesting clip Luuk!
Too bad it doesn't play the entire interview. Any idea where I might be able to see
this whole interview... ie. DVD or was it edited as it appears for television?


The link was posted elsewhere on FECC. The guy had taped it from TV in 1993 and posted it to YouTube. So I guess it is all that was broadcasted.
I placed the link here because of the discussion about The Colonel being a bad manager. I bet a lot of artists only wished they had such a bad manager and poor career like Elvis!!!!!

Tue Oct 03, 2006 8:52 pm

Yeah, but Luuk,

Your insulting Elvis by saying that Parker could have made anyone as big as Elvis just cause you think he was a good manager.

I suppose you think that it was Parker who waved a magic wand and gave Elvis his fantastic voice.

Parker wanted Elvis to do a TV Special and sing aload of Christmas songs which goes to prove what a crap manager he really was and didnt know what the hell he was doing. . :roll:

Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:28 am

Sean wrote:Yeah, but Luuk,

Your insulting Elvis by saying that Parker could have made anyone as big as Elvis just cause you think he was a good manager.

I suppose you think that it was Parker who waved a magic wand and gave Elvis his fantastic voice.

Parker wanted Elvis to do a TV Special and sing aload of Christmas songs which goes to prove what a crap manager he really was and didnt know what the hell he was doing. . :roll:


I may be wrong, but wasn't Elvis a huge star by 1968?
So Parker came up with a wrong idea. However, Elvis did not sing a bunch of Christmas songs during that special.
You see, people come up with an idea and then it is discussed whether that idea is good or not. Next person (in this case Steve Binder) says it is better not to do a "Christmas songs" show.
In the end it was like this: Colonel Parker took care of the business side, Elvis took care of the artistic side.

And it was Parker who managed to make Elvis a worldwide star in 1956. In 1954 and most of 1955 Elvis was managed by someone else. His 3 records after That's all right sold poorly, he was performing for peanuts and was only a local talent.
I'd gladly give you the details but you can look it up yourself in books like "Elvis day by day".
From the book "Elvis A. Presley: Muziek - Mens - Mythe" by Marc Hendrickx some sales for 1954 and 1955:
That's all right: circa 20,000
Good rockin' tonight: a lot less than "That's all right"
Milkcow blues boogie: a complete flop
Baby, let's play house: top 10 regional C&W lists in Memphis, Houston, New Orleans, Richmond & St. Louis. On July 6, 1955 enters national C&W list at 15 ending reaching number 10.
Mystery train: "this week's best buy" in Billboard. Enters C&W list at 14 reaching number 1 February 15, 1956.

You see, I give credit to the manager who deserves the credit!
A lot of his actions worked in a positive way for Elvis' career, some things now are considered negative. But we are looking back, not being there at the time.

In my life I made quite a few decisions. Some can now be considered stupid, but at the time I thought they were o.k. You see, one never knows how a decision you make at a certain moment in time works out later.
If I had not gone to the youth club in 1959 I would not have heard "A big hunk o' love" and become an Elvis fan. I would not have bought all those records and probably would have invested the money and now be rich. However, Elvis' music gave me lots of happiness and many friends. I am friends with some people for 40+ years due to our mutual interest in Elvis' music.

Wed Oct 04, 2006 6:31 pm

Im not saying that Parker was a bad manager in the 50's and looking back he was the best manager he could have had but to say that if it wasnt for Parker, Elvis would have continued to sing in bars and to also say that if it wasnt for Parker this messageboard would not exist proves you dont appreciate Elvis's true talent and your comments are an insult to Elvis.

So your saying that because Elvis next few singles from Sun didnt sell well that already Elvis was a one-hit wonder?? :roll:

Singles didnt sell well in the mid-west like they did a few years later.

Pressings of the Sun singles were limited anyway.

You also claim that by 1968 Elvis was a big star, well 1967 was his worse year chart-wise and 1966 wasnt that great either.

If Elvis had done what Parker wanted him to do which was a Bing Crosby type TV Special it would have been a disaster for Elvis.

It seems that the majority of fans agree that , overall, Parker was a bad manager and Elvis should sacked him.

Wed Oct 04, 2006 7:08 pm

I think Parker did an outstanding job handling Elvis the first few years but he was expendable anytime after 61.Elvis would have benefited from someone who had his artistic credibility in mind.Having said that I dont think its fair to just blame Parker for all the mistakes.Ultimately it comes down to Elvis and him not pursuing his goals or ambitions.I hate the image of Elvis as an innocent lamb being duped along the way while on Parker's leash.For me the majority of blame rests on Elvis not Parker.
Jak

Wed Oct 04, 2006 7:44 pm

jak wrote:I think Parker did an outstanding job handling Elvis the first few years but he was expendable anytime after 61.Elvis would have benefited from someone who had his artistic credibility in mind.Having said that I dont think its fair to just blame Parker for all the mistakes.Ultimately it comes down to Elvis and him not pursuing his goals or ambitions.I hate the image of Elvis as an innocent lamb being duped along the way while on Parker's leash.For me the majority of blame rests on Elvis not Parker.
Jak


Jak,

Im not blaming Parker entirely but Luuk thinks that if it wasnt for Parker then we wouldnt have heard of Elvis.

It was Elvis's fault for not sacking him in the early 60's and getting a manager who could have done the job properly.

Yes, Elvis is to blame for what happened.

Not sacking Parker was his biggest mistake.

Wed Oct 04, 2006 7:47 pm

Having said that I dont think its fair to just blame Parker for all the mistakes.Ultimately it comes down to Elvis and him not pursuing his goals or ambitions.I hate the image of Elvis as an innocent lamb being duped along the way while on Parker's leash.For me the majority of blame rests on Elvis not Parker.


jak, a lot of members on this message board like to give Elvis a free pass. You raise a very good point. Ultimately it came down to Elvis. He is the one that could have demanded certain projects be pursued. He could have parted ways with Parker. And parting ways with Parker would have been difficult, but a new savvy manager and Elvis' attorney would have overseen the complicated financial aspects of the severing of Parker and Elvis' business relationship. Parker doesn't get a free pass by any stretch of the imagination, but Elvis wasn't soley a victim.

Wed Oct 04, 2006 8:33 pm

Sean wrote:...... but Luuk thinks that if it wasnt for Parker then we wouldnt have heard of Elvis.


No, that's not what I said.
We have heard, even in Europe in the late 1950's, of Little Richard, Buddy Holly, Everly Brothers, et cetera.
However, none of them became as big a star as Elvis, despite some of them being very talented.
When they do tour in Europe, they play in venues like Paradise or Rotown/Nighttown holding a maximum audience of 500 to 800 people and not even always sell out. Only if they appear in places like Ahoy, Rotterdam or the Amsterdam Arena (which is only 10 years old) more people (around 2,500 to 25,000) can attend. But that privilige is for stars like Robbie Williams, Bruce Springsteen, U2, et cetera.
There were no such venues in The Netherlands in the sixties or early seventies.

Wed Oct 04, 2006 9:42 pm

Luuk wrote:
Sean wrote:...... but Luuk thinks that if it wasnt for Parker then we wouldnt have heard of Elvis.


No, that's not what I said.
We have heard, even in Europe in the late 1950's, of Little Richard, Buddy Holly, Everly Brothers, et cetera.
However, none of them became as big a star as Elvis, despite some of them being very talented.
When they do tour in Europe, they play in venues like Paradise or Rotown/Nighttown holding a maximum audience of 500 to 800 people and not even always sell out. Only if they appear in places like Ahoy, Rotterdam or the Amsterdam Arena (which is only 10 years old) more people (around 2,500 to 25,000) can attend. But that privilige is for stars like Robbie Williams, Bruce Springsteen, U2, et cetera.
There were no such venues in The Netherlands in the sixties or early seventies.


I think Elvis would have been just as big if he was managed by someone else in the 50's.
I still say that Parker did a fantastic job in the 50's but you are giving all the credit to Parker and none to Elvis.

Luuk,
I respect your posts and i think we both know we are never agree on each of our own arguements.

We cant change the past.

All the best,

Sean

Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:52 pm

"Its not propaganda, its a fact.

Elvis told Billy Smith that he would have hired them back after Elvis found out they were gonna write the book.

Elvis didnt come up with the $2million cause he didnt have it.
Elvis was spending more than he was earning in the 70's.

Regardless of what you think of guys like Red and Sonny they were his friends.
They got gifts off Elvis but they never ask for them or turned them down.

Your saying that if you had the chance to go back in time and Elvis wanted you around him, your gonna turn it down? No you wouldnt.

Your saying that if Elvis wanted to buy you a house or car, your gonna turn it down and hurt his feelings? No, you wouldnt.

Elvis needed guys like Red and Sonny around him cause he had no knowledge of the outside world.

At least they tried to do something about it by hiding his medication and didnt they want to kidnap Elvis and get him cleaned up by force but his Dad wouldnt allow then to?

Elvis sacked Red and Sonny in a really nasty way and didnt even do it to there faces cause he knew he was wrong. Its understandable they were bitter.

Elvis thought he could treat people anyway he liked and he wanted 'yes' men around him.

Some say they were too heavy-handed with some of the fans but Elvis used to go on stage with upto 5 guns on him and was prepared to shoot into the audience if someone was gonna threaten him.

You have no idea what went on in Elvis's inner circle so you dont have the right to judge any of Elvis's friends"



Come on...why do you believe everything the MM guys say??!

Didn't Lisa Marie say something about "rotten in hell" when it comes to those guys?

IMO I think Sonny and Red are regretting publishing their book every day...

Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:18 am

Sean wrote:
jak wrote:I think Parker did an outstanding job handling Elvis the first few years but he was expendable anytime after 61.Elvis would have benefited from someone who had his artistic credibility in mind.Having said that I dont think its fair to just blame Parker for all the mistakes.Ultimately it comes down to Elvis and him not pursuing his goals or ambitions.I hate the image of Elvis as an innocent lamb being duped along the way while on Parker's leash.For me the majority of blame rests on Elvis not Parker.
Jak


Jak,

Im not blaming Parker entirely but Luuk thinks that if it wasnt for Parker then we wouldnt have heard of Elvis.

It was Elvis's fault for not sacking him in the early 60's and getting a manager who could have done the job properly.

Yes, Elvis is to blame for what happened.

Not sacking Parker was his biggest mistake.


I agree with you about that.We all speculate about the relationship Elvis had with the Colonel.To some point Elvis must have been reasonably satisfied with him or just to insecure to rock the boat.If Parker hadnt come along I think Elvis still would have gained noteriety and fame because he was just so unique.What Parker had was a good business sense in the beginning and he knew how to get Elvis mass exposure which launched Elvis career to heights that had never been seen before.He knew how to market Elvis in the early years and we cant take that away from him.Maybe it was a sense of loyalty that created a bond between the two.
Jak

Thu Oct 05, 2006 4:36 am

Elvis was definitely not an innocent victim. As Guralnick pointed, he had commited himself to the need for going along with some of Parker's strategies even if he didn't always love them. The publishing deal for instance was just smart business early on. And as for the movies, I can see how Elvis could see projects like "Blue Hawaii" building clout to do more serious work.

Where Elvis kind of deserves a pass is that Parker didn't educate him on any part of the business end of the industry. In fact he kept him in the dark on many circumstances. It was really as his manager, the person he entrusted to take care of that aspect of his life, Parker's job to do those things and to sometimes put everything on the backburner to realize the client's ambitions. Look at what Albert Grossman did with Bob Dylan for an example of a manager who really worked to educate his artist while not overly interfering with his work.

This is in the end what hurts any claim to Parker's status as a good manager. His client came second and you just can't have that.

He was corrupt. He never renegotiated Elvis' recording contract despite the fact that Elvis was the biggest recording artists ever any deal they gave him in 1955 was no good. By 1960, artists like Ray Charles swung a deal to own their masters. This was something that Elvis never received despite selling more records than anyone in the industry and far more than Charles. This should have been the standard for Elvis. Instead he was still receiving nearly the same album royalty in 1976 that he got in 1956. His rate on singles was far less than what stars of comparable magnitude received.

He never even included an audit provision in Elvis' RCA contracts which in Dave Marsh's phrase was a "gross invitation to larceny." Writer Clinton Heylin in his book, "Bootleg" reported the congressional testimony of record industry auditor. The auditor, who had done hundreds of audits, found that there were mistakes in nearly every audit in terms of royalties. Not once did the auditor find a mistake in favor of the artist. And Parker decided to trust RCA on this matter.

This was because Parker was in bed with RCA. The same thing happened with Elvis' Hilton Hotel contract in the 1970s. As a result the biggest selling act on the strip, the only one to actually turn a profit, was being outearned by lesser performers. Again Parker had his gambling debt and the sweetheart deals and kickbacks from hotel management to consider.

He advised poorly on his taxes, never encouraged to take on any business enterprise. When he did in Boxcar records, Parker of course wound up making more money than Elvis.

It's also worth considering that there are very few stories of Parker siding with Elvis over a studio executive.

Even his competence has to be called into question. He went to all this trouble to get Elvis the publishing deals yet didn't even keep him registered with all the houses resulting in the loss of millions in publishing revenue.

Now here is where you can blame Elvis. He should have fired him. However, one of Elvis' great virtues of personal loyalty was also one of his greatest detriments. It's really a mystery. I don't whether he didn't want to rock the boat, whether he was swayed by Parker's double talk or whether Parker had something on him (maybe Priscilla, maybe drug abuse.) I do think that Elvis had an inaccurate sense of his personal worth. The $2 million story is a good example. Elvis could have probably raised that money (especially in the mid-1970s) in a heartbeat but he just didn't know it.

Luuk's examples of record sales are misleading. Sun Records was an independent with limited distribution. They were simply not capable of breaking a major national hit record. The money realized from the Elvis sale to RCA helped Sun build up that distribution and promotion power that let them score national pop hits with Cash, Perkins and Lewis in the years to come. Another fact that must be addressed in this context is that 1956 was not 1954. The market was gradually becoming more and more friendly to rock music during that time.

The fact is that based strictly on his Sun work, Billboard ranked Elvis the #10 most promising C/W artist in 1954 and #1 in 1955.

Parker did some good work on the initial movie contracts and getting Elvis on TV and a major label. This last though is a move any manager would have made. However, Parker did a good job of making RCA's investment such that they would have to commit to promoting Elvis. He also managed to keep RCA in the 1950s out of Elvis' nose in the recording studio. And his work on mystique also deserves praise. However, he just did too much wrong, too much for himself to be praised.

Thu Oct 05, 2006 6:38 am

However, he just did too much wrong, too much for himself to be praised.


That pretty much sums up Parker's reputation in one sentence. The positive things he did for Elvis' career cannot be overlooked, however, he was a disaster in so many areas that it is impossible to define him as a quality manager.

Thu Oct 05, 2006 11:36 am

Xaykev wrote:
"Its not propaganda, its a fact.

Elvis told Billy Smith that he would have hired them back after Elvis found out they were gonna write the book.

Elvis didnt come up with the $2million cause he didnt have it.
Elvis was spending more than he was earning in the 70's.

Regardless of what you think of guys like Red and Sonny they were his friends.
They got gifts off Elvis but they never ask for them or turned them down.

Your saying that if you had the chance to go back in time and Elvis wanted you around him, your gonna turn it down? No you wouldnt.

Your saying that if Elvis wanted to buy you a house or car, your gonna turn it down and hurt his feelings? No, you wouldnt.

Elvis needed guys like Red and Sonny around him cause he had no knowledge of the outside world.

At least they tried to do something about it by hiding his medication and didnt they want to kidnap Elvis and get him cleaned up by force but his Dad wouldnt allow then to?

Elvis sacked Red and Sonny in a really nasty way and didnt even do it to there faces cause he knew he was wrong. Its understandable they were bitter.

Elvis thought he could treat people anyway he liked and he wanted 'yes' men around him.

Some say they were too heavy-handed with some of the fans but Elvis used to go on stage with upto 5 guns on him and was prepared to shoot into the audience if someone was gonna threaten him.

You have no idea what went on in Elvis's inner circle so you dont have the right to judge any of Elvis's friends"



Didn't Lisa Marie say something about "rotten in hell" when it comes to those guys?


If Lisa Maria is so denfensive of her Dad then why did she go on The Howard Stern and let him insult Elvis in front of her??

Stern said to Lisa " I wanna do you and your Mum and I wanna dig up your Dad and ask his permission". :twisted:

She just sat there and did nothing. :roll:

Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:08 pm

You can shot three bird with one stone if you can get rid of Colonel Parker... :idea: :twisted:

Wed Oct 11, 2006 6:46 am

Good points on Parker, LTB.

As an aside, I still have to take issue with the defensive nature of this "poll," however well-intended. I know this is written "in-house" among fans, but I do hope that we all can find that Elvis actually left quite a legacy of great music in each of the three decades he recorded in, if you distill it all.

This sort of defensiveness doesn't help us when we try to make a case for Elvis among non-fans. It's not long before it morphs into a notion of "why was Elvis' career such a failure?" , which is a sort of "when did you stop beating your wife" sort of trick question we shouldn't get backed into...Even well-meaning casual or curious fans or novices I've known have swallowed the "Elvis died when he went into the army" line by John Lennon and the somewhat followed by the "Rolling Stone" school of thought...

For all the brilliance of many other noted acts of rock'n'roll, most burned out rather quickly, with perhaps more "quality" per capita for a few years, but then Elvis had his '50s (all hard to argue with) and if you distill the '60s and '70s, they were amazing as well...

Wed Oct 11, 2006 11:00 am

I don't belive They couldn't go a world Tour Because of Colonel's Pasaport problems He might be immigrant but He was state register of person in US He had american wife.

He could let Elvis go without him.

There must be another problem I guess.

He had to do Pyramids concert in Egypt...

Wed Oct 11, 2006 2:08 pm

I see the movies as an artistic gain myself. They are something we are left with to enjoy or not enjoy whatever the case might be. The other two options never happened.

Art is in the eye of the beholder - why aren't Elvis movies as valid as Andy Warhols screen printings of Elvis? Pretention and snobbery being what it is some would rather write up a picture of Elvis than an Elvis picture.

Getting rid of the Colonel what year exactly? If you mean when Elvis got out of the Army - forget it. Not everything Elvis did in the 50's was great you'd have to be wearing rose tinted glasses to think that.

Greatest Loss - not making more/better films in the 70's. Not doing a world a World Tour. That might be a loss to the people that were around when Elvis was touring as far as the legacy goes what would we have left with that was different? Let me guess a fan shot footage of Elvis in Jumpsuits singing You Gave Me A moutnain etc. That happened already.


Biggest ARTISTIC loss. Elvis being kept on the road in the 70's - where did he go after ALOHA? Nowhere fast. Thats when the Colonel should have been kicked into touch.

A caring manager would have dealt with the lack of artistic challenges which lead to the boredom and pills and self destruction.

Wed Oct 11, 2006 2:12 pm

I agree Greg. I've argued here, there and everywhere that Elvis had the deepest catalogue in rock and soul. I think again Elvis' early death left us feeling kind of short changed. We feel like there should be more because he left so early. This ignores the fact that he gave us so much more than the competition already. It's actually kind of scary to think all that Elvis could have accomplished had he capitalized on every opportunity.

Erhan- I agree that there was more than Parker's immigrant status that kept Elvis from an international tour. Maybe it just got put off. Maybe Parker feared the outside influence created by access to a foreign culture on Elvis. Who knows???

Wed Oct 11, 2006 7:39 pm

He had to do Pyramids concert in Egypt...


Not a lot of specifics has ever been offered about this apparent offer. Lots of individuals loosely offer big guarantees for artists to perform. It has been going on for many decades. But, a lot of these offers end up not being real, and most of the time, they are not by "real" people. It is hard to imagine an event like this being pulled off. The security, logistics, travel, and lack of concert professionals involved would have derailed this from the start.

Maybe it just got put off. Maybe Parker feared the outside influence created by access to a foreign culture on Elvis. Who knows???


LTB, Parker may very well have feared outside influence. He always did, and that fear certainly contributed to some of his odd decisions. Parker had a comfort zone with the U.S. touring operation that was in place for Elvis during the 70's. Elvis' tours were somewhat unique for the era. Most artists toured behind albums and were on the road for lengthy periods of time. Elvis did small 2-3 week bursts of shows, many times in B-level markets. It was a sure thing, a money making machine. An international tour would have needed to have been a much larger and professional operation. There would have been a lot of new personalities involved. Ultimately, with Elvis' career taking a nosedive and with no real new challenging possibilities on the horizon, Parker knew that playing international dates was the only option left and that is why he was for the first time really looking into the possibility for 1978. He obviously didn't feel too threatened by Peter Grant. Maybe he didn't see Grant as someone who would have tried to take Elvis away? Who knows.....

Thu Oct 12, 2006 5:58 am

midnightx wrote:
Not a lot of specifics has ever been offered about this apparent offer. Lots of individuals loosely offer big guarantees for artists to perform. It has been going on for many decades. But, a lot of these offers end up not being real, and most of the time, they are not by "real" people. It is hard to imagine an event like this being pulled off. The security, logistics, travel, and lack of concert professionals involved would have derailed this from the start.


And imagine ,had he lived, such a Egyptian Elvis show in 2006.... :shock:
Lots of luck on that one...!


Elvis did small 2-3 week bursts of shows, many times in B-level markets.


As someone who spent quite a few years in the city of Binghamton, New York, I hear you. It was quite surprising when I learned that arguably the greatest entertainer of the 20th century (no argument from me!) had played this depressed, upstate factory town with a university...

He should have been in Paris or Berlin or London or Tokyo or Sydney in 1977, not Podunkville, New York. :evil:

Thu Oct 12, 2006 6:12 am

I'm sorry, Greg, but for those of us who live in "podunkville" those tour stops were heaven. We don't all live in major cities.

Had Elvis lived long enough to stop in say, Fargo, ND, a city of about 85,000,after they built the Fargodome, I can assure you it would have been sold out. People would have come from hundreds of miles around.

FYI: Bruce Springsteen and Eric Clapton have appeared there.

Thu Oct 12, 2006 6:19 am

Gregory Nolan Jr. wrote:This sort of defensiveness doesn't help us when we try to make a case for Elvis among non-fans. It's not long before it morphs into a notion of "why was Elvis' career such a failure?" , which is a sort of "when did you stop beating your wife" sort of trick question we shouldn't get backed into...


LOL @ Greg!

That was an interesting way of putting it.

I agree.

Gregory Nolan Jr. wrote:And imagine ,had he lived, such a Egyptian Elvis show in 2006.... :shock:
Lots of luck on that one...!


Elvis did small 2-3 week bursts of shows, many times in B-level markets.


As someone who spent quite a few years in the city of Binghamton, New York, I hear you. It was quite surprising when I learned that arguably the greatest entertainer of the 20th century (no argument from me!) had played this depressed, upstate factory town with a university...

He should have been in Paris or Berlin or London or Tokyo or Sydney in 1977, not Podunkville, New York. :evil:


Much agreed.

Can you imagine it? He would have set the world on fire and we all could have seen him. Even the young likes of Scott and me -- people born in the 80's. Damn it. And, if he'd gotten himself straightened out, his voice may have settled around the "Today" album mark, since a man in his 40's is meant to remain pretty vocally solid for ten or twenty years. That would have been incredible.

Thu Oct 12, 2006 6:26 am

Cryogenic wrote:
Gregory Nolan Jr. wrote:This sort of defensiveness doesn't help us when we try to make a case for Elvis among non-fans.

It's not long before it morphs into a notion of "why was Elvis' career such a failure?" , which is a sort of a "when did you stop beating your wife" sort of trick question we shouldn't get backed into...


LOL @ Greg!

That was an interesting way of putting it.

I agree.


I can't take credit for that expression, as I've heard it used before in reference to whenever someone gives you false choices.... :o :lol:

Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:26 am

I'm sorry, Greg, but for those of us who live in "podunkville" those tour stops were heaven. We don't all live in major cities.

Had Elvis lived long enough to stop in say, Fargo, ND, a city of about 85,000,after they built the Fargodome, I can assure you it would have been sold out. People would have come from hundreds of miles around.

FYI: Bruce Springsteen and Eric Clapton have appeared there.


Yes, Springsteen and Clapton have played ND within the scale of major national tours of 30+ dates. Their tours do not consist of 10 day stints in B-level markets with an occassional appearance in a large market. A lot of the Midwestern cities in the U.S. have built large modern arenas to attract not just major concert events, but large events in general for the benefit of the local respective economies. One of the driving forces behind Omaha building the Qwest Center was seeing acts like Springsteen play ND and not Omaha because Fargo had an appropriate venue. Same thing with Kansas City (a pretty big market), major concert attractions were not routing through KC enough for the city to determine a new state of the art arena was necessary and the Sprint Center is set to open in 2007. There is nothing wrong with artists playing B markets, all fans should have a chance to be entertained. My comments were not intended to put down smaller markets, it was pointing out Elvis' tour routing patterns in the mid/late 70's. You can bet that if ND had an appropriate venue in 1977, Parker would have booked Elvis there in a minute.