Posts Tagged ‘Francis Day & Hunter (publishers)’

h1

Nellie Stratton as she sang ‘Give Us a Bit of Your Kilt,’ 1898/99

November 6, 2014

Nellie Stratton (1875-1947), English music hall comedienne, featured on the cover of the song for ‘Give Us A Bit Of Your Kilt,’ written and composed by A.J. Mills and Albert Perry.
(published by Francis, Day & Hunter, London, 1898; lithographic printing by H.G. Banks, London)

Chorus
‘Oh! Sandy, you’ve taken our hearts by storm,
There’s no mistake about it, we are mash’d up on your form:
Oh! McGregor, you look so finely built,
If you can’t give us a bit of your love,
Give us a bit of your kilt!’

The Granville Theatre of Varieties, Waltham Green, London, week beginning Monday, 13 March 1899
‘Miss Nellie Stratton is a neat little serio, her seaside story of ”The cosy little corner,” and her description of Sandy M’Gregor’s kilt and the havoc it wrought in the hearts of the fair sex, is highly popular and instructive.’
(The Era, London, Saturday, 18 March 1899, p. 18d)

The Bedford music hall, Camden, London, week beginning Monday, 10 April 1899
‘Miss Nellie Stratton, a pretty brunette, sings of ”Alice in Wonderland” – not Lewis Carroll’s little heroine, but a lass from the country, who visits Barnum and Bailey’s. In her song concerning a Highlander Miss Stratton puts Sandy in a quandary by asking ”If you can’t give me a bit of your love give us a bit of your kilt.” The hardy Scot, anxious to save that indispensable article of his wardrobe, buys a suit, hands it to his lady admirers in a parcel as a kilt, and then beats a judicious retreat.’
(The Era, London, Saturday, 15 April 1899, p. 18d)

* * * * *

Nellie Stratton, one of the daughters of John William Stratton (1841-1889) and his wife Esther (née Solomon, 1839-1911), was married to the comedian Wilkie Bard (William August Smith, 1874-1944) at St. George’s, Bloomsbury, London, on 29 July 1895. The witnesses at their wedding were Francis James Peers (1867-), a musician and one of the bride’s brothers-in-law, and the actor Herbert Arrowsmith (Bert) Monks (1872-1952).

h1

song sheet featuring Eugene Stratton singing Leslie Stuart’s ‘My Little Octoroon,’ 1899

November 16, 2013

colour lithograph song sheet cover for Leslie Stuart’s popular song, ‘My Little Octoroon, with a portrait of its original singer, Eugene Stratton (1861-1918), American-born British music hall star, minstrel and negro delineator
(original artwork by W. George, published by Francis, Day & Hunter, London, 1899)
Eugene Stratton recorded ‘My Little Octoroon’ for the Gramophone & Typewriter Co Ltd in London on 7 December 1903. It was issued as a 10” black label G&T (catalogue number 3-2013) in March 1904. Rather more accessible among his relatively few recordings is his 1911 version of Leslie Stuart’s ‘Lily of Laguna,’ a song which he first recorded in 1903.
Leslie Stuart wrote a string of hit songs, a few of which are featured on a medley recorded in London in 1930.

h1

Marie Lloyd sings ‘The Geisha’

April 21, 2013

Marie Lloyd (1870-1922), English music hall star, sometimes billed as ‘The Queen of Comedy,’ sings The Geisha, written by Charles Wilmott, with music by George Le Brunn, at the London Pavilion, Piccadilly Circus, London, September/October 1896
(colour lithograph song sheet cover published by Francis, Day & Hunter, London, 1896)

London Pavilion, Piccadilly Circus, London, September/October, 1896
‘There is that immensely popular comedienne Miss Marie Lloyd, who had just returned from a long and successful tour refreshed and invigorated. ”I don’t beat about the bush,” her latest song, is quite in her most humorous vein. Marie evidently has no patience with hesitation and want of frankness. She does not admire the girl who is ”gasping for a gargle,” and is afraid to mention the fact to her swain. Her remarks are, as she says, few and free, but they are very much to the point. To the diffident suitor dying to propose she would say, ”If you want to marry me say so.” The meaning of the song is much accentuated by many a sly wink, and its pith and point are admirably brought out. An excellent character song is here ”Geisha Girl,” a Japanesy impersonation, which give considerable scope to her powers as an actress. One of the most attractive features of her assumption of the costume and customs of a tea house attendant in the land of the chrysanthemum is the concluding dance, which is a delightful revelation of quaintness and grace. It is so rarely that Miss Lloyd dances now that audiences are scarcely acquainted with her Terpsichorean powers, and when she elects to give a taste of them, her gyrations are a novelty, and are appreciated as such.’
(The Era, London, Saturday, 3 October 1896, p. 18a)

h1

Elsie Janis and Basil Hallam in The Passing Show, Palace Theatre, London, 1914

January 13, 2013

song sheet cover for ‘You’re Here and I’m Here’
words by Harry B. Smith, music by Jerome D. Kern
sung by Elsie Janis and Basil Hallam
in Alfred Butt’s production of the revue
The Passing Show, Palace Theatre, London, 20 April 1914
(photo: Foulsham & Banfield, London, 1914;
published by Francis, Day & Hunter, London, and
T.B. Harms & Francis, Day & Hunter, New York, 1914)

The first revue entitled The Passing Show was staged at the Casino Theatre, New York, in May 1894. The name was revived on Broadway for a similar production, The Passing Show of 1912 (Winter Garden, 22 July 1912). Thereafter there was a Passing Show every year until 1919, and the last of the series was The Passing Show of 1921 (Winter Garden, 29 December 1920). Meanwhile in London the format was reproduced by Alfred Butt at the Palace Theatre, Cambridge Circus, where The Passing Show was produced on 20 April 1914 with Elsie Janis, a young Broadway star making her first appearance in London, Basil Hallam, Clara Beck, Gwendoline Brogden, Winifred Delavanti, Marjorie Cassidy, Jack Christy, Mildred Stokes, Florence Sweetman, Nelson Keys and Arthur Playfair.

Elsie Janis and her partner Basil Hallam were an immediate hit. They recorded their two duets from the show, ‘You’re Here and I’m Here’ (HMV 4-2401; 1.20mb Mp3 file) and ‘I’ve Got Everything I Want But You’ (HMV 04116) in London on 4 June 1914.

The Passing Show proved so popular that Butt repeated his success the following year with The Passing Show of 1915 (Palace, 9 March 1915, with a second edition on 12 July), again starring Elsie Janis and Basil Hallam.

‘Elsie Janis Manager
‘Makes Alfred Butt of the Palace Talk Terms for New Act.
‘London, April 4 [1914]. – Elsie Janis has become a “manager,” according to Alfred Butt, proprietor of the Palace theater, where Miss Janis is to open in the new Revue in a fortnight.
‘“When Miss Janis was in London last summer,” Mr. Butt explained today, “I signed her to appear at the Palace. When she arrived back here a few weeks ago she informed me she had brought two other artists and I must find places for them on the bill.
‘“I saw them to-day for the first time and asked them both to sign contracts. To my amazement they said they couldn’t sign, that they already were under contract to Miss Janis. I asked her what it all meant and she told me she had both these music hall artists tied up tight for twelve months. If I wanted their services I must negotiate with their manager – and I did.”’
(The Syracuse Herald, Syracuse, New York, Sunday, 5 April 1914, Section 1, p.1b)<br><br>

Listen to a cover version of ‘You’re Here and I’m Here’ sung by Olive Kline and Harry Macdonough, recorded for Victor, Camden, NJ, 17 February 1914.

h1

Harriett Vernon’s ‘Young King Neptune,’ 1894

January 11, 2013

a portrait of Harriett Vernon (1852-1923),
English music hall singer, pantomime principal boy and actress,
featured on the lithograph song sheet cover of Arthur Seldon’s patriotic song,
‘Young King Neptune’
(published by Francis, Day & Hunter, London, and T.B. Harms & Co, New York, 1894; printed by H.G. Banks, London, 1894)

London Pavilion, Bank Holiday Monday, 7 May 1894
‘… The serio-comic business found excellent exponents in Miss Marie Le Blanc, Miss Florrie Robina, and Miss Maggie Duggan. Miss Harriett Vernon was vociferously applauded in the character of Neptune, her costume being simply superb… .’
(The Standard, London, Tuesday, 15 May 1894, p. 2d)

Harriett Vernon

Harriett Vernon in the character of ‘Young King Neptune’
(photo: unknown, probably London, 1894)

This real photograph cigarette card was issued in the United States of America during 1894 or shortly thereafter.