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Al Bowlly, blue plaque in London

 
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John W



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
Posts: 3360
Location: Warwickshire, UK

PostPosted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 3:41 pm    Post subject: Al Bowlly, blue plaque in London Reply with quote

After many years in progress, 2013 sees English Heritage erect their Blue Plaque commemorating Al Bowlly’s contribution to British entertainment and culture.

Saturday 30th November 2013, ceremony ~ 12.30-1.00pm at Charing Cross Mansions, 26 Charing Cross Road


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John W
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FleetingEileenM



Joined: 30 Mar 2010
Posts: 5064
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 4:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's good news John! I always love to hear his records played and his voice is unmistakable.
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becky sharp



Joined: 01 Dec 2008
Posts: 5829

PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I echo Eileen's sentiments...

Here is a poem about Al taken from a website about him...

Say, Don't You Remember…?

You Sang; I had no share in all your years,

Your years were spent and gone before mine came,

You rolled along the prairie moon and stars,

Made moments sparkle like glass chandeliers,

When wireless sets broadcast your crackling fame

Amid romance, gardenias and guitars.



Then, from West End hotels, on radio,

Those bands played through the palms and polished plants,

Starched Maestros cued you to the microphone,

And Marcel-waves would waft by Art Deco,

When shining pairs slid smoothly to the dance,

As you embellished Noble, Fox and Stone.



And hardship looked for something in the air,

From warmed-up valves and sun-rayed Bakelite.

They sailed Hawaii's Blue to Capri's Isle,

Drab drudges dancing tangos from despair,

Transported on the music of the night,

Your Valentino charm and Latin smile.



Paris perhaps, for some, by 'Handley- Page',

Or first class north, aboard 'The Flying Scot'

On a steamer, underneath an ocean moon,

All evidence of ordered, golden age.

For most the grindstone ground each meagre lot

Between, an hour of dreams; - a time to croon.



All through that dark and disparate decade

You conjured Moon- love from a grey world's gloom;

A dinner date, A midnight rendezvous,

'Goodnight Sweetheart',- 'A Penny Serenade.'

When glitter-balls rushed rainbows round the room;

Those dancing days…The very thought of you.



Ephemeral, you stood at the abyss,

(Though life and love and melodies were sweet),

As callous fate blew cruel winds along

To you, in London on a night like this;

Springtime, Wartime .... Landmine - Jermyn Street

Reverberates, the echo of a song.



And so, I'll stroll once more down Memory Lane,

And moonlight on the highway I shall find:

Be still my heart, I hear faint harmony…

It's you, you sing again, "Auf Wiedersehen,"

Both night and day, around and through my mind.

Old phantom Philomel…You're haunting me.


http://www.memorylane.org.uk/the_al_bowlly_circle.htm
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Colin



Joined: 26 Sep 2013
Posts: 916

PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How funny. Only yesterday I dug out my pristine double-LP soundtrack album of the BBC TV series which paid tribute to him - "Pennies From Heaven" . I thought it would be fun to digitise it and play it in the car.
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John W



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
Posts: 3360
Location: Warwickshire, UK

PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember watching and enjoying the Pennies From Heaven series, I'd already been hooked on Al Bowlly and other 30s singers/bands through my old record collection. And that year (1978) I attended a gathering of some of the surviving musicians, most of them were aged about 65-70 then.
The first LP of Pennies From Heaven came out that year, then years later I found a triple LP in a charity shop, and last year I bought a DVD of the TV series from Amazon, still have to watch it Smile

The soundtrack for the series is 1930s music but it's not just a tribute to Al Bowlly, there's a lot of bands featured that he didn't record with like Henry Hall, Jack Hylton and Ambrose, and there's one American record a lovely recording by Connee Boswell.
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Schizoidman



Joined: 20 Sep 2010
Posts: 1135
Location: Rural West Sussex

PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pennies From Heaven was quite simply the best TV I've ever watched. I still remember when it was broadcast: March/April 1978. I still have the vinyl soundtrack LP and the DVD. Bob 'Oskins at his best.
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Colin



Joined: 26 Sep 2013
Posts: 916

PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Schizoidman wrote:
Pennies From Heaven was quite simply the best TV I've ever watched. I still remember when it was broadcast: March/April 1978. I still have the vinyl soundtrack LP and the DVD. Bob 'Oskins at his best.


Bob Hoskins was fabulous. The female lead was played by Cheryl.....?

I worked briefly with Bob when I was a student before he was offered. " Pennies". He was presenting the Adult Literacy programmes called "On The Move" and I was an unpaid runner on two programmes!

He was exactly the same bloke off-camera as he was on cam! I thought he was utterly fabulous in the 1980s film "Mona Lisa" too.
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oldraver



Joined: 18 Dec 2006
Posts: 674
Location: London

PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cheryl Campbell, I think. I saw her starring on stage with Michael Crawford in Flowers For Algernon...sandwiched inbetween Barnum and Phantom, I think. Either way, it lasted about six weeks, before being taken off.

But I digress..I love Al Bowlly.
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Colin



Joined: 26 Sep 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cheryl Campbell. Yes.
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John W



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
Posts: 3360
Location: Warwickshire, UK

PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The British Pathe archive have recently restored one of Al Bowlly's short films and put it out free on Youtube, very nice of them to do so,


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cr4ncMR5EVQ
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