The Elvis Wall of Fame and replica ‘Graceland’ gates are situated at Kelly Reserve and were erected to honour pioneers of the Australian music industry. Each year, music fans gather on the first day of the Festival to celebrate the career of an Australian music legend and unveil a plaque in recognition of their achievements.
In 2017, Parkes Elvis Festival posthumously honours Australian musician, the Digby ‘Dig’ Richards.
Join Digby’s brother Doug Richards, Parkes Shire Mayor Cr Ken Keith, friends and dignitaries as we pay tribute to Digby’s brilliant career.
Western Road Liners runs a shuttle bus service to this location. See bus schedule for further details.
Digby ‘Dig’ Richards
(12 September 1940 – 17 February 1983)
Digby George “Dig” Richards was an Australian rock and roll singer from Dunedoo, NSW. Best known as the lead singer of the R’Jays after he formed the group with Jon Hayton in the 1950s, Richards has an extensive portfolio of life achievements.
In 1959, following becoming the third rock and roll act to be signed by Festival Records, the R’Jays released their first single ‘I Wanna Love You’. Written by Richards’ 15-year-old brother, Douglas, it peaked at No. 7 on radio station 2UE’s Top 40. The group’s second single, ‘I’m Through’, also written by Doug, followed in September and reached the Top 40.
Richards was most active with the R’Jays during the late 1950s and early 1960s. In 1959, he was the first Australian rock and roll artist to record a 12″ LP record in Australia. In the same year, the R’Jays became the first group to play live on pop music television show, Bandstand.
The 1960s saw Richards focus on his venture as a solo artist, adopting a country style of music. Over this period, Richards undertook a number of personal ventures including dancing and singing lessons to become a musical theatre actor, playwriter and television host. During this time Richards also continued to record and release his own music, with over 10 Top 40 singles released between 1962 and 1974.
Richards continued recording and performing until his last album, ‘If You Could Read My Mind’ in December 1982.
On the 17 February 1983, Digby Richards died of pancreatic cancer, aged 42.
Past Elvis Wall of Fame recipients
1995 Johnny O’Keefe
1996 Col Joy AM and the Joy Boys
1997 Little Pattie OAM
1998 Brian Henderson AM
1999 The De Kroo Brothers
2000 Judy Stone
2001 Jade Hurley OAM
2002 Lonnie Lee
2003 Normie Rowe AM
2004 Johnny Young
2005 Noeleen Batley
2006 Lucky Starr
2007 Johnny Devlin
2008 Billy Thorpe AM
2009 Glenn A. Baker
2010 Dinah Lee
2011 Barry Crocker AM
2012 Kamahl OAM
2013 John Paul Young OAM
2014 Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum AM
2015 Gary ‘Angry’ Anderson AM
2016 Robie Porter (‘Rob E.G.’)
2017 Digby ‘Dig’ Richards