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Old Time Rockers Raise Funds
for Iowa's own Music Museum


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The article, Old-time rockers raise funds for Iowa's own music museum by Courier Staff Writer, , was originally printed in The Courier, Waterloo, Iowa, on April 25, 2002. The Do's & Don'ts performed at an old time Rock 'N' Roll concert for the Iowa Rock 'N' Roll Music Association and the Iowa Rock and Roll History Museum. This benefit concert raised over $5,000. This article has been reproduced in it's entirety with permission granted by Vashon Borich, Marketing/New Media Director, Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, Waterloo Iowa.

Old-time rockers raise funds
for Iowa's own music museum

By ANNE KAPLER

Rock 'n' Roll
Courier Staff Writer

WATERLOO - Keep your eyes open for Elvis sightings next Friday.

Nationally recognized Elvis impersonator Artie Mentz will be in town along with Iowa oldies bands The Escorts/Do's and Don'ts and G.T.O. to kick off Waterloo's newly proclaimed Iowa Rock 'n' Roll Music Association's Oldies Rock 'n' Roll Month.

The three acts will perform in a benefit concert at the Electric Park Ballroom to raise money to build a state rock 'n' roll hall of fame.

"Iowa has a rich (musical) history," said Steve Brown, membership chairman of the association. "At one time there were more ballrooms per capital in Iowa than in any other state. All the major rock 'n' roll stars from the start of rock 'n' roll played the ballrooms."

The Iowa Rock 'n' Roll Music Association was established in 1997 and has been inducting important pieces of Iowa's music history -- from bands to ballrooms -- into the hall of fame since then.

Now, it wants to build a museum adjacent to the Maritime Museum at Arnold's Park in Okoboji to showcase the inductees. If the association raises the $1 million needed to build the museum, it will be among the first state rock 'n' roll museums in the country.

"To be one of the first states in the nation to have our own museum, that would be great," said Ron Crow, vocalist and guitarist for G.T.O.

His Des Moines-based cover band will open and close the show with doo-wop tunes from the late '50s and early '60s.

"We're the good old part of doo-wop rock 'n' roll; we're traditional American rock 'n' roll," Crow said.

The nine-piece band's play list includes more than 80 songs from stars like Ritchie Valens, the Everly Brothers, the Chiffons and the Beach Boys.

The Escorts/Do's and Don'ts will play original and cover tunes from the '50s to early '70s. The band, which was formed in 1959, was one of the first full-time rock groups to form in eastern Iowa and recorded 12 records.

In 1966, band members Dick and Zelda Sherman, Roger Booth and Dick Burns signed with Red Bird Records, and their single "I Wonder" hit the Billboard charts that summer. Originally known as the Escorts, they changed their name to The Do's and Don'ts at the record label's request.

Burns no longer plays with the group, but the other three original members are still together, and they've added two new members, Frank Glaser (a former member of Iowa Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame inductee Al & The Untouchables) and Rick Sherman.

, the band's bassist, said the group has been in high demand since it was inducted into the Iowa Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

"It's been a ball because it's so much fun," he says. "People come up and say, 'I didn't know you guys were still around. You played at our prom,' or 'You played at our wedding.'"

Next up, Artie Mentz will perform as Elvis Presley and play a set with his band, the Pink Catillacs. Mentz was named by "Rolling Stone" as one of the top 10 Elvis impersonators in the mid-'80s. He has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey show and "Mondo Elvis," a 1990 documentary on Elvis fans.

Mentz will don a white jumpsuit and cape to perform as Elvis, Vegas-style.

"We're doing that show that never was," says Pink Catillacs drummer Bobby Greenwood.

The three bands will bring a variety of danceable oldies to the ballroom.

"Even though they all play oldies music, each (band) brings a unique style," Brown said.

The May 4 show will begin at 7 p.m., with doors opening at 6. Tickets are $10 and available at Electric Park Ballroom, at West Music, 6233 University Ave., Cedar Falls, and online at www.IowaRockNRoll.com. See pictures of the show.

Reprinted with permission (c) 2004 The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier.

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