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Tommy Steele, a great all-rounder, still going strong

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stuart.uk
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Tommy Steele, a great all-rounder, still going strong

Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 12:53 pm

Tommy for me is one of the worlds great all-round entertainers, as a young man just out of the merchant navy he became a rock an roll singer with songs like A Handful Of Songs, Singing The Blues and a favourite of mine Butterfingers. Some of those songs he sang in The Tommy Steele Story, playing himself in an account of his 1st yr in show-business.

In the 50s he also made Tommy The Toreador, playing a merchant sailor mistaken for a bull-fighter with Janet Munroe. In this he sang his big hit Little White Bull. In The Duke Wore Jeans, he played a dual role of a rich and working class young man. He also sang It’s All Been Happening in the film

In the serious Light Up The Lights he and Benny Hill play ex-music hall brothers during WW2 operating a search light. He did the musical It’s All Been Happening with cameos from the likes od Russ Conway.

It was about now he became internationally known with his West-End and Broadway Show Half A Sixpence. This was made into a film with Julia Foster. I get the impression of some in the U.S this wasn’t a hit stateside, but without question it was a hit in the UK. HAS is still shown regulary on UK Tv.

Tommy played a swashbuckler Where’s Jack, playing a loveable highwayman being pursued by lawman Stanley Baker.

In the latter part of his career Tommy’s preferred to work almost exclusively on the stage with West-End hits Hans Christian Anderson, his biggest stage hit Singing In The Rain, Some Like It Hot and recently Scrooge.

the theatre maybe his great love, but it's hurt his career too, because he's performing to a small audience. however, he's still in demand over 50 yrs after he recorded his first hits

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Postby knitwit45 » January 22nd, 2008, 1:19 pm

Hi Stuart, and welcome!!

I got to see Tommy Steele in "Half a Sixpence" when it was playing on Broadway, during the New York World's Fair of 1963-64. He was so much fun, and he made sure everyone in the audience was having fun, too. I remember some of the jokes/lines were pretty silly, and he'd look at the audience and grin and shrug.

His part as the leprechaun who falls in love with Susan in "Finian's Rainbow" was another treat for me. Not only was it Fred Astaire's last movie, it had the most erotic version of "Old Devil Moon" I have ever seen :oops: :oops: :oops:

Thanks for reminding me of 2 great experiences with Mr. Steele, and again, welcome.

Nancy

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Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 1:31 pm

thanks Nancy.

you also reminded me of two Tommy films which i forgot The Worlds Happiest Millionaire and Finians Rainbow.

i don't know yet if you can put links on to these posts, but if you try to get Tommy on you Tube you'll find clips form his 1957 rock an roll film The Tommy Steele Story where he sings A Handful Of Songs and Butterfingers. there is also a clip from his big stage hit of the 80s Singing In The Rain. albeit with a child on The Jim'll Fix It Show

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Postby knitwit45 » January 22nd, 2008, 1:38 pm

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzneKaAR7rM[/youtube]

here you are, Stuart.

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Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 1:48 pm

Thanks Nancy. i tried to get him singing Butterfingers as a reply, but without success. was the singing in the rain clip a surprise for you, or did you know about it all ready

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Postby knitwit45 » January 22nd, 2008, 1:51 pm

No, I wasn't aware of his turn in "SITR"..it's funny, I was just thinking of him the other day, wondered what he was doing now. He was kind of a one hit wonder here, and faded out of sight after "The Happiest Millionaire".

Do you know if any of his movies are shown on BBC America? I would love to catch up with him.

Nancy

stuart.uk
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Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 2:02 pm

no i wouldn't know Nancy. though i imagine the same as me after seeing his SITR clip that you thought him better than his days in Hollywood. i can think of quite a few Brit performers, who wern't at their pk when in America.

sorry to bore you with folk you won't have heard of, but double act Morcambe And Wise appeared something like 17 times on the Ed Sullivan show, but long after the U.S forgot about them they hit their pk in the early 70s with their tv show, particulary the annual Christmas ones became a National institution

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knitwit45
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Postby knitwit45 » January 22nd, 2008, 2:06 pm

Stuart, it isn't a bore to learn about new things and new people, and you will find the folks here are a friendly lot. We sometimes agree to disagree, but it never gets rancorous or ugly. Just lively.

Please keep telling us about some of your favorites, it's very interesting.

Nancy

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Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 2:14 pm

Scrooge - West End Show - Chrismtmas 2005
Tommy Steele was born Thomas Hicks in Mason Street, Bermondsey and for close on 50 years Tommy has been one of Britain's top entertainers. Transformed from Merchant Seaman to the ...

www.scroogethemusical.co.uk/show/who-tommysteele.html · Cached page

stuart.uk
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Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 2:42 pm

thanks for the Tommy film clips

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knitwit45
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Postby knitwit45 » January 22nd, 2008, 3:39 pm

Stuart, see what I mean? I am one of the few uninformed, who usually write about how I reacted to something or someone. Most of the folks here are very knowledgeable, and very generous in sharing that knowledge with us. I didn't have a clue about Onna White, but count on someone like our Johnm to point it out, and add some great info besides.

I think you will be quite happy here!!!!

Nancy

stuart.uk
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Postby stuart.uk » January 22nd, 2008, 3:46 pm

Nancy

i couldn't find a way of sending it for you, but in a previous post i did send a link about Tommy's Scrooge

i thought i'd send you this link. i hope others don't mind, but it's my fav double act Morcambe And Wise with Diana Rigg. i think it's one of the best comedy musical numbers ever made

Diana Rigg - Morecambe & Wise
02:21 From: dianarigg

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knitwit45
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Postby knitwit45 » January 22nd, 2008, 3:53 pm

Stuart, copy the link, then when you are composing your message, hit the URL button, paste the link, and hit the URL button again. Same thing for a You tube link. (I just discovered this, have been going silly with it, thanks to my friend Chris, AKA movieman1957)


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