The first image of Al Jolson seen in The Jolson Story is neither Al Jolson nor Larry Parks, but child actor Scotty Beckett. But the voice heard when Scotty opened his mouth belonged to a young Rudy Wissler, whose uncredited voice characterized the young Al Jolson in the movie. For several years, Rudy Wissler delighted Jolson Festival audiences with his personality and presentation. Click for a sample of Rudy Wissler's 2001 Jolson Festival Performance.
Enjoy these songs from the soundtrack of The Jolson Story with Rudy Wissler providing the voice of the young Al Jolson:
Rudy's career did not end with The Jolson Story. He has been in numerous movies, and musical theatre as well. A winner on the Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts program, his beautiful tenor voice has been heard on radio and TV programs throughout the years.
He's toured with such varied performances as barbershop quartet, opera, church choirs and nightclubs.
Elected an Honorary Member of the International Al Jolson Society, Rudy continued his association with the World's Greatest Entertainer, passing away on January 11, 2007, anticipating the 2007 Jolson Festival.
Calling his new CD "Rudy Wissler... A Musical Anthology or... 'Life After Asa'" just about says it all. After his great stint singing Jolson songs to Scotty Beckett's young Al Jolson, Rudy Wissler forged his own path on radio, and later, with Barbershop Quartet singing. Sampling the gamut from Jolson Story cuts through Eddie Fisher covers to great Barbershop harmony, this CD demonstrates the versatility of Rudy Wissler. If you click the cover of the CD shown, you can hear Rudy and the Pacificaires, an award winning quartet, deliver their "Jolson Medley." Watch for information about ordering this CD once again, following the passing of this great entertainer.