Thursday, 12 February 2009

Layton and Johnstone

Behold (or behear) 'staid and solid' Layton and Johnstone in a medley.

Encore? Why not, gentlemen.?

As someone says on a comment, one would expect them to be a couple of white folks in tuxedos, a pair of Mr Cholmondely-Warners. But then the Mills Brothers also did elocution. Not so wrong on the tuxedo though.

From the link, above:

Layton and Johnstone invariably appeared on stage in superbly tailored evening clothes. They had always very enthusiastic audiences. As the curtain opened, Turner would be playing an introduction. Then the applause died down, and they went into their act, which was simplicity itself. They were seen in front of plain black curtains and performed with a minimum of movement, Layton seated at the keyboard and Johnstone standing erect in the crook of the grand piano. The only hint of flamboyance came from a silk handkerchief which Johnstone always clutched in one hand. But what the audience regarded indulgently as a mild affectation was, in reality, a device to disguise a hand crushed in a boyhood accident.

As a student, I used to love junk shops, which is where I bought two Layton and Johnstone 78s. One had When the Red Red Robin and the other had Ro Ro Rolling Along. In the days when I used regularly to hitch from Leeds to Norwich to see C, we would sometimes put these on on a Sunday morning. They were in their way a kind of soundtrack along with Traffic, The Incredible String Band, The Stones, Mozart and Chopin.

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