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Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:53 am

Just because Elvis trusted the Colonel to the fault, doesn't mean that he deserved to get screwed over, time and time again!

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 6:38 am

Joe Car wrote:Just because Elvis trusted the Colonel to the fault, doesn't mean that he deserved to get screwed over, time and time again!


Agreed Joe... he was screwed over time and time again later on in his career... and yet he didn't do a thing about it.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 6:52 am

elvis-fan wrote:
Joe Car wrote:Just because Elvis trusted the Colonel to the fault, doesn't mean that he deserved to get screwed over, time and time again!


Agreed Joe... he was screwed over time and time again later on in his career... and yet he didn't do a thing about it.

Amazing how you continue to hold Elvis completely responsible for the mediocre path his career took. Why should the artist have to constantly second guess and battle the manager? You admit Elvis got "screwed" -- yet it was okay for Tom Parker to grossly mismanage Elvis because in the end, Elvis needed to take matters into his own hands, etc? Very twisted.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 7:54 pm

midnightx wrote:
elvis-fan wrote:
Joe Car wrote:Just because Elvis trusted the Colonel to the fault, doesn't mean that he deserved to get screwed over, time and time again!


Agreed Joe... he was screwed over time and time again later on in his career... and yet he didn't do a thing about it.

Amazing how you continue to hold Elvis completely responsible for the mediocre path his career took. Why should the artist have to constantly second guess and battle the manager? You admit Elvis got "screwed" -- yet it was okay for Tom Parker to grossly mismanage Elvis because in the end, Elvis needed to take matters into his own hands, etc? Very twisted.


Where did I say that? It amazes me how people can misinterpret information to suit their point of view... I would expect more from you midnight based on the exceptional insights you have provided on this forum time and time again...
I don't hold Elvis responsible at all for Parker misguiding him... that was all Parker... but was Elvis that blind that he couldn't have done something about it? Do you not think Elvis should have handled things differently? And did Parker introduce Elvis to prescription drugs? An artist shouldn't have to "constantly second guess and battle the manager"... he could have fired him.
To be clear I am no fan of Tom Parker... I just think it's ridiculous when people say it's (only) his fault that Elvis' career went in the shitter. I just think it's sad that's all.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 8:32 pm

In the "beginning" Parker did a lot for Elvis' career and I believe Elvis was grateful for all that Parker did for him in the early years. But when Elvis returned from the army, Elvis wasn’t happy recording “Stuck On You,” doing the Sinatra Timex Special and making GI Blues. Elvis seeing the direction Parker was going with his career, he should've told Parker what he wanted to do... only record songs he wanted to record, do a world - tour and become a serious actor. If Parker disagreed, Elvis should've let him go. But this wasn’t going to happen because Elvis wasn’t going to confront Parker and Parker knew it.

I like John Lennon’s quote, “It was bad enough for us Beatles. But there were four of us to share the burden. There was only one Elvis. It must have been impossible for him.” Who did Elvis have to help him stand up to Parker? His father? So called friends on his payroll?

Looking back it is easy to see where Parker made some good and bad decisions while managing Elvis. But at the same time it can’t be said he always had the best interests of Elvis in mind.

Elvis should have taken better care of himself and taken more control of his career. Nobody killed Elvis except Elvis, but with friends like Parker, who needs an executioner?

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 8:35 pm

elvis-fan wrote:
midnightx wrote:
elvis-fan wrote:
Joe Car wrote:Just because Elvis trusted the Colonel to the fault, doesn't mean that he deserved to get screwed over, time and time again!


Agreed Joe... he was screwed over time and time again later on in his career... and yet he didn't do a thing about it.

Amazing how you continue to hold Elvis completely responsible for the mediocre path his career took. Why should the artist have to constantly second guess and battle the manager? You admit Elvis got "screwed" -- yet it was okay for Tom Parker to grossly mismanage Elvis because in the end, Elvis needed to take matters into his own hands, etc? Very twisted.


Where did I say that? It amazes me how people can misinterpret information to suit their point of view... I would expect more from you midnight based on the exceptional insights you have provided on this forum time and time again...
I don't hold Elvis responsible at all for Parker misguiding him... that was all Parker... but was Elvis that blind that he couldn't have done something about it? Do you not think Elvis should have handled things differently? And did Parker introduce Elvis to prescription drugs? An artist shouldn't have to "constantly second guess and battle the manager"... he could have fired him.
To be clear I am no fan of Tom Parker... I just think it's ridiculous when people say it's (only) his fault that Elvis' career went in the shitter. I just think it's sad that's all.

We are clearly talking about two different things here. This thread is not about Elvis' insecurities and lack of sophistication. This thread is about Tom Parker's ineffective management and corruption that ultimately marginalized a career of an ultra-talented entertainer.

The inner-workings of artist/management relationships can be quite tricky and complex. Elvis' situation was not unique. The Who's original managers Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp were also involved with self-dealing and ultimately had a very messy divorce from the band -- and even though Townshend knew the band needed to part ways, he hesitated because he also felt a sense of loyalty to the management team that had helped groom the band and his own talent. Hendrix's manager Michael Jeffery was also guilty of self-dealing and corruption. Hendrix was a bright man, yet he was tangled in a corrupt management web that he could not break out of prior to his death. It isn't as simple as an artist "firing" a manager because they aren't happy.

So, yes, in theory, Elvis should have fired Tom Parker during the mid-late '60s -- or at least followed through with the 1973 firing. But that was not the case. He was buried in the situation. And once Elvis was caught in a vicious cycle of drug abuse, he lacked clarity and was paranoid about his options and who he truly was and who he could become. He also lacked sophistication and was unaware of how the business worked, and what his options could be -- this of course because he was reclusive and sheltered from the entertainment community (and Parker played a role in that). So, going back to the main topic at hand, Tom Parker has a corrupt, out-of-touch manager who was guilty of self-dealing for the majority of Elvis' career and who grossly mismanaged Elvis' affairs.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:32 pm

Elvis fan- I didn't mean to put words in your mouth. It was just the inference I took from your Guralnick book comment. But I do believe that early on Parker did do a good job early on as strictly my own opinion.

I tend to agree more with Midnight on this. If you hire a professional for advice, then you should be able to trust that the professional knows what he's doing and is working in your best interests whether it's an attorney or a manager. The reason you hire them is because they supposedly have expertise in a given field and you don't. I mean you could make a judgment that things are not working out, but especially Elvis, it can be tough to find that moment. Sure by 1970 Parker did not arrange a big movie contract or an international tour, Elvis' RCA deal was subpar but he's also still making mucho dinero. How was Elvis supposed to know that those other things were possible in that context, particularly when Parker went to great extremes limit outside personal stimulus? It's very ease for a person to sell you a line in that context. Parker could say to Elvis you're still making tons of money at a time when all the rockers who came up with you are on the margins. I think it's asking a lot of Elvis to know that didn't have to either/or. There are people that have the business sense to manage their own career. However, that's their personal inclination. If someone wants to concentrate on what they do well, there's no excuse for the professionals they hire to take advantage of them.

I don't think Elvis was a babe in the woods. I think he was complicit in some of Parker's strategies like sticking to songs he and Elvis owned and in making the formula films in order to wait and get a chance at a big movie. However, I think it's unreasonable to ask an artist to manage business as well as he/she does their music.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Fri Sep 09, 2011 11:20 pm

I think all elvis-fan means is that because Elvis didn't want to pay attention to his career that Parker was able to take advantage of that.

For example Parker should have set up international tours but ultimately the reason Elvis never toured overseas is because of Elvis.

Elvis reportedly bought the Lisa Marie in 1975 to tour Europe but still never went.

It doesn't excuse Parker for not setting up an international tour it's just pointing out that if Elvis had been more assertive it probably would have happened.

That's not saying Parker was a great manager or giving him a pass it's far from it.

You are right an artist shouldn't have to fight with their manager everytime over doing what's best for their careers, but the options were to disagree more or fire Parker.
That would've have been the only ways to fix the situation.

I don't care if Parker was a saint it's a bad idea for anyone not to be involved with the decision making of their careers to the extent that Elvis was.

It was also a bad idea for Elvis to have Vernon involved in managing his money.

I agree with elvis-fan 100%.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sat Sep 10, 2011 2:50 am

midnightx wrote:So, yes, in theory, Elvis should have fired Tom Parker during the mid-late '60s -- or at least followed through with the 1973 firing. But that was not the case. He was buried in the situation. And once Elvis was caught in a vicious cycle of drug abuse, he lacked clarity and was paranoid about his options and who he truly was and who he could become. He also lacked sophistication and was unaware of how the business worked, and what his options could be -- this of course because he was reclusive and sheltered from the entertainment community (and Parker played a role in that). So, going back to the main topic at hand, Tom Parker has a corrupt, out-of-touch manager who was guilty of self-dealing for the majority of Elvis' career and who grossly mismanaged Elvis' affairs.


I don't disagree with that.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sat Sep 10, 2011 3:22 am

Why hire an electrician if you're just going to boss them around like you know more than they do or you want something done a certain way even though the electrician is fully qualified and knowledgeable. You might as well do the job yourself and end up making the situation ten times worse and causing a massive fire that affects others. You hire an electrician, which means you put a lot of trust in them to do the job without you having to be on them 24/7. It's the same thing with Elvis and Parker.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:59 pm

How come no one mentions how hot Tom Parker was in his early days?

Perhaps Elvis was jealous of him.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sun Sep 11, 2011 4:37 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:How come no one mentions how hot Tom Parker was in his early days?

Oh, it has been mentioned. Let's face it, there was a reason why LBJ was so taken with him.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sun Sep 11, 2011 11:06 am

greystoke wrote:
eligain wrote:
Bodie wrote:
Juan Luis wrote:I think the best thing Parker did with Elvis (for whatever reason) was keeping them (us fans) wanting more. No talk shows and being seen on tv alot etc.. When I saw Elvis in 1977,I remember he was in and out too fast. And his part of the show lasted an hour or so. One of the longest of his late 70's concerts. I remember thinking I will see him again. Not to be.


I disagree with that.

Im sure Elvis would have loved to have done a TV show like Tom Jones did from 1969-71.

Elvis could have done duets with some of the biggest stars of Rock n Roll, country, blues,gospel etc and it would have been sensational.


I agree with Juan, the one thing I think Parker did good was to keep Elvis exclusive. Had Elvis continued to do TV guest spots after the 50's and did yearly TV specials like other artists did, he would have been devalued and in the publics mind, been just another singer like Glen Campbell or Tom Jones. Parker did know the value of not being over exposed and the adage of; "Always leave them wanting more." Elvis's music was never part of any 50's Rock compilations and he was never sold as a nostalgia act which also kept him exclusive. He was always above al the other 50's artists and Parker did good in making sure Elvis was a "current act." But I agree with all of the other criticisms of Parker as a bad, unethical manager.


There's a fine line between being "exclusive" and "confined," and Elvis falls more often in the category of the latter, IMO . . . Keen exposure and a variety of projects that afforded him an alternative to the concert stage would not have "devalued" Elvis in the slightest. In fact, such may have afforded him a few bigger hits throughout the decade, not to mentioned spurred his interests in new projects through actually working with real, talented people from whom he could learn -- and vice versa.

To be of a mind that Elvis was "above all the other '50s artists" is an elitist and narrow-minded attitude that wholly ignores the fact that he spiralled into an early grave after years of his career being in neutral -- nor was he considered as being a "contemporary" act during most of the 1970s. Yet, the likes of Cash, Diamond and Jones endured long after Elvis - and through any career downturns - to reap commercial rewards and critical plaudits that eluded a talent in Elvis that was wholly capable, but mismanaged and lost in a quagmire of tours, when lesser artists were afforded more options and better outlets.


Elvis always was above all the other 50's artists even in the 50's. Elvis didn't play any "package deals" with other artists after he gained fame in 1956. He didn't do Alan Freed's package shows because he was too big for that. Just because he died before most of them doesn't mean he wasn't above them. And yes he was still considered a contemporary artist in the 70's. He wasn't part of 50's revival concerts and he didn't just come out and sing his 50's hits like Chuck Berry and Little Richard did and he continued to put out new product. I saw Johnny Cash 3 times. Twice in the 70's and once in the 80's and all three times he played in half filled theaters to mostly elderly audiences, His image got rehabilitated right before and after his death but besides his poor concert attendance he was doing TV movie westerns so I don't think Elvis would have wanted his career. Tom Jones had no movie career and rarely ever played anything bigger than theaters when he toured the US but was stuck in Vegas most of the time night in and night out. Diamond is a different story. He too was above most of his contemporaries. After gaining fame, he did TV sparingly and did only a few TV specials and played and still plays sold out arena's

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sun Sep 11, 2011 1:57 pm

Yes, Parker had a lot of success with Elvis, but in his own mind. It's people who have his warped frame of mind that side with him.

He got Elvis a movie contract with a major studio, fabulous, but Elvis made amateur movies compared to other movies from the 50's and 60's. On top of that, Elvis was basically a joke to the studio and Parker didn't seem to mind because he and the studio cashed in on the long running joke. Maybe they were all jealous perhaps? Why were other actors getting great movies while the studio agreed to do cheap, novelty films that were forgettable in the sense that they weren’t great when it came to Elvis? You’d think that if they really cared they would tell Parker that they would only agree to great movies. Either they dove in or they stayed out of the pool.

Parker arranged for Elvis to perform at large venues, Vegas and Hawaii, fantastic, but he kept booking Elvis and overloading him with scheduled performances all while being fully aware of Elvis' poor health: exhaustion, dependency on prescription medication (who knows if Parker, his doctors and some of his entourage were in on it) and stress. I think that Elvis made excuses as to why he couldn't perform because it was his only way to get out of performing and do what he wanted to do.

Parker kept Elvis’ success even though Elvis was in the Army and out of commission when it came to performing, acting and recording, incredible. But you forget that Elvis’ mind was elsewhere, he was depressed about a lot of things, which included the death of his mother. It wasn’t the right time for him to be making movies, recording or performing.

Parker got Elvis on TV shows that were big ticket shows at the time, amazing. But Parker bribed them with money and such, which made Elvis look really bad if you think about it. Also, Elvis wasn’t all that happy with how he was treated on those shows.

Elvis got to do the 1968 Special, awesome. It also took Parker a while to eventually agree to do what NBC wanted, but Elvis was forced to do tacky musical numbers in between the performances that were live, but scripted. Now if NBC had the guts to stand up to Parker, why didn’t the movie producers?

Parker raked in tons of money, genius. Too bad Elvis didn’t really care about the money or material things for that matter. People also walked all over Elvis like a doormat just for the money, gifts and their chance in the spotlight because of their association with him however briefly those encounters were.

Parker was so incredibly amazing that he wore a Hawaiian shirt Elvis’ funeral, still demanded money from Elvis even though Elvis was dead and continued to milk him for all he was worth until he himself died after a long lived life, unlike his client.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:41 am

Elvis was unique and Colonel was very lucky with him. We must remember from the Nash's book that Tom Parker liked more the young Tommy Sands. So how people can call him a genius? Bill Randle could be a far better manager because he, not the Colonel, bring Elvis on TV at Cleveland. And Elvis became number one in 1955 on the Bilboard list of the most talented singers in the future by his own talent. The tragedy was that Elvis trusted him completely and worse, his father Vernon Presley, lazy and without any knowledge on showbusiness was corrupted from the very beginning with 100 $ bills from the Colonel. And despite the fact that the Colonel was hard at work, he was losing touch with the "Times they are changin" after 1962. The others facts: the banishing of Leiber and Stoller, the decreasing quality of the movies and the soundtracks, the 1968 desire of him for Elvis to sing only Christmas carols, the Vegas endless engagemants, the refuse to go on international tours, the obsession to book Elvis in small towns, the buyout catalogue deal- to me are only consequences of the Colonel psycopath diagnostic of his discharging from the US Army in the 30's. The Colonel could charm high ranked officials (including Lyndon Johnson) but only for his own pleasure and his paranoia to be on top of the game including the Snowmen's League.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:34 pm

drjohncarpenter wrote:
lvs4evr wrote:most fans and people say that PARKER was a rude and heartless man , some even blame him for ELVIS demise. I feel differntly and want to know how many think the same , and of course those that don't are welcome as well. Ithink from the start ELVIS and his parents knew exactly what to expect with the colonel , his job was to make ELVIS a star , and very wealthy , so it seems he kept his part of the promise he made him, he wasn't going to be his daddy , or finacial adviser , only his manager at whatever the rate they agreed on . I think many a celeb would love to have bin managed by PARKER , but then again there was no one like ELVIS PRESLEY. I think of all the great deals the colonel did and then i also think of some of the bad ones and ask was he a bad manager?

I love how your post is filled with feelings, but not facts.

For instance, Gladys Presley HATED Parker from their first meeting, and recognized him for the con man that he was. But Elvis and Vernon fell hook, line and sinker for his act, so she was overruled. It's another reason her untimely death was regretful. Some of Parker's later dealings would have been difficult to accomplish with Gladys around, watching her son's happiness and well-being erode.

It might be best said that Parker did help propel Elvis to the top of the entertainment field in 1956-57, but after that he did far more harm than good. By 1970, they should have parted ways.

Otherwise, any attempt to justify Parker's management of Elvis leaves me cold. Although it's easy to judge with hindsight, it is beyond question that Parker's management of Presley in the second decade of their relationship was self-serving and short-sighted.

Facts are facts.

Following Presley's death, Parker set up a licensing operation with Factors Etc. Inc, to control Presley merchandise and keep a steady income supporting his estate. It was later revealed that Presley owned 22% of the company, Parker owned 56%, and the final 22% was made up of various business associates.

In January 1979, it was discovered that Presley had lost out on royalties for songs he had been listed as a composer on, due to Parker advising him not to sign up to Broadcast Music Incorporated. Experts in the field at the time summarized that it had potentially cost Presley millions of dollars.

By 1980 the cost of running the estate was estimated to be as much as $500,000 a year. Priscilla and the Trust were prepared to let Parker continue to handle Presley's business affairs, and petitioned the court to that end. However, Judge Joseph Evans, aware that Lisa Marie Presley was still a minor, appointed attorney Blanchard E. Tual to investigate Parker's management. His preliminary finding was that Parker's management deal of 50% was extortionate compared to the industry average of 15–20%. He also noted that Parker's handling of Presley's business affairs during his lifetime, including the decision to sell off past royalties to RCA for $5.4 million in 1973, was "unethical" and poorly handled.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonel_Tom_Parker#Surviving_Elvis


Great post, Doc!!!!!!!!!

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:00 pm

I don't know much about this very honest and inteligent person( Blanchard E. Tual ) but hatts off! He proved once and for all what a conman the Colonel was.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:25 pm

The part that pisses me off is this next statement from that write up...

On August 14, 1981, Judge Evans ordered EPE to sue Parker for mismanagement. In response to this, Parker countersued. The case against Parker was settled out of court in 1983, with the estate paying him $2 million


Even after they found out about Parker and his mismanagement of Elvis' career, they still ended up having to pay him off... :evil:

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Tue Jan 15, 2013 11:33 am

If like you all say here Parker was so crazy about money, why on earth didn't he manage more artists?
Many wanted to be managed by Parker!

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:20 pm

Because no one was equal to Elvis. Parker managed Eddy Arnold and Hank Snow until Elvis. In the 57-58 period he liked very much Tommy Sands. In the summer of 1963, acording to Careless Love (Peter Guralnick) even Elvis proposed to the Colonel to manage Ann Margret. But Elvis for him was allmighty dollar so how he could move to someone else?!?

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:23 pm

jurasic1968 wrote:Because no one was equal to Elvis. Parker managed Eddy Arnold and Hank Snow until Elvis. In the 57-58 period he liked very much Tommy Sands. In the summer of 1963, acording to Careless Love (Peter Guralnick) even Elvis proposed to the Colonel to manage Ann Margret. But Elvis for him was allmighty dollar so how he could move to someone else?!?


I did not mean "move to somebody else" but manage others next to Elvis and make even more money.
He didn't, so I figure he wasn't as crazy about money as people want us to believe he was.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:14 pm

Elvis was not stupid. If Parker managed other clients and him also in the same time I am sure he had fired the Colonel for good.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:16 pm

jurasic1968 wrote:Elvis was not stupid. If Parker managed other clients and him also in the same time I am sure he had fired the Colonel for good.


Parker could have used the excuse that Elvis only wanted to work 5 to 6 months a year......

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:26 pm

Could have been worse,imagine if someone like Don King( I know he's a boxing promoter) was his manager! There were probably a lot worse people that Parker as managers,but Parker hurt Elvis' career in the fact that he didn't want Elvis around other people in the business,people who could have helped him grow as a artist.You can bet he didn't forget being fired by Eddy Arnold so he kept Elvis isolated.He was also lucky that Elvis' mother passed away,that coupled with the Army put Elvis in a very vulnerable position and he relied on Parker even more.

Re: colonel parker bad manger /person

Wed Jan 16, 2013 2:43 pm

jacob wrote:Could have been worse,imagine if someone like Don King( I know he's a boxing promoter) was his manager! There were probably a lot worse people that Parker as managers,but Parker hurt Elvis' career in the fact that he didn't want Elvis around other people in the business,people who could have helped him grow as a artist.You can bet he didn't forget being fired by Eddy Arnold so he kept Elvis isolated.He was also lucky that Elvis' mother passed away,that coupled with the Army put Elvis in a very vulnerable position and he relied on Parker even more.


With all this you make Elvis look like a fool.
Elvis had contact with lots of people in showbizz. There are thousands of photos to show it.
Then there were people in Elvis' entourage that had showbizz connections.
Despite religious leaders and leaders in the community trying to kill Elvis' career, followed by the militaity trying to kill Elvis' career, it was thanks to Parker Elvis came back bigger than ever in 1960.
Parker even had Elvis being paid for non-appearances! Check the history!