Book of The Month



The Curious Life of Elvis Presley's Eccentric Manager





Based on unprecedented, original research and interviews with insiders, this authoritative biography of Colonel Tom Parker (1909-1997), Elvis Presley’s lifelong manager, includes new revelations and insights into the music industry’s most notorious and mysterious manager. Investigative journalist and music writer James L. Dickerson looks at topics such as Parker’s illegal entry into the United States, his work as a carny with Royal American Shows, and his management of country singer Eddy Arnold, his partnership with Hank Snow, and how he manipulated Elvis Presley and his family to seize control of the singer’s career.

The book examines Parker’s greed, his indebtedness to behind-the-scenes players in Las Vegas, his gambling addiction, and his fear of deportation played a role in ruining Elvis’s career.  Because Colonel Parker was always there with Elvis, gazing ominously over his shoulder, the book presents behind-the-scenes glimpses of the entertainer’s career that you will read nowhere else, thanks in part to the author’s personal and professional relationship with Elvis’s first guitarist, Scotty Moore, with whom the author wrote two revealing books.


What Others Are Saying About This book

“A rare glimpse into the underbelly of the music biz.”—Los Angeles Daily News

“[A] stunning biography . . . A sad but enlightening, behind-the-scenes look into the life of the King and the man who put him on the throne.”—Nashville Tennessean

“This intriguing, meticulously researched biography of Presley’s Svengali could be a manual of how not to take care of your client . . . Dickerson has painted a riveting portrait of an especially unsavory character.”—Billboard

“This jaw-dropping biography . . . is a model of research, assembled with crafty objectivity and humor.”—Hal Kanter, director of the Elvis film Loving You

“Dickerson is tough but fair with his slippery subject . . . This is a well-presented biography of Colonel Tom Parker (1909-1997), who, through gall and cunning, created the ultimate celebrity icon. Recommended.”—Library Journal

“Dickerson has done his homework The wealth of detail that he gathers and lucidly imparts is never less than utterly compelling . . . He skillfully reduces a labyrinthine saga to simple component parts that make it easy to digest [and] impossible to put down.”—Mojo magazine

“An incendiary, powerful investigative account . . . An explanation, finally, of the twisted, corrupt relationship between Elvis and Colonel Parker.”—Joe Eszterhas, screenwriter of Basic Instinct


About the Author

After a career as a journalist for three Pulitzer Prize winning dailies, The Commercial Appeal of Memphis, the Clarion Ledger-Jackson Daily News, and the Delta Democrat-Times of Greenville (MS), he began a career as a full-time author. His book Mojo Triangle: Birthplace of Country, Blues, Jazz and Rock ‘n’ Roll earned a first place award from the Independent Publishers Association, and two music-related books, Goin’ Back to Memphis (since republished as Memphis Going Down) and That’s Alright, Elvis, co-written with Elvis Presley’s first guitarist, Scotty Moore, were finalists for the prestigious Gleason award. He co-wrote a second book with Moore titled Scotty & Elvis. Dickerson lives in the Metro Jackson, Mississippi, area. This is his first movie rights sale.


Buy Now on Amazon

Latest News

  • Mojo Rising: Masters of the Art and Mojo Rising: Contemporary Writers, a two-volume set of short stories written by the South’s greatest writers, were launched September 23 at William Faulkner’s home of Rowan Oak in Oxford Mississippi. Seated on the side veranda of Rowan Oak are, left to right: James L. Dickerson, editor of volume 1, Ace Atkins, who had a story in volume 2, Sheree Renee Thomas, who had a story in volume 2, Margaret Skinner, who had a story in volume 2, and Joseph B. Atkins, editor of volume 2. Among the authors in volume 1 are William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Shelby Foote, Willie Morris, Richard Wright, Ellen Douglas, and Tennessee Williams. Also pictured is Dickerson, standing at the entrance of Faulkner’s office. You can see Faulkner’s typewriter in the background.