King of Diamonds – The Neil Diamond Tribute
In 1995 Rob Garrett was personally hired by Paul Revere (of ‘The Raiders”) to portray Neil Diamond in the biggest and most popular “impersonation” type show in the world, “Legends In Concert”. The venue was Honolulu, Hawaii, and the show is that city’ s largest and best theatrical show. What was to be a two-month “trial” engagement for Rob ended up being “indefinite”.
“Neil’s a phenomenon as witnessed by any of his recent sold out concerts. Anytime he decides to hit the tour circuit he breaks attendance records and always ends up as one of the top 5 money grossing concert attractions of the year. He has become this polished consummate performer who doesn’t rely on big production and choreography to make his show work. He’s the last of the breed that I refer to as minstrels, the performers who get on the stage for 2 hours plus with just their guitars and backup band and can still bring an audience to it’s knees. He’s still got it, but unfortunately it seems as if he’s touring less often these days and when he does tour it’s in select places and always sold out way in advance. A lot of people who would like – never get the chance to see him perform. I love the challenge of re-creating the performances of this great musical legend who I hope still has many years of performances left in him.”
In August of 1998, Garrett returned home to Las Vegas and continued to perform intermittently with “Legends” for another 2 years before deciding to go off on his own and create his own ‘Neil Diamond’ tribute show. Since then, he has kept up a steady tour around the country (and occasionally the world), performing in more towns and cities than most tribute artists in the industry. He developed a large, loyal, following and is known worldwide as the ‘’King of Diamonds,’’ North America’s most popular and sought after Neil Diamond tribute act.
What makes him one of the best is his reverence for Diamond, Diamond’s music and how he believes Diamond should be treated.
“I call myself a ‘by the book’ artist,” he explained. “In other words, I rarely do anything on stage that he didn’t do or wouldn’t do. I never step out of character. Garrett’s plan is to keep doing what he’s doing, proving Diamond’s music is still relevant, and his legacy worth preserving.
How does Garrett feel about Diamond’s recent decision to retire from live performances (after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease)?
“I absolutely feel more of a sense of obligation, a good obligation, but it’s still an obligation for me,” he said. “To me, it’s something I never get tired of doing and I have every intention of keeping his legacy going. There’s a lot of people that never got the opportunity to see him