Media crews from around the world were camped outside Cedars-Sinai Medical Center this week as they kept tabs on the man we call the “French Elvis,” 66-year-old Johnny Hallyday.

We're not sure what's stranger — that Americans don't know the first thing about Hallyday, or that the media keep putting him in Beverly Hills. The performer is being treated for an infection following back surgery in France. He became seriously ill and doctors induced a comatose state to help him recover. He's now out of a coma and recovering at the hospital, which is in the city of Los Angeles.

Hallyday is said to own a home in the area. European reporters tell CNN that while the pop star would be mobbed in many continental cities, his time in L.A. is spent almost anonymously.

Strangely, he does have a “U.S.” version of his website, which switches it from French to English. And his site has a way-out-West, Route 66 theme (the title of his last tour was Tour 66, which uses a graphic logo that mimics Route 66 road signs). Even his sound (“Quelque chose de Tennessee” features harmonicas and Springsteen-like pianos) can feel Western.

As foreign television crews have set up 24-hour camera positions outside the hospital, training lenses on the eighth floor, where the Frenchman is being treated, only a few domestic reporters have come by to report the global news.

LA Weekly