"Elvis Presley is the greatest cultural force in the 20th century."

(Leonard Bernstein)


"If you're an Elvis fan, no explanation is necessary; If you're not an Elvis fan, no explanation is possible."

(George Klein)


"For a dead man, Elvis Presley is awfully noisy."

(Professor Gilbert B. Rodman)


"History has him as this good old country boy, Elvis is about as country as Bono!"

(Jerry Schilling)







Aidin Vaziri, San Francisco Chronicle, Sunday, April 3, 2005

Yes, Lisa Marie Presley is the daughter of Elvis and ex-wife of both Nicolas Cage and Michael Jackson. But rather than hitting every lousy celebrity party with Nicole Richie on one arm and a Chihuahua on the other, she's actually doing something with her life.

This week, Presley releases "Now What", the follow-up to her 2003 debut album, "To Whom It May Concern." The new CD features collaborations with Pink, former Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones and songwriter Linda Perry, as well as a cover of Don Henley's '80s hit "Dirty Laundry." She spoke to us recently by phone from her home in Los Angeles.

Q: I understand you don't think this album is going to do very well.

A: There's not a large market for this kind of music on the radio going on right now. It all seems very Stepford. So I don't know.

Q: I'm sure people are willing to make room.

A: Well, it would be nice. I just don't think they're going to. Last time, I was pushed into the Top 40 thing, and that's not my demographic. I think that was a mistake. If it's just a fad thing, I'm not interested.

Q: Don't you need the fame and money?

A: Oh yeah, I've been waiting for it all my life.

Q: You've got Linda Perry helping out. Doesn't that automatically make the CD quadruple-platinum?

A: I don't know, does it?

Q: And Pink. What did you have in common with her, since you came from rock royalty and she basically came from a trailer park?

A: We have a lot in common. She came out at a time when a bunch of other young female artists came out and got stuck with that whole scene, when it's not really who she is. And then there's me, and whatever is thought of as being me.

Q: I noticed you have the lip-curl thing happening.

A: Oh my God.

Q: Did you have to practice that in the mirror, or is it an involuntary motion?

A: It looks premeditated, but when I sing, I get this snarl going, and genetically there's no way possible that I won't look like my dad if I do that. And my leg goes, too, sometimes. I can't stop it.

Q: After 30, we all become our parents. There's nothing you can do about it.

A: It's true. But that was my dad. It's not like he was my uncle or something, and I'm trying to ride his coattails. But I have noticed when I snarl like that the fans go nuts, so I tend to do it more when I get egged on, and I don't realize it.

Q: Does everything else come just as naturally to you?

A: When I first started playing live, there were some natural elements, but my discomfort level tipped the scale. The thing with me is, I'm not vain and I don't want attention on me. But you need to be front and center onstage. You have to want attention, and I had to really find my way with being OK with that.

Q: Didn't you have an Ashlee Simpson moment on the "Today Show"?

A: Oh my God. I fell off the stage on live television. But I jumped up in time to catch the next line. I think if I had a meltdown, that would have been an Ashlee Simpson moment. But I kept going.

Q: And you're actually showing your face in public again.

A: You know, what am I going to do? At least I recovered from it somewhat. I had other singers tell me they would have run crying. I had no choice.

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