Conversations with Missy: Cote Deonath, Nashville Elvis Festival

by Missy Wolf / 2185 days ago / Comments

As many of you know, there are several Elvis impersonators all over the world and especially in places like Las Vegas. What many of you may not know is that there is a huge difference between those impersonators and actual Elvis Tribute Artists aka ETAs. 

Elvis impersonators often live their life looking like "Elvis" daily while an Elvis Tribute Artist spends a lot of time studying the various looks, style, mannerisms, voice, stage performance, and on stage personality in order to pay tribute to "The King" for an on-stage performance/competition only. 

There are many festivals that are home to these amazingly talented ETAs such as the Nashville Elvis Festival. These festivals also serve as the gateway into the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest hosted by Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee, as they are considered Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest preliminary rounds

Holding the title of Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist holds a very special and personal meaning for these Tribute Artists. For many, participation in the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest connects them to Elvis and his legacy in a much deeper way. The hard work that is put in by each of these Tribute Artists is something to be greatly admired as their commitment and discipline to remain authentic are unwavering. 

As I sat with ETA Cote Deonath at this year's Nashville Elvis Festival, we spoke about what it is like performing and paying tribute to Elvis in a respectful and authentic way. I asked Deonath if there were times he challenges himself with his performances. I was not at all surprised by his answer, as Deonath has demonstrated that he can perform various eras of Elvis from the early years to the jumpsuit years. 

As a special guest and performer at the 2018 Nashville Elvis Festival, Deonath and I were able to discuss what a tough job it is for the judges on who will be selected to represent Nashville in the 2018 Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest. The fact is, the best of the best were selected to compete, so the judges were going to have to make a difficult decision. I, for one, was very glad I did not have to make any determinations. 

Deonath definitely has a lot of fun doing what he does, but most importantly, he has remained authentic and respectful to the legend that has paved the way for so many artists in the music industry. Being an ETA is not merely a gimmick to gain attention from fans all over the world while posing for countless pictures. Being an Elvis Tribute Artist demands a lot of time to listen, study, watch and learn. The attention to detail and accuracy of costumes, movements, vocals, and stage performance are key to earning the coveted titles these ETA's work hard for. 

Deonath is definitely one of the "cream of the crop" ETAs. Representing the Branson Elvis Festival, Deonath is a semifinalist for the 2018 Ultimate Tribute Artist Contest at Graceland during Elvis Week. 

For more on Deonath, please follow him on social media and check out his website to see where you can find him next. ~Missy


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About Missy Wolf

Missy Wolf Co-Founder, Editor, Journalist & Vice President of the American Country Music Association

From an early age I knew music and entertainment were in my blood. I have always been enamored with the idea of being in this industry, though I never wanted to be a front and center "Star". Taking the audience behind the scenes for up close conversations with the artists they love is where I want to be. Life in lyrics has always been my style, so as my favorite country artist Wade Hayes sings, I am living my life and chasing my dreams! Conducting interviews, meeting talented people and sharing stories and adventure are my passion. My new favorite hashtag is #iaskyouanswer, so stay tuned for more interviews, articles and adventures!