Presley power

Presley power

Cleaning supervisor Cliffy Tan leads a colourful double life.

When he puts on his white jumpsuit, matching leather shoes, silver-rimmed sunglasses and styles his full head of permed hair into a pompadour, he turns into Elvis Presley, belting out songs in the King's signature throaty voice and classic swagger.

Mr Tan, 67, is a tribute artist from the Singapore Elvis and Country Group at Thomson Community Club, which is keeping the spirit of Elvis alive by performing at charity functions and public engagements - more than three decades after the King's death.

The group of about 20 active members - ranging between 50 and 70 years old - have inspired a local documentary.

The Kings, a film about Elvis Presley fans, was screened at the sixth Singapore Indie Doc Fest last month.

Victoria Tay, 23, a recent film graduate of Lasalle College of the Arts who now works as an assistant producer at a production house, shot the film over three months, from December last year.

She found the group online through a meet-up website and was struck by how enduring a music symbol Presley is.

"The group has a huge passion for him because it is a reminder of it members' past.

It's a way to show people the energy and spirit of Elvis, and build bridges between generations when they perform." Mr Tan says he started to idolise Elvis when he heard the opening strains of Are You Lonesome Tonight? crackling over an old wooden radio back in 1956 when he was a primary school boy.

"His voice just washed over me," says Mr Tan, who went on to buy the singer's vinyl records and cassette tapes, memorising the lyrics as he sang along.

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