Extended/Personal Bio from Q.
I wanted to write a more personal, extended bio for my website to talk a little more about how I got started, people I’ve met, and the passion I have for the stage. I get asked all the time how I got started and it begins with my mom making a suggestion to me. I grew up in a small town called Argos, Indiana that is one of those one stop light, everyone knows everybody, K-12 in one building kind of towns. Our Marshall County 4-H Fair was having entertainment for the big Friday night show and it was a Rock ‘n’ Roll Oldies group out of Ohio called Sh-Boom, who later became Act Four.
I was 9 years old and listened to records and eight tracks we had and liked the music but like other kids had to listen to today’s music to fit in. Well I put up a little bit of a fuss and mom said, “Just go for thirty minutes and if you don’t like it you can go.” Well…I ended up staying for the entire 3 hour show, buying all their tapes, t-shirt, 8x10 pictures, and a hat! I loved it! I was just enthralled with what I just witnessed! They had great harmonies, dance moves, and comedy. But the thing that really stuck with me after all these years, as we travelled for many years after that performance to see them, is how they would stay after the end of the show until the last autograph was written, the last picture was taken, the last hug/handshake was given. They stayed and signed everything I bought that night, while asking me fun questions to be more personable with me. After that I went home and started playing the records, learning the songs, and dancing! I had a little karaoke machine with a dual tape deck player and a very generic microphone with 10 feet of cable so I couldn’t really go far!
Well I would take that at the age of 11-12 and do little shows wherever I could, in a friend’s basement, my dad’s office in front of everyone that worked with him, and a bowling alley even though you couldn’t hear me with my 50 watt system. As I tried to get some of my friends involved to start a four man group I heard how that music isn’t cool and not interested. So one cold day in January as Dad was helping me do my paper route, on the radio in my dad’s truck, I heard about an Elvis Contest in South Bend, IN. I was 14 and I said, “I want to do that.” Dad called and said, “My 14 year old kid wants to be in your Elvis contest.” They told him to send in the entry fee and next thing I know I’m off to the show. You had to sing 3 songs for prelims and if you made finals 2 more songs. I had not a clue, along with my Mom, Dad, Aunt Cindy, and her date (who we never saw again after that long night of hours of Elvis music,) what I was getting us into. I had one sport jacket, had to learn “Wear My Ring” on the way to South Bend in case I made finals as I only knew 4 Elvis songs, and another Elvis guy put stage make-up on me as I had some terrible acne!
I ended up winning that contest as I was something new that came along. All the jumpsuit guys and here I am young, doing 50’s Elvis and of course mimicking Elvis’s voice and moves. After that night I just went from contest to contest, Memphis, other guys' shows as they’d invite me to sing a few. We traveled anywhere to sing and the Elvis “thing” just took off!
While in high school I performed on the road, on cruises, on the Ricky Lake Show, and was filmed for the Almost Elvis Documentary when I was 15! I came to school late a lot and the staff was cool with it as long as I kept my grades up. At many shows in the beginning, I’d hear “Welcome to the stage the high-energy Quentin Flagg” as I was finishing up math and science homework! Honestly that is how I started and I loved every minute of it! Fast forward 8 years, I wanted to get back to my Sh-Boom days of performing the Rock ‘n’ Roll of the 50’s & 60’s that I grew up with.
At Elvis contests and certain shows, I’d hear that I move too much, as I truly just wanted to be me and had all this energy to release. Maybe I did move more than people remember Elvis dancing, as I was a bit crazy on stage. So I started doing a few Elvis songs followed by “Mack the Knife,” then a couple more Elvis songs followed by “Rock Around the Clock.” I started making the transition. The Elvis world was great to me and the fans are still awesome and I still have the privilege of doing Elvis Festivals today, and I have Elvis music in my sets at every show.
Now doing many styles of music, I’m very happy being me on stage. While finding myself on stage along the way I found a new group, to me anyway, The Rat Pack! I love the way they incorporated jokes and made the audience feel like they were just hanging out with “the guys!” That is why I love being honest on stage with one liners, whether they are funny or I hear the groans, it just adds to the personal touch I try to show on stage. I just bottle up everything for the stage and hit it hard and strong.
As I traveled all over I had the opportunity to meet a few people through the years. Starting with the Elvis world, I was able to travel and tour with Sonny West who was one of the Memphis Mafia members. I performed with The Jordanaires who are on many of Elvis’s recordings and shows. Also with DJ Fontana with whom I had the opportunity to perform with as he played drums behind me! I did a few fundraisers for Marion Cocke, she was Elvis’s private nurse, for St. Jude’s. I had the pleasure to get to know and share the stage with Al Dvorin, Elvis' emcee and friend! He made famous, the line, "Elvis has left the Buidling!" I met some of the female actors who played opposite Elvis on the big screen! One of my beyond cool moments was meeting and playing on stage with Jim Belushi! While doing a Bobby Darin Festival in Vegas I had the opportunity to meet Wayne Newton! Adding a little more personal touch is meeting some wrestlers on the road while in the airport. There is so much more I could put on here however I’ll leave it at that for now. If you are able to come out to my show just have fun and make sure to visit with me afterwards as I’d love to be able to say thank you for coming to the show! “Rock On,” Q.