George Formby, Jr. and His Banjolele

George Formby, Jr (born today in 1904) was a star of the English Music Hall who specialized in comic songs to his own banjolele (ukulele-banjo) accompaniment. He was the son of popular music hall star George Formby, a favorite of Charlie Chaplin’s. When his father passed away in 1921, the younger Formby started performing his material and became an even greater star, aided by the popularity of his Gramophone records and appearances in motion pictures. Look! Here’s one now:

The highly inflential musician and comedian died of a heart attack in 1961 — and from the speed of his playing it’s not hard to see why.

To learn more about vaudevilleconsult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.

 

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