He used to say “Hello playmates, how do you do”. His
signature tune was “Big hearted Arthur they call me” He also
used to sing the “busy bee” song. He started in 38 with “Stinker
Murdoc” on the radio in “Bandwagon” in an imaginary flat at the
top of the BBC. He was born in Liverpool.
He was 18 stone plus, huge guy and he had a
xylophone. He had black hair parted in the middle, huge face but
he was brilliant on the xylophone. I saw him three or four
Bygraves - singer
I saw him, he was very good in his younger days. I
saw him at Brighton when he was up and coming.
Calvert - trumpet player
I remember him, he played the trumpet, “Oh My Papa”
and things like that.
Campbell - singer
He was a singer. On the stage would be
a campfire and around it would be several cowboys. His catch
phrase was “Mighty fine, mighty fine” and his act was called
“The singing cowboys”.
Billy Carlyle and
Hilda Mundy - comedy act
They were a husband and wife act, domestic on the stage,
they were very funny. They would be having a cup of tea and
would have arguments. He was a thin guy and small, they always
had arguments, a proper man and wife comedy act, very, very
Charlie Chaplin -
He appeared at Wolverhampton in 1903 before
he went to America. He was in Fred Carno’s Circus, they were all
youngsters. He came from a very poor part of London.
I saw him in Dudley when I was 14, but he did go to
Wolverhampton. I saw him at Dudley Hippodrome because we had a
free pass because we had two grocer’s shops and we had a bill
poster for the Hippodrome every week. For putting it on display
we had one free pass. It was like a book and you had to go at
quarter past five during the war, so we could all be home by
nine o’clock. Chris Charlton was a magician. I went on with him
the first time, he would always pick a young lad from the
audience to come up onto the stage. I did it a second time and
he would stop you one step before the last as you went up onto
the stage and say “Have you ever been on the stage before my
son?” I said “yes I have” and his face lit up. He said “Who was
that with?”, I said “with you last year” He said “Oh”. He didn’t
like that, they thought that I was a plant. It was an
embarrassing moment. It embarrassed him anyway.
Cotton - band leader
Billy Cotton and his band came quite a few times
doing the Billy Cotton Band show, like they did on the radio.
Different members did their own acts and bits of comedy and they
all finished on the edge of the stage throwing cotton wool
snowballs at the audience who would throw them back. It always
started with his catchphrase “Wakey Wakey” and then you would
hear the familiar theme tune that he used on the radio.
list of stars