My Elvis Fan Story
Touched by Elvis, My Lifetime Love for the King
Kimberly Phillips is an artist and life-long Elvis fan who has attended every Elvis Week since 2010.
I cannot remember a time when I wasn’t an Elvis fan, I’m almost 99% sure that I started listening to Elvis before I was born as my mother, Thelma, was the original fan. My earliest memories of Elvis involved sitting in front of the TV for hours mesmerized watching, "Blue Hawaii," "G.I. Blues," "Fun in Acapulco," then sneaking back to the TV after bedtime just to get one more look at this brilliant man. I remember fondly sitting in the back of our family van with my headphones on playing all of my Mom’s Elvis cassettes until the tape tore and every time she’d just smile and indulge my passion by providing me with more.
My love for Elvis never wavered, although there were periods where I fell in love with other artists and other types of music; but in the end all roads always lead back to the king. As I grew, my appreciation for Elvis grew as well. I learned more about the man behind the music and how he was not just a legend but also a humanitarian. I try to follow his example by giving to those in need and treating all people the way I’d like to be treated.
I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to attend Elvis Week every year since 2010, in addition I've taken on the role of secretary in the Jailhouse Rockers Fan Club of California. I've also participated in the Honor Guard during the Candlelight Vigil, attended Elvis Insiders events, traveled around the U.S. checking out Elvis destinations and even had the opportunity to meet some of his close personal friends.
Since my mom was the one who introduced me to Elvis, she joins me each year for the wonderful events and festivities to celebrate Elvis’ life in Memphis. Over the past few years, I’m proud to say that I have met some of the best people because of Elvis and even more importantly have made life-long friends with people around the world.
I’m an artist and there is not a day that goes by when Elvis is not the source of my inspiration or the extra boost of energy I need to make it through the day. If I’m sad – Elvis; if I’m happy – Elvis; if I need encouragement – Elvis. I do everything listening to Elvis' music. I am proud to say that over the last four years, I’ve been able express my love for Elvis by incorporating him into my artwork.
Several of my Elvis portraits have graced the pages of the Elvis Week newspaper, been exhibited in the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art (this piece currently resides in the Graceland archives), donated for charity and most recently, two pieces I painted of Mother Dolores Hart and Elvis were featured on Elvis.com.
I was blessed to meet Mother Dolores at the Conversations on Elvis event during Elvis Week 2013 and was touched when I received a personal phone call from her weeks ago thanking me again for the portrait I gave her.
I give thanks to Elvis, all who celebrate his life and all of the wonderful people who have touched my life for having such a great love for this iconic man. Thank you to all the great friends I’ve made through Elvis and for his wonderful friends whom I’ve been lucky to meet over the past years. Last but not least I thank his family for their willingness to share him with the world.
Always and forever touched by Elvis.