I felt a pang of sadness on hearing of the death of Ross MacManus, who left us on either the 24th or 25th November (depending on which obituary you’re looking at). He started out as a jazz trumpeter, sang with the Joe Loss Orchestra in the 1950s and ’60s, was father to Declan, and became something of an institution in the UK thanks to an advertisement for R Whites Lemonade, which ran on British telly for 11 years.
The ad features Ross on vocals and acting, while Declan sings backing vocals, three years before he re-named himself Elvis (along with the surname of one of Ross’ pseudonyms – Day Costello). He repaid the favour by playing trumpet on “Out of Our Idiot” and “Mighty Like a Rose,” while an LP he made in 1972, Elvis Presley’s Golden Hits Sung By Big Ross and the Memphis Sound, was re-released in 2008 under the title of Elvis’s Dad Sings Elvis.
And so, by way of tribute, here is his greatest hit.