Monday, September 04, 2006
A couple of posts ago I tried to reactivate the comments section by asking my millions of readers who they thought would win in a fight between the Mike Sammes Singers and The Cliff Adams Singers (or, as Richard would point out, The Cliff Adams Singers featuring Cliff Adams and His Cliff Adams Singers). I knew I was on a hiding to nothing, but thanks to Kek-W who suggested that the Mike Sammes Singers would easily win, unless the Black And White Minstrels turned up. Everyone in the East End of London knows about the Minstrels and their rep: that fat bloke with the lovely baritone used to be known as Grievous Bodily Harm. Enough said.
However, I know that, despite their easy goin', easy listenin' reputation, The Cliff Adams Singers were a right lot.
After recording Sing Something Simple, the honey voiced vocalists would retire to a local pub, the Old Bull And Bush, which was a hostelry favoured by many a showbusiness type in the 1950's through to the 1970's. It was demolished in 1982.
The Adamsiz would descend on the pub and the drink would flow way into the night. They would always insist on a lock-in. Anyone of a more sensible disposition would make their exit as quickly as possible. There would be scenes of debauchery not seen since the days of the Roman Empire. All sorts of sexually transmitted diseases ran rife through the world of showbusiness at one point, and most of the problems led back to the doors of the Cliff Adams Singers.
Put it this way, there were several incidents in which members of the high kicking Tiller Girls dance troupe had to retire because they were "in the family way". There would be so much gossip from those in the know that the expression "she's been down the Old Bull And Bush" became a part of the parlance of the day.
The person to ask about these days of debauchery is variety and light entertainment expert Roy Hudd. However, it is best to "soften him up" first by plying him with a few shots of single malt, and asking him some slightly less seedy stories, preferably ones about how the Glasgow Empire was the graveyard of many a variety act. When he is completely plastered, just whisper the words "Cliff Adams" in his ear and you'll find out more than you ever wanted to.
Just don't say I didn't warn you.
I'm sure she won't mind me saying this..but my Nan was one of those high-kickers. But she didn't do it when she was 'up the bull and bush'. What a star!
Glad to see you back and on top form! Yipppppeeeeeee!xxxx
Roy Hudd health scare.
"...favoured by many a showbusiness type in the 1950's through to the 1970's. It was demolished in 1982." And the B& W Minstrels are still there. Buried under the rubble.
MJ - get well soon then, Roy. Mind you, he could probably do with losing some weight for his own good, and playing the part of a funeral director is tempting fate, isn't it?
Arabella - I can't imagine that the kind of stick thin birds who populate television nowadays would be up to all that high kicking. All that energy used wouldn't square with a diet of a couple of glasses of water and a stick of celery a day.
I saw it and ran, and I ain't going to look back now. You have reminded me why I took drugs in the 60s and don't regret it.
I think there should be a limit on the number of singing groups taking part. I mean, you could get the Johnny Mann Singers or James Last's Orchestra involved, but it would be a big free for all and there would be so many casualties it would end up looking like that scene in Gone With The Wind where all the Civil War dead and dying are laid out.
Tom - the Mike Sammes Singers did backing vocals on I am The Walrus, so I imagine some of them turned on, tuned in and dropped off, as they used to say in those days. Mind you, I spent a large part of the '60's on drugs - strawberry flavoured junior aspirin, Cherry Victoria cough linctus, heroin (it was the only thing to shut me up so my parents could get a decent night's sleep) ...
Billski - I'm sure you're too young to remember The Good Old Days. If so, you have had a lucky escape. "This time ... chiefly ... YOUR-SELVES!!"
Geoffski - I would be scared of Hansi. He looks like a real bruiser. Anyone unfamiliar with him can have a look here - http://www.shb-denmark.dk/Files/Billeder/James_Last242.jpg
They'd all run a mile if The Ladybirds walked in. That one with the glasses had a wicked bolo punch after a couple of Jacks.
Richard - ah, it's back to the old certainties - Desmond Carrington and the Ladybirds.
I've heard of it being improper to hit a woman in glasses, but don't know what the etiquette is if you're thumped by a woman in glasses.
I haven't heard Desmond's show since it was moved to Tuesday evenings. I kept forgetting and it WAS SUPPOSED TO BE ON A SUNDAY AFTERNOON. That was the way it was. They reduced it to an hour as well!
Tiller girls - isn't that what Speaker of the House Betty Boothroyd used to be which was a bit scandalous? Or something?
Oh - it's another Betty!
except for the Ladybirds, of course. the Ladybirds kick ass.
Richard - Desmond rocks, actually. I can remember him saying "not only did the Beatles define time, they were time itself". You wouldn't get that from Chris Moyles.
First Nations - brilliant use of imagery. Beating people up through the power of positivity.
I don't know if you genuinely know the Ladybirds, or if it's done in a jokey way. I can't believe the Ladybirds were big in America, but, if they were, the world seems a nicer place.
Ooh. Your options have disappeared. What's going on?
As for the commenting options, normal service will return ASAP ;-)
*bangs head repeatedly on desk*
How do I know this?
Well, I used to own a copy of The Mike Sammes Singers Sing Baccarach & David (yes, Trains & Boats & Trains will *never* be the same again....) and on the sleeve notes, it says that the Mike Sammes Singers are, "quite simply, tops in their bag..."
I think that settles it, don't you?
They also do the "got one got one, everybody's got one ...etc." b.v.s on I am the Walrus. Top that.
btw - who's Spisnterella?
Spisnterella is the aplpe of your eye.
Again, I say - "easy"
You forgot the Magazine. I play Magazine too....
qgumvudf - you *really* don't like pissed posts, do you Bettseter?