|Don Deal, The Eddie Cochran Connection
Don Deal was born a farm boy in Honey Creek, Iowa. He was interested in music from childhood on and was discovered by Smoky Rodgers while singing in the back room of Bert Keefers Music Store. Rodgers took Don to San Diego where they worked the Bostonian Ball Room three nights a week and did a live television show from Tijuana, Mexico five days a week. Don's professional singing and recording career began more than four decades ago. His first 45 single was "Cryin' In One Eye" b/w "Broken Hearted Fellow" on Cash 1028 (1956), a fine example of the west coast honky-tonk sound of the mid-fifties, later popularized by such luminaries as Buck Owens and Merle Haggard. Memorable fact is that the late great Eddie Cochran was on this record too, and that's probably the reason that this 45 (as well as many other Don Deal 50s and 60s releases) are much sought after by record collectors.
Next Don signed with a small label, ERA Records, located very near the corner of Sunset & Vine, in Hollywood California. His first ERA recording, "Unfaithful Diane" b/w "Devil Of Deceit" (Era 45-1039, 1957) was a hit. Other Era releases followed: "My Blind Date" b/w "Even Then" (Era 45-1051, 1957), "You'd Look Good With A Tear In Your Eye" b/w "She Was Here, But She's Gone" (Era 45-1060, 1958), "The First Teen-Ager" b/w "Sweet Love" (Era 45-1070, 1958) and "A Chance Is All I Ask" b/w "Just Thought I'd Call" (Era 45-1077, 1958). A previously unissed song titled "Don't Push" popped up on a compilation album issued in the U.K. titled "Hollywood Rock & Roll" on Chiswick Records, 1977. This album was re-issued on Ace Records in 1990.
Don toured with Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins for a few years and he then moved to Capital Records where he had a hit with the song "A-11" b/w "You'll Get Use To Being Lonely" (Capitol 5028, 1963). Then along with his producer Nick Venet, he moved to MGM Records doing well in the charts with "Lyin' Again" b/w "After The Boy Gets The Girl" (MGM K13235, 1964). Don did most of the Record Hops, Network TV shows, etc. including Dick Clark's American Bandstand. The songs that got him there were "Unfaithful Diane" and "Blind Date".
Don is also a songwriter and his songs have been recorded by artists such as Eddie Arnold, Sonny James, Hank Snow, Perry Como, Dean Martin, Michael Parks, etc. He now lives on a farm with his wife near Branson, Missouri, and is still making music and producing records. His more recent CD releases "Tribute To Wynn Stewart" (DonJim Records 1216), "Straight Ahead" (DonJim Records 1217), "Somewhere" (DonJim Records 1222) and "From Time To Time" (DonJim Records 1223) are available from Don's own website, where he also offers CD re-releases of his 50s and 60s singles. With only 2 songs per CD, these are actually quite expensive, but considering the fact that these tunes have not been recently re-issued, it might be the only way to get these fabulous recordings.
Compiled by The BlackCat, 2002