b. Jack Davis, 14 May 1934, Hackney, London, England. The ex-boxer and cartoon cameraman was discovered singing in a small club in London’s West End by noted agent Dennis Preston. He was given his stage name in a competition by readers of Patrick Doncaster’s pop music column in the Daily Mirror newspaper. This pop ballad singer’s first single ‘A House, A Car And A Wedding Ring’, a Jerry Lordan composition with musical direction from Harry Robinson. The Decca Records release failed to create much interest in the UK but charted in the US in early 1958. This led to his visiting America for promotion and appearing on the shows of Alan Freed and Dick Clark amongst others. Preston, continued to work as a cameraman, until he had his biggest UK hit in 1959 with a cover of the Fleetwoods’ ‘Mr. Blue’, which narrowly missed the Top 10. He later appeared in the film Climb Up The Wall with Craig Douglas and Russ Conway. In all, he had four UK Top 40 singles, the last, ‘Marry Me’ which peaked at number 14, was the winning song from the 1961 ITV television Song Contest. After leaving Decca he recorded without success on Emerald.
In the 60s, Preston emigrated to Australia and worked initially as a nightclub performer and television host before turning to acting. He has appeared in films and on television including the long running crime drama, Homicide and soap opera, Bellbird.