Lisa Marie Presley, 54
February 1, 1968 - January 12, 2023
Lisa Marie Presley, a singer and songwriter and the daughter of Elvis Presley and Priscilla Presley, died Jan. 12, 2023, at a hospital in the Los Angeles area. She was 54. Presley was born in Memphis, Tennessee, on Feb. 1, 1968. She grew up in Los Angeles with her mother. She is survived by her mother, Priscilla Presley, 77; daughter with singer and songwriter Danny Keough, actress Riley Keough, 33; and twin daughters with guitarist and music producer Michael Lockwood, Harper and Finley, 14. She was preceded in death by her father, Elvis Presley, 42; and her son, Benjamin Keough, 27.
Lisa Marie Presley’s life was largely lived in public. Her four weddings made national headlines, especially brief marriages to the celebrities Nicolas Cage and the late Michael Jackson. But Presley always sought to stand on her own, working as a musician and taking on various causes throughout her life, not content to live just in the celebrity that surrounded her family name.
Her work as a musician included both tributes to her father’s unmatchable career and her own skilled singing and songwriting. An early entry into the music world was Presley’s tribute to her father on the 20th anniversary of his death, “Don’t Cry Daddy,” in which she added her own vocals to a recording of his 1969 song. She would record other posthumous duets with her father, including “In the Ghetto” and “I Love You Because.” Presley released three albums and singles including the modest 2003 hit “Lights Out” as well as “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet,” “Thanx,” and a cover of Don Henley’s “Dirty Laundry.”
Presley talked often of her family and being the daughter of arguably the most famous singer ever. In 2012, she told the San Diego Union-Tribune, “It’s not a bad thing, because I’m very proud of my father, my legacy and where I’m from, without question. And I have no problem, even if I sound similar to him at times. But when it’s a contrived, trying to sell myself thing, I won’t go there … I’m not him, I could never be like him, ever, and I don’t want to try. I just want to be a singer-songwriter. I don’t want to be disrespectful about it. But it is a battle and it constantly goes on.”
But Presley and her father were extremely close. Elvis once flew Presley to Idaho after she said she had never seen snow. He named his 1958 Conair 880 private jet the Lisa Marie.
The New York Times noted that her life had been tinged with tragedy, often a hallmark of the Presley family. “She was 9 when her father died in 1977, and she lost others who had been close to her along the way, including her former husband, Michael Jackson. The suicide of her only son, Benjamin Keough, at age 27 in 2020 hit her especially hard, an episode she wrote about movingly last year in an essay for People magazine to mark National Grief Awareness Day.”
After her father’s death, Presley inherited his Graceland estate, and she maintained ownership of the musical landmark until her death. She also owned 15% of Elvis Presley Enterprises, the corporate entity that manages the Elvis Presley trust assets.
Presley will be buried at Graceland in the Meditation Garden next to her son. It is also the final resting place of Elvis; his mother, Gladys Presley; his father, Vernon Presley; and his grandmother Minnie Mae Presley.
A public memorial service for Lisa Marie Presley will be held at Graceland at 9 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 22, 2023.
Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal published January 18, 2023.
A register book for the public will be available daily from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Thursday, January 19, 2023, until Saturday, January 28, 2023 at Pegues, 535 West Jefferson Street, Tupelo, MS, 38804.