- Category : Entertain-Business-Manager-Agent
- Type : MGE
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Split - Small (20,44,55)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Service 2
- Birth Year: 1909
- Birthday: 26. June
- Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands
- Category: Entertain-Business-Manager-Agent
- Profile: 1-3
- Type: Emotional Manifesting Generator
- Inc.Cross: Service 2
- Definition: Double Split - Small (20,44,55)
- Variables: BRL-MRR
- 2145 The Money Line
- 1222 Openness
- 4253 Maturation
- 1858 Judgment
Dutch-American, called "Colonel Tom Parker" who became Elvis Presley's personal manager from 1956-77. He is considered to be the man behind the Elvis Presley legend.
Immigrating to the US in 1929, he was given the honorary title of "Colonel" in 1948 by Louisiana governor Jimmie Davis.
A mystery figure, he gave out few details about his life and at least one columnist wrote that he fabricated some or all of his background. Parker weighed over 300 pounds, smoked Cuban cigars, and lacked many social graces. He was accused of exploiting Presley, allegedly taking up to 50% of the singer's earnings, but Parker defends himself by denying that he took anything he wasn't entitled to take. He also claims that that Presley wouldn't have made the big time without his help.
Parker began his career in the mid '40s when he promoted local appearances of budding stars including film star Tom Mix and singer Eddy Arnold. He managed Arnold until Arnold fired him in 1953. The following year, Parker opened a booking agency in Nashville, TN, and managed the career of country singer Hank Snow. He booked Presley as a young singer for one of Snow's opening acts, and in 1955, Parker took over as Presley's adviser. He convinced RCA to buy out Presley's contract with a small recording studio, and in 1956, following the release of Presley's first top selling record, Parker by contract became Presley's "sole and exclusive adviser, personal representative and manager."
After Presley's death in 1977, rumors began to fly over Parker's intentions. He battled the estate many times including a lawsuit brought on behalf of Lisa Marie Presley, the King's daughter, accusing Parker of fraud and mismanagement. In 1983, Parker dropped his claims to the estate and sold many of his master Presley recordings to RCA. Despite the lawsuits, Parker continued to promote mementos of Presley, including in 1993, making a public appearance when a postage stamp honoring Presley was issued.
After Parker's wife died in 1980, he remarried and moved to Las Vegas, working for Hilton Hotels as an entertainment advisor. On January 21, 1997 in Las Vegas, he died from complications of a stroke. He was a millionaire and remains a mystery, always declining to write a book and rejecting requests for interviews.