When Dean was 3, the documentary “This Is Elvis” was being broadcast on television. He immediately cleared the coffee table, jumped on top of it and started trying to imitate Presley’s every move. Not long after, Dean’s mother made his first Elvis jump suit, and he was on his way.”The first song I sang on stage was ‘Jailhouse Rock.’ Every time I shook the audience would scream, and I’ve been shaking ever since.” Z said.
After performing in several shows of his own, Dean took off for the bright light city that would set his soul on fire, Las Vegas, at age 17. He relocated to the entertainment mecca to attain the goal of establishing himself as a well-known act. Throughout the next 12 years, Dean performed in Vegas, and has paid tribute to “The Memphis Flash” in Japan, Australia, Norway, Denmark, England, across Canada and the United States.Dean soon earned a spot with the World’s Greatest Live Tribute Show, “Legends in Concert,” then in 2007, moved to headlining the show in Branson, Missouri.”There’s just the right amount of production without watering down the authentic spirit of Elvis in the 50’s,” Dean says of his daily shows at Legends, Branson.As soon as Dean takes the stage, the stakes are automatically raised. Any preconceived notions are quickly dispatched as Dean takes the form of “The Rockabilly Cat” and never lets up. The young, smooth, grinning rebel Elvis with shiny black hair that is the envy of every man who may ever lay eyes on it comes alive in front of your very eyes.
In 2008, Dean, his 22 year old guitarist and brother Daniel, stand up bass player Rob Edwards and crew produced an amazing musical documentary and CD album collaboration filmed and recorded at the legendary Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee. Sun Studio is universally considered the birthplace of rock and roll, launching the careers of Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, “Howlin'” Wolf, Roy Orbison and Carl Perkins. This album-documentary chronicles Elvis’ entire musical catalog from early Sun Studio sessions. The sessions were painstakingly recreated using some of the same equipment that Elvis himself used in that very same studio. Producers also added “snaps,” “pops” and “hisses” during post-production to match the original recordings.
In 2013, Dean decided it was time to go after the title of Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist. Sanctioned by Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc. The Ultimate Elvis® Tribute Artist Contest™ involved hundreds of Elvis tribute artists competing in 29 preliminary events all over the world for an invitation to the Ultimate Elvis® Tribute Artist Contest™ Semi-Finals in Memphis during Elvis Week.Dean nailed down a trip to the Semi-Finals by winning the Preliminary held during the Rockin’ Elvis Fest” on March 17 at the Pala Casino, in Pala, California. He and the 28 other semi-finalists competed for the top ten spots on August 14th with the Finals coming three days later.Dean performed a version of “Jailhouse Rock” that had the crowd worked into a frenzy. He brought the house down, and was soon presented with a championship belt, the title of Ultimate Elvis 2013 from EPE, a check for $20,000 and tens of thousands of new fans.
The year 2014 was a banner year for Dean, who received the Heart Of The King Award in Las Vegas at the former Las Vegas Hilton, on the same stage the Elvis himself performed over 700 shows during the 1970’s. He also fulfilled a childhood dream of performing for the flagshipLegends In Concert production in Las Vegas at the Flamingo Hotel and Casino. Dean also had the pleasure of being a part of the national touring production Elvis Lives, a live musical highlighting Elvis’ career that features world champions from the Ultimate Elvis® Tribute Artist Contest™ .