|Matt Lucas, Still Movin' On
Matt Lucas, was born in Memphis Tn. in 1935. He was influenced by the big bands, jazz, combos, and then along came rock 'n' Roll. The rest made history. Starting in 1953, playing the strip clubs, rythum & blues bars, from Los Angeles to Chicago & St louis, and ultimately following his dream to crash the gates of Hollywood, he has been there and done it.
Then around 1956 Matt met a young Narvel Felts, who was playing with the Jerry Mercer Band. Later Narvel formed his own group, of which Matt played the drums & vocals, which began his rock 'n' roll career. Then later Matt formed his own band "The Matt Lucas Trio" and hired Narvel Felts as lead guitar player. Matt's first release "Trading Kisses" made some noise and charted locally, but nothing like his second release "Movin On". Narvel Felts played lead guitar on this release, recorded at Sonic Studios in Memphis. J.W. Grubbs played electric bass. Originally released on Renay Records, Memphis, it was picked up by Mercury's "Smash" Label, and started climbing the Billboard and Cashbox charts. Becoming a world wide hit.
Then along came "Ooby Dooby", on Smash, "Maybelline", "Put Me Down", and "Turn On Your Love light", all on Dot Records. This contributed to Matt's popularity, and demanded tours in Canada as well as the US. Home based in Toronto, Matt continued performing the cicuit with Ray Smith, Ronnie Hawkins and others. It was during this time in 1963 he was awarded "Artist of the year in Begium". Releasing "I'm Moving On" again in Canada, and "The Old Man" which charted in the top 30, and the album "I've Paid My Dues". Matt was awarded a Gold Record for "Moving On". In 1975 he released his only Disco single "You've Got A Love" which broke into the top 40, and climbed to number 1 in Canada.
Matt has been included in Billy Poore's book, "Rockabilly, a Forty Year Journey", Sun Record's, "The History of the Memphis Sound", by Colin Escott, "The A-Z of Rock 'n' Roll" by Grahm Woods, Billboard Magazine's "Top Pop Singles", by Joel Whitburn, the book "Whos Who In Music", a Canadian publication, and became a member of The Rockville International Hall of Fame, the Netherlands, in 1969.
In 1975 Matt moved to St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. Where he played the Frenchmans Reef Resort Hotel, until right after Elvis Presley's death. In 1977, he met his present wife Barbara while performing in Pittsburgh, Pa. In Florida, he performed on the cruise ships out of Miami, and Ft. Lauderdale, until 1990. He then became the Steamboat Director for the Delta Queen Steamboat Company, and Barb was tour manager for the same. Cruising New Orleans, Minneapolis, and other ports. After numerous appearances, from the not so glamerous night spots, to the bright lights of Las Vegas, and being inducted into The Rockabilly Hall of Fame. Matt has not changed his style or lost his ability to entertain the crowd, and leave them wanting more.
The new Millineum finds Matt performing in Denmark, Sweden, (where he is known as the white blues wonder), Canada, and throughout the United States. Then comes another stage in the career of Matt lucas. In April of 2000, Matt was asked to perform at the 3 day Rockabilly Fest for the ground breaking of The International Rockabilly Hall of Fame Museum. Matt's been out on the road rocking long before they called it rock 'n' roll. He's been called "The Jerry Lee" of the drums, The Porno-billy Cat, and Yellowman in the islands of the Caribbean. One thing for sure... Matt Lucas Rocks!
Courtesy of Matt Lucas, used with permission