Heyyyyy babies! This week we bring you none other than the King of the Crypt, the Duke of Disgraceland, Sir Swivel Hips himself, (after)live from beyond the grave: Dead Elvis. This one-corpse-band has been kicking out the best maggot-ridden rockabilly this side of The Cramps since 2007 and is now making his third trip to China, hitting Shanghai for a gig Friday night at 390. Read our interview with the man behind the mask and jam some tunes before catching the zoot suit zombie dead in concert:
Dead Elvis: Yes, this is the third time I come to Asia and it will also be the third time I visit China. All tours so far were realy cool, I enjoyed myself very much! The shows were all awesome and people are really nice! When I was a kid I hung out a lot with the Chinese kids at school so I guess that influenced me quite a bit! I can tell ya, touring is very much the same everywhere... mostly "nightlife, gigs, hotels, cars, and airplanes." I hope this time will be the same or better than last time, but I expect nothing more than a hell of a lot of FUN!
DE: In pictures and videos I am ALWAYS with the mask, I will never take the mask off on video. I like the look of the pictures and videos, it's great and very much like "b-movies" or something. But I think my personal life is something different from Dead Elvis and both characters should not be mixed. It kinda adds to the act when it is an unknown person behind the mask. As the Cramps sung already, "What's Behind the Mask"!?
DE: Yeah I play with a lot of them, you got onemanbands in most countries these days. It's always good to meet fellow onemanbands and see how they create music alone. There are many variations on the "onemanband thing," it's realy cool! I found alot of onemanbands in Brazil! There are real cool ones down there like: The Fabulous Gogoboy From Alabama, The Amazing Onemanband, O Lendário Chucrobillyman, Hitman Onemanband, and Xtreme Bluesdog. Some great other onemanbands I have met are: The Fly & His One Man Garbage, Bob Log III, Leadfoot Lee's One-Man Trash Band, King Automatic, and One Man Destruction Show. There are many more that I am probably forgetting right now, but there is a list of onemanbands on my webpage. Check it out!
DE: What you read is true, it all started with the mask and it has definitely changed my life. This is still the same one as I began with, if I ever lose it I will be heartbroken for sure! I have a backup and I am working on having some more made but this one is the best and I want to use it until it's finished. It doesn't get grimy at all, the suit does get very grimy sometimes but the mask is rubber and always is kinda fresh somehow!
DE: It's mostly people from all walks of life, I don't think there is a "typical Dead Elvis fan" or something. It can appeal to anybody, there are fans from five years to 80 years old. I see rockabillies, psychobillies, punks, gothics, old school rock'n'rollers, hipsters, and average folk having fun together at my shows. You could say "Dead Elvis is everywhere and everybody"!
DE: Yeah it's my main gig at the moment, I couldnt do much more on the side. Any boss would fire me after a few weeks as I would always ask for time off, hehe. I do sometimes work as a roadie/runner for venues and bands. I like it a lot and it fits with my lifestyle. In the last two years alone, I've been doing 160 shows and traveling for about 200 days. It's very busy but I like it, for me being a onemanband is kinda perfect as I can do everything myself! I create the artwork, do the recordings, make the website and even release records on my own record label called Monster Mash Records! It's great, I can go my own way and don't have to wait for anybody else.
That enthusiasm is infectious. Catch Dead Elvis & His One Man Grave Friday, June 21) at 390, after an opening set from Lowbow.