Video: Simon bids to break Elvis Presley world record

WELL, it's one for the money, two for the show, three for the... world record!

Jonathan Barnes

WELL, it's one for the money, two for the show, three for the... world record!

Elvis Presley impersonator Simon Goldsmith is hoping to shake up the record books by a setting a new standard for the “longest Elvis singing marathon”.

The 36-year-old van driver aims to sing songs by the King of Rock 'n' Roll non-stop for more than 43 hours to beat the current Guinness World Record.


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But he won't exactly have the bright lights of Las Vegas as a backdrop for the challenge, due to start on May 7.

The building he's not intending to leave for nearly two days will be the White Lion pub in Lower Ufford, near Woodbridge.

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Simon, from Little Bealings, will be attempting to beat the official Guinness record of 43 hours and 11 minutes set by Thomas “Curtis” Gathje in Heide, Germany, in 2004.

And while that target will always be on his mind, he also hopes to raise as much money as he can for the St Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich.

“I've been a huge fan of Elvis ever since my mum won an album in a Radio Orwell competition on the 10th anniversary of his death in 1987,” said Simon, who performs his tribute act under the stage name Harry Isaac Presley.

“It's just that incredible voice - and those great rock n' roll songs.

“I always thought I could sing a little bit like him, but it wasn't until New Year's Eve 2005 when I did my first 'Elvis' gig at The Three Horseshoes in Charsfield.

“I've done regular gigs since then but I love crazy ideas and I wanted to do something a bit special, so I looked up some world records and this one really appealed to me.

“I've got no problem in staying awake for that long, it's just the effect on my vocal chords, so I'm going to have to work on some tricks to keep my voice fresh.

“It's a daunting challenge and hard to imagine performing for that long, but I'm determined to do it.”

Simon, who also plays drums in a rock band and bass guitar in a folk group, said he was inspired to raise money for the hospice after the care and kindness staff showed his father, David, who died at the hospice last April aged 58 after a battle with cancer.

“Most people who come into contact with the hospice think they deserve recognition. This is a way of saying thanks,” he said.

The challenge, which will be held in a marquee at the village pub, will see Simon crooning his way through a repertoire of more than 40 Elvis songs, including The King's classics Heartbreak Hotel, Love Me Tender, The Wonder of You and Suspicious Minds.

And he certainly won't be lonesome through the night as the attempt has to take place under strict conditions, with stewards, independent witnesses, medical officers, video footage and logbooks.

He'll also be cheered on by a supporting cast of family and friends, including partner Fiona Forrest.

“I'm really looking forward to it,” said Simon, who works for delivery firm DHL, which has pledged to help with fundraising.

“If we can raise lots of money for the hospice and set a new world record in the process, it'll be the best concert I've ever given.”

To sponsor Simon in his world record attempt, go to www.justgiving.com/elvisworldrecord. For more information about the attempt and Harry Isaac Presley, visit www.harryisaacpresley.co.uk

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