Jason Darnell aka Duggie Dean, was born Douglas Owen White 29th May 1935 in Hampstead London He was raised in the village of Parkend in the Forest Of Dean Gloucestershire. He had numerous low paid and menial jobs before joining the Royal Air Force after WW2. He formed a couple of troop entertainment groups before departing after 3 years service. Doug (Jason) and his then comedy and musical partner set up shop on Barry Island where he learned the ropes of theatre entertainment and slowly began performing across South Wales. He had numerous name changes as his status improved in cabaret, performing up and down the seaside circuit in England.

After touring the UK circuit Doug was asked to top the bill on the P & O Empress Cruiser, with the Eric Winstone orchestra, and it was on one of his cruises to Canada that he changed his stage name to Jason Darnell.

Cruises to Australia were Jason’s favourite – he met his future manager and producer Ian McCallum on one of these trips, and he was invited to appear on the TV show New Faces, which he won first place representing Sydney. Later on another visit to Australia he represented Melbourne, and once again won first place.

He was then engaged to perform throughout the Federal Hotel Circuit which was a major chain in Australia at the time. He gained a lot of fans and good friends on this tour, and Jason was then signed by Festival Records and released his first record for them. The song was the ballad “Love Is All” in 1973 - his recording was requested and played regularly on all the popular radio shows. The “B” side of the record was “Sail Along Silv'ry Moon” it went into some Oz charts, and was particularly popular with listening audiences in Tasmania. So popular was Jason in Tasmania, and he was so taken with the people and scenery, he left Melbourne and moved to his new home in Hobart.

After a few enjoyable years in Hobart, which included hosting his own weekly TV and Radio shows, he returned to Sydney where he appeared on all the big Saturday night Television shows. Next, Jason went onto star in various touring musical theatre groups and played the role of “Prince Charming” for more than 3 years with a travelling company that swept across Australia and New Zealand. Doug is still going strong as of 2009 and still doing cabaret.

For download are both sides of his 1973 single. My personal favourites is "Sail Along Silv'ry Moon". Enjoy!




  1. how can he be born in 1935 and served in WWII? I don't think the RAF took 10 year olds.

  2. Slip of the keyboard, rickdog. Change the line "in WW2" to "after WW2" and all is well. My typo. Tom

  3. I'm glad to see that Jason is still performing in cabaret. He has a fine voice and a lovely way with a ballad.

    I have happy memories of singing off stage with him years ago as we sped through the English countryside in a Caravette. He has a brilliant flair for harmony. Happy days, Jason!


  4. I used to be a friend of his many years ago. Any way I can get in touch?

    1. Hi Jim I've recently met jason drop me a message and I'll pass on his number

  5. Lyn and I lost a good friend when Jason returned to the UK. We loved the catch a star shows at the Sydney Musos club, Jason was an agent by then, occasionally doing gigs in the Club scene. Jason signed me up for extra jobs doing TV and adverts, was a lot of fun. Where did the 40 years go?

  6. Hi Tom.
    Thanks for the nice write up and comments.
    Thanks to all the nice people of Australia who helped me have a very successful showbiz career.
    I am now retired....still sing when l can.
    My health has'nt been too good so l am now in a very nice care/nursing home. LIGHTHOUSE
    WIRRAL CH 45 OJZ If anyone would like to get in touch.
    I have made a video for LIGHTHOUSE LODGE a few weeks ago. It is on their FACEBOOK
    Thanks again Tom...l am so grateful.
    Kindest regards to you and everyone JASON DARNELL

    1. Helloo, it is Bob and Lyn in OZ, are you OK, has been years, could not find you. Denver is 42 now with twin girls, we are OK living in villa at 35 Davies St Kincumber 2251. bob@ozepool.com