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Donnie Iris

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Biography

Donnie Iris was a member of the group The Jaggerz (the one-hit wonder responsible for 1970’s #2 hit “The Rapper”). After the Jaggerz broke up, Iris toured with Wild Cherry, whose 1976 smash “Play That Funky Music” had made them a hot property into the end of the decade. It was during this period that he became acquainted with his future partner Mark Avsec, then playing keyboards for Wild Cherry. Unfortunately, Wild Cherry was another one-hit wonder, and Iris was out of a job by 1980. But Iris and Avsec, and their new band, The Cruisers, returned to the pop charts in the early ’80s several times. He scored minor hits with the songs “Ah, Leah!” (reached #29 on the Billboard charts), “Love is Like a Rock,” and “My Girl.”

Born Dominic Ierace in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania, Iris began singing at weddings at age five, and by eight was performing on local television and entering talent contests. When his voice changed, he took up the drums but later got back into singing while in high school. A self-taught guitarist, he formed Donnie & the Donnells while in college.

Aside from his hits (“Ah, Leah!” still gets FM airplay nationwide), Iris and The Cruisers were unable to achieve major success outside of the Pittsburgh area, but still record and perform in the Ohio Valley to this day.

Donnie Iris and The Cruisers released their most recent album, Ellwood City, in the summer of 2006.

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  • MXB2001

    Youtube vid? All sortsa crap on YT, gotta take the bad with the good I guess.

    10 Mar 2012 Reply
  • remik3_

    whoever loaded that video of Ah Leah, ought to be SHOT!!! And Donnie Iris should sue this company for having it on here; to say that that is him is truely slanderous, not to mention it's in violation of Federal copyright laws, and last but certainly NOT the least it SUCKS!!! (as geeky as he Donnie seems - yeah kinda looks like Buddy Holly, Elvis Costello, the guy from Talking Heads and many others; he's a really good artist... ...not a poser wanna be.)

    29 Nov 2011 Reply
  • jmd420

    Dawnnie Ahris n' @.

    10 Mar 2011 Reply
  • Hellsbells1993

    I remember this guy would always appear on ads for Armstrong cable.

    17 Aug 2010 Reply
  • chadderack

    Love will rock you. Never stop you. Ahhhhhh..... Love. Is. Like. A. Rock.

    12 Jun 2009 Reply
  • MasterOfPizza99

    DONNIE AH-RISSS!!!1

    25 Feb 2009 Reply
  • rjststoner

    good song ah leah from a pa. artist

    25 Dec 2008 Reply
  • willy1time

    Why don't they have a listing for the Elwood City Cd? I have been listening to it off of Donnie's website

    12 Dec 2008 Reply
  • DanAbnrml9

    Ah! Leah! is one of the most perfect power-pop songs ever made.

    16 May 2008 Reply
  • ChadFromCanada

    He's great and King Cool is an awesome album.

    23 Apr 2007 Reply
  • 8thlight

    Are you a Steelers fan?

    8 Apr 2007 Reply
  • mon40

    New event created.....anyone see the show out side three rivers stadium the second to last game the pirates played there? http://www.last.fm/event/89607

    20 Dec 2006 Reply

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