The Jazz Singer Cometh
by Holly Strother
Wednesday, October 4, 2006 11:38 AM MDT
He has it all: the hair, the clothes, the moves, and most importantly, the voice.
The “King of Diamonds” Rob Garrett will perform two shows of his legendary Neil Diamond impersonation to benefit the Casper Eagles Lodge and its charities on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6-7, at 6 p.m. in the Eagles Lodge at 306 N. Durbin.
Garrett said he began doing the impersonation of Diamond about 11 years ago. He auditioned for a spot on the Las Vegas show “Legends in Concert” after quitting his oldies rock band of 15 years “Rock ‘n’ Roll Heaven,” he added.
“It was time to try something different,” he said. Garrett was cast for the show by John Stuart and early rock legend Paul Revere of Paul Revere and the Raiders.
When it came to choosing his character, Garrett settled on Diamond.
“I just love his music,” Garrett said. “It’s popular no matter where you go.”
Former band members who played with Neil Diamond have commented on Garrett’s impersonation stating “You have got him down,” according to Garrett’s biography on the Web site www.neildiamondlookalike.com.
Garrett’s said his favorite Diamond song right now is “I Am, I Said.”
“It’s inspirational and meaningful to me,” he said. Another favorite right now is “America” due to current events, he added.
Eagles member and event organizer, Dexter Tozier, said he immediately thought of Garrett and his show when they began planning this fundraiser.
“I’ve known Rob for about nine years, so he is a personal friend of mine, and the fact that he’s excellent.” Tozier said.
“I hoped to try to get him to Casper in some venue and this fundraiser seemed like an excellent opportunity.
“We support nine charities here locally,” he said. “Normally, each month they have a benefit dinner, so all the proceeds from that — plus we sponsor a Sunday morning breakfast — all go to these charities or to the charity of the month.”
October’s charity is the Cancer Foundation, but Tozier said this benefit dinner’s proceeds will be split among all of the charities.
Tozier said Garrett portrays the Diamond of the “Jazz Singer” era, 1975-1981, complete with sparkling shirts and all his exuberant energy.
He also has two CDs available of his own recordings that will be available at the show, Tozier added.
Tickets are $30 each and available at the Eagles Lodge, S.A.M.E. Music, by phone at 235-5130, or 266-6104, or from any Eagles member.
This event is cosponsored by S.A.M.E. Music, Parkway Plaza Hotel and Convention Centre, the Horseshoe Bar and Cowboy Saloon & Dance Hall.