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Stanley HOLLOWAY (1890 – 1982)
The Lion and Albert – The Classic Monologues
LIVING ERA CD AJA 5483 [76:53]



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1. The Lion and Albert (Marriott Edgar; 1932) [3:15]
Rec. 16th March 1932
2. With her head tucked underneath her arm (R. Harris Weston, Robert Weston, Bert Lee; 1934) [4:41]
Rec. 7th September 1934
3. The Beefeater (Robert P. Weston, Bert Lee) [3:50]
Rec.7th September 1934
4. Three ha’pence a foot (Marriott Edgar) [4:09]
Rec. 16th March 1932
5. Old Sam (No.1) – Part1: Pick oop tha’ musket (Stanley Holloway) [3:50]
Rec.27th October 1930
6. Old Sam (No.1) – Part2:’Alt! Who goes theer? (Stanley Holloway) [3:59]
Rec. 27th October 1930
7. The Runcorn Ferry (Tuppence per person per trip) (Marriott Edgar, Wolseley Charles) [4:42]
Rec.20th July 1933
8. The Parson of Puddle (Greatrex Newman) [3:27]
Rec. November 1938
9. Gunner Joe (Marriott Edgar) [4:16]
Rec. 20th July 1933
10. Old Sam (No.2) – Part 1: Beat the retreat on thy drum (R. Harris Weston, Robert P. Weston, Bert Lee; 1932) [3:29]
Rec. May 1940
11. Old Sam (No.2) – Part 2: One each apiece all round (Stanley Holloway) [2:34]
Rec. May 1940
12. The ‘ole in the ark (Marriott Edgar) [3:39]
1st December 1937
13. The recumbent posture (Marriott Edgar) [4:01]
Rec.16th May 1939
14. Marksman Sam (Marriott Edgar, Stanley Holloway) [4:11]
Rec. circa March 1935
15. Sam drummed out (Robert P. Weston, Bert Lee) [4:22]
Rec. circa August 1935
16. My missus (Stanley Holloway, Leo Conriche) [2:44]
Rec. March 1940
17. Brahn boots (R. Harris Weston, Robert P. Weston, Bert Lee) [3:32]
Rec. 29th October 1940
18. Yorkshire Pudden (Robert P. Weston, Bert Lee) [3:34]
Rec. 29th October 1940
19. The Return of Albert (Albert comes back) (Marriott Edgar) [4:26]
Rec. September 1940
20. Keep smiling (Jerome Kern, Oscar Hammerstein II: from Three Sisters, 1934 show) [3:08]
Rec. April 1934
Accompanied on piano by Leo Conriche and Wolseley Charles, and Charles Prentice and the Drury Lane Theatre Orchestra



Today, Stanley Holloway is probably best remembered for creating the role of the redoubtable Alfred P. Doolittle in My Fair Lady. But that came quite late in a long career, which began with, of all things, the aspiration to be an opera singer. In 1913, aged 23, this took him briefly to Milan for lessons; but the Great War put an end to these ambitions, and he became established as a star of the London West End, and, later, of numerous films.

The rise of the gramophone brought him huge success with his famous monologues and humorous songs, most of which appear in this entertaining collection. Many of these routines first saw the light of day in a series of revues in which Holloway starred in the 1920s called The Co-optimists.

Admirers of this repertoire might possibly be surprised to know that Stan was a Londoner by birth, because many of the numbers are delivered in broad North Country accents. The most famous is of course the ‘title track’, The Lion and Albert. Albert Ramsbottom’s parents, angling for a settlement after their son is eaten by Wallace the lion, would be comfortable in today’s ‘compensation culture’. Track 19 contains a splendid sequel, The Return of Albert, which concerns the Ramsbottoms’ efforts to claim life insurance, thwarted when the lad reappears, having been regurgitated by Wallace.

Then of course, there’s soldier Sam, he of the fallen musket, who spawned a whole series of entertaining stories, involving the proudly proletarian Sam and his brushes with various royals. Holloway’s excellent range of voices is well show-cased here, as it is in the enjoyable Parson of Puddle.

There’s a nice smattering of dewy-eyed sentiment, too, notably in My missus and Keep smiling. But I have to say that my favourite (and one I would thoroughly recommend to all lovers of England’s greatest county) is Yorkshire Pudden, the fascinating story of how the recipe for that delicious comestible was brought to earth one day by a passing angel.

A totally delightful CD, this, and a fine tribute to a great British entertainer.

Gwyn Parry-Jones

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