Dean Z and Cody Ray Slaughter at Europe’s Tribute to Elvis Festival in Blackpool, England

“Europe’s Tribute to Elvis” was an Elvis festival in Blackpool, England that lasted three days. Elvis impersonators Dean Z and Cody Ray Slaughter were the headliners of two evening concerts. Ben Portsmouth was confirmed as the third “Elvis Presley”, but due to health reasons he unfortunately was not able to participate. Enjoy the first pictures taken during the two concert evenings (camera: Nikon D7100; Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105mm)!

Dean Z as Elvis during his jam session in Blackpool, England.

Dean Z as Elvis during his jam session in Blackpool, England.

Both Cody Slaughter and Dean Z performed for several hours as Elvis. Seeing them live on stage reminds you a lot of the real Elvis Presley – of course, as both received the title “Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist (ETA) Champion”. Dean Z won the contest in 2013, Cody Ray Slaughter in 2011. Since 2007 the ETA Contest is held annually during Elvis Week in Memphis, Tennessee and honors the world’s best Elvis performers.

Cody Ray Slaughter performing the '68 Comeback Special in Blackpool.

Cody Ray Slaughter performing the ’68 Comeback Special in Blackpool.

I first saw Dean Z live on stage in Atlanta, Georgia this January, as he was a cast member of the ELVIS LIVES tour. Actually, he was the first ETA I ever saw on stage. In March 2015 I saw Cody Ray Slaughter performing at the Georgia Elvis Festival in Brunswick, Georgia. I enjoyed both performances very much!

Dean Z on stage at the Elvis Festival: this golden jacket costs $ 2,000.

Dean Z on stage at the Elvis Festival: this golden jacket costs $ 2,000.

The audience in Blackpool, England was enthusiastic and despite the heat at Winter Gardens there was plenty of dancing going on. Some of the 1,200 Elvis fans were able to get some kisses from their favorite “Elvis” or at least did some handshaking. After the concerts there was time for autographs, pictures, and talking.

Cody Ray Slaughter in England: he performed twice on Saturday, as Ben Portsmouth got sick.

Cody Ray Slaughter in England: he performed twice on Saturday, as Ben Portsmouth got sick.

During my time at Blackpool I had the opportunity to do an outstanding interview with Dean Z about traveling. After several attempts I finally scheduled an interview with Cody Slaughter, but however, a few minutes before our appointment he decided to rather go to a fast food chain to eat pizza. That’s why I unfortunately had no opportunity to talk to him about traveling. Soon there will be more information about the Elvis festival in Blackpool!

Best wishes,
Claire

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