PALM SPRINGS, CA. Travis Powell graced our grand State of California with a small, personal concert at the famous Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway. He recently competed in the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest (UETAC) in Memphis, TN during the annual Elvis Week.
Powell’s journey from North Carolina to Tennessee to California seemed to travel along a route described in the song Promised Land. It seemed he was winning every major contest across the United States before he competed in the UETAC in Memphis. Dean Zeligman won the crown, but Powell was neither disappointed nor discouraged by losing out to Dean. It was all part of an exciting year long journey from Country Rock Artist to Elvis Tribute Artist and coming to an apex at the Honeymoon Hideaway. He said, “If you told me one year ago I would be standing in Elvis’ house and singing, I wouldn’t have believed it.”
Well, believe it, brother. You were there standing on the same dining room floor where Elvis hung out with his new bride and pals, singing to us. Powell entertained us with songs from the hit Elvis documentary, Elvis: That’s the Way it Is; followed by a second set with hits from the worldwide 1973 Aloha from Hawaii satellite concert TV special.
The surrealism of Powell’s journey appeared to have come to reality during the final stanza of American Trilogy. Taking the blue scarf that was draped around his neck, he buried his face in it, as the culmination of events which lead to this moment overwhelmed him. The entire room was silent except for the sniffles. To my left, my wife shared the moment with tears of her own. To my right, mother and daugther Elvis fans, Tess and Jeanine, shared in the moment with their tears. Behind me, two other women bowed their heads and blotted their eyes. All around were misty eyes sharing the reality of the moment with Powell.
This humble, Southern gentleman, has an amazing look, a beautiful voice, and a generous soul. He graciously shared his journey with us in his tribute to Elvis in song, pleasant conversation, and pictures to capture the moments. The past year’s events which brought Travis Powell to California have come to an end, but the journey is just beginning for this talented ETA. I hope he doesn’t mind if we tag along.