An Interview with Ray Wood

Q. How long have you been performing as Elvis on Tour?

A - 4 years.

Q. Where did you get your stage name Elvis on Tour from?

A - There is a movie with the same name. I thought it was very apt.

Q. The name Elvis on Tour suggests that you do go on tour. Is this
the case and if so, where has your show taken you?

A - Yes. We have travelled extensively throughout the UK, England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. We have performed in several places in Spain, Greece, Turkey and the USA - . The USA - was extra - special, we performed in Memphis, the home of Elvis. Very shortly, we are very privileged to be performing at a wedding in southern Spain all expenses paid.

Q. How would you prioritise being, an Elvis fan and an Elvis tribute artist?

A - First and foremost, an Elvis fan. If i wasn't a fan, i doubt i would be an Elvis tribute artist.

Q. To be an Elvis tribute artist, what is or are the main attributes?

A - Elvis had many many great qualities, some being, his looks, his fantastic voice and he had charisma - with A - capital C!

Q. Do you ever get nervous before a show?

A - Yes everytime, because every show is a new audience so every show feels like the first.

Q. How do you feel when you are performing?

A - Full of emotion.

Q. Which song or songs get the best reaction from your audience and which song or songs do you enjoy performing?

A - Suspicious Minds, on both counts.

Q. In general, what stagewear do you like and dislike?

A - The jumpsuits Elvis wore in the '70's at the height of his career are my preference. I so dislike to see G.I uniform worn during a stage performance. When did Elvis wear an army uniform? When he was in the army and in the film G.I Blues. Not on stage.

Q. What do you think of Elvis tribute artists wearing sunglasses whilst on stage? Do you wear glasses on stage?

A - No, I don't wear glasses on stage, I did when i first started out but I decided it looked unprofessional and amateurish, now it's a pet hate of mine. I think it looks tacky. Although Elvis did wear sunglasses frequently, he never wore them whilst on stage, he always removed them prior to a show.

Q. What is your favourite type of venue?

A - We have performed in a variety of different venues and i enjoy them all but i have to say, performing in hotels is fantastic.

Q. To date, what do you consider to be the highs and lows of your career as an Elvis tribute act?

A - I consider every show a high as i enjoy performing. There are so many Elvis fans who were never fortunate enough for one reason or another to get to see Elvis himself perform live. I strive to bring the sound, the vision and the atmosphere of Elvis in my show. I enjoy the audiences' enjoyment. The lows? None to mention.

Q. Do you watch other Elvis tribute acts? If so, how many have you seen and what do you think of the quality of their websites?

A - Yes, whenever possible. There are many Elvis tribute artists out there and we try to support each other whenever we can. In general I think that many of the performers websites indicate the standard of their show, we have spent a lot of time and money on our site, continually adding new content and updating it in general and feel that the site reflects our commitment to providing a top quality show.

Q. Apart from yourself, which other Elvis tribute act do you admire and why?

A - I admire all Elvis tributes whether good or bad for helping keep the memory of Elvis alive.

Q. What sets you apart from other Elvis tribute artists?

A - 30 plus years of Elvis knowledge and attention to detail.

Q. What is your favourite Elvis movie?

A - Elvis on Tour. Hence my stage name.

Q. Other than Elvis, which other singer do you admire?

A - I like many singers, in particular, Buddy Holly and Meatloaf.

Q. Who is your favourite group?

A - Bee Gees and The Carpenters.

Q. Who is your favourite actor?

A - Sylvester Stallone.

Q. What is your favourite food?

A - Indian and chinese.

Q. What is your favorite animal?

A - Cats, I love cats.

Q. When not performing, do you have any hobbies or interests?

A - Yes, I enjoy keeping fit and in shape. I am a member of a health club which i attend regularly.

Q. What is your favourite sport?

A - Football and boxing.

Q. Past or present, who is your favourite sports personality?

A - Mohammed Ali.

Q. Elvis was an 8th degree black belt in karate. Have you ever done any type of martial arts?

A - Yes, i did ju jitsu and kick boxing for several years.

Q. Are you A - member of any professional Elvis tribute organisation? If not, why not?

A - No. Reason being, Elvis Presley Enterprises do not recognise any such organisations and they are not accredited. If the situation changes in the future then yes, we will be. 

Q. If you had the chance, who are the two people you would most like to meet?

A - Elvis and Jesus.

Q. Elvis was deeply religious. Are you?

A - Very much so.

Q. Who has been the most influential person or people in your career?

A - God, my family and my team.

Q. What are your hopes for the future?

A - To keep busy and keep improving in everything i do.

Q. And finally during is there anyone you would like to acknowledge or thank?

A - Yes. Lots of people, first of all my mentor Gordon Halliwell, who has put a lot of time and effort to help me, second my team who has stood by me for the last four years, they have shown great loyalty and support. Third; my fiance Debbie, she has given me great input and offered me constructive critiscm when its been needed and last of all my good friend Kev, the sites designer and hoster, he has always been honest with his opinion of my ideas for the site and converted them to exactly what I wanted, which has resulted in a first class and professional website which refelcts our show.