Thursday, August 26, 2010

Forgotten Music: Ral Donner

Ral Donner is sometimes thought of as the first Elvis impersonator because his voice sounded so much like Presley's. In fact, on some of his recordings Donner sounded so much like Elvis that people thought The King had actually made them under another name. This was long before anyone ever thought about dressing like Elvis and trying to recreate his act. In the late '5os, everybody was trying to sound like Elvis. Donner didn't even have to try.

Sadly for Donner's career, just sounding like Elvis wasn't enough. Though he made quite a few recordings, some of them good ones, Donner had only one Top Ten hit. He pretty much disappeared after 1962, though he did narrate This Is Elvis in 1981, once again using that voice that sounded like Presley's. Here's one of his songs. You can decide for yourself how much he sounded like Elvis.


Anonymous said...

He did sound Elvis-like on "You Don't Know What You've Got (Until You Lose It)" but I always thought Terry Stafford's "Suspicion" sounded more like Elvis.


Scott Cupp said...

And for good Elvis sound-a-likes, you can't miss with Rogert Gordon and Link Wray on the two albums they did together.

George said...

I'm with Jeff on Terry Stafford. His voice was uncannily like Elvis'.

Bill Crider said...

Stafford had an even shorter career than Donner did.