Monday, September 16, 2013

George Melly

A recent charity shop find for a mere pound.  I have several George Melly records but I have never seen this one before so grabbed it knowing I was in for a treat.

His Guardian obituary says  -  "....Alan George Heywood Melly was born in Liverpool. His father, an easy-going man, came from a large and well-known Liverpool business family, and made a comfortable living in the wool trade, which he hated. Tom didn't mind what anyone did, so long as it made them happy. Maud, George's Jewish mother, had once dreamed of a career on the stage, and remained a leading figure in Liverpool's amateur dramatics. (George's sister Andree was to become a well-known actress.) Maud was the friend of many theatrical queens, and visiting stars such as Robert Helpman, Frederick Ashton and Douglas Byng were often at the house near Aigburth Road, as was David Webster, then running a department store in Liverpool before taking over the Royal Opera House.
George wrote his autobiography backwards, starting with his early years in the jazz world, and working back to his childhood. Scouse Mouse (1984) is an affectionate account of 1930s middle-class Liverpool and its numerous Melly eccentrics. The snake in the Eden of Sefton Park was George's headmaster at Parkfield prep school, the alcoholic WW Twyne. A manic wielder of the house slipper, given to purple rages, Twyne deplored almost everything about the modern world except games. His denunciations of ballet and leftwing politics were so extreme that George knew at once that he would like both. Thus his interest in both anarchism and surrealism, developed at Stowe, can be traced to his comfortable Liverpudlian beginnings, just as his passion for fishing went back to family holidays in North Wales.
George clearly lacked officer-like qualities and was unable to qualify even as a naval clerk when he was called up in 1944. He remained a skiving Ordinary Seaman for most of his three and a half years service, leaving anarchist tracts on the messdeck to annoy his superior officers. He spent most of his leaves in London getting to know the Surrealist circle that gathered round the Belgian poet and gallery-owner ELT Mesens, and relishing an exuberant homosexual life made much easier by his uniform. Rum, Bum and Concertina (1977), his account of this period, is extremely funny. As a convinced surrealist George felt an obligation to be shocking and subversive, but his sense of reality and his sense of humour kept him out of serious trouble....."

Tracks are as follows -   1. Aint Misbehavin'  2. Squeeze me  3. I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter  4. An Awful Lot My Gal Ain't Got  5. Your Feets Too Big  6. My Very Good Friend The Milkman  7. The Joint Is Jumpin'

George Melly  -   Sings Fats Waller  - Side One

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