Billy Woodward is living his dream. He has performed in Japan, toured Memphis, and has recorded in Sun Studios, Elvis Presley's original recording studio.
For Woodward, Presley has always been a musical influence.
"I was immediately drawn to his raw performance style," the 30-year-old St. Leonard native said. "He had an incredible hunger that translated in the way he sang."
His band, Billy Woodward and the Senders, was created through Craigslist and has opened for Fitz and the Tantrums and G. Love. The band independently released its first album last spring.
Woodward is currently living in hotels as he tours as an understudy as Presley with the cast of Broadway musical "Million Dollar Quartet," which runs through Sunday at the Hippodrome Theatre. You can also see Woodward perform live at Night of 100 Elvises on Saturday at the Lithuanian Hall.
Woodward took some time from his busy touring schedule to discuss his favorite rock album, "Breaking Bad" and more.
Worst pet peeve? When people scrape the fork against their teeth when they eat.
What song are you hating/loving right now? Loving "North Side Gal" by JD McPherson. I can't really think of a song I'm hating right now. Maybe "Last Christmas" by George Michael. It's going to be a long holiday season.
Last concert/gig you went to? Eddie Clendening at a rockabilly club in Japan called Heavy Sick. Epic pompadours.
Favorite Elvis song? Tough one. I'm a big fan of his version of "Milk Cow Blues," "Trying to Get to You" and "It Hurts Me."
Trend that has exceeded its natural lifespan? Low hanging jeans.
What's on your iPod? I have a lot of friends' albums, old rock 'n' roll, classic country, jazz, jump blues and hip-hop. But since I've started using Spotify, I've noticed my music time has shifted quite a bit to that.
Last great book you read? "11/22/63," by Stephen King
Food you hate? Not sure it exists. Durian comes to mind as the food I had a hard time with. I want to give it another chance though.
Favorite rock album? "Exile on Main St.," by the Rolling Stones.
TV shows you can't get enough of? "Breaking Bad." The most amazing television I've ever seen.
Favorite/least favorite fashion statement? If a person goes out of their way to make a fashion statement, good on them.
Best advice you ever got? "Follow your dreams and never give up." Thanks, Mama.
Favorite song to perform live? The original would be "All Been Said," usually our first number. A lot of pent up nerves and emotion spill over on that one. Cover would be our version of "Oh Boy" by Buddy Holly, total reckless abandon. With "Million Dollar Quartet," I'd say "Peace in the Valley." I'm very attached to that song.
Favorite thing about Baltimore? The people. There's honest love of music, art and community.
AS TOLD TO IAN ZELAYACopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun