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Various Artists - Beyond Our Ken 1964 (UK)

On: Friday, March 1, 2013

Hugh Paddick
Hugh William Paddick
Aug 22 1915 - Nov 09 2000 age 85
Official Site

Kenneth Williams
Kenneth Charles Williams
Feb 22 1926 – Apr 15 1988 age 62

Kenneth Horne
Charles Kenneth Horne
Feb 27 1907 – Feb 14 1969 age 61
Official Site

Betty Marsden
Birth name
Feb 24 1919 – Jul 18 1998 age 79
Official Site

Bill Pertwee
William Desmond Anthony Pertwee
Amersham, Buckinghamshire
Jul 21 1926 -
Official Site

It was in 1958 that ‘Beyond Our Ken' first burst upon an unsuspecting public. 'Brilliant'... 'witty'... 'devastatingly funny'... these were just a few of the comments that were never made. However, the show was the subject of a survey carried out among a cross section of listeners and although many of them were too cross to answer, the survey did produce some interesting facts. Thirty-four percent thought that it should be kept as a deterrent; twenty percent of the 'don't knows' didn't know; and forty-six percent emigrated. Nevertheless, the BBC persevered and it wasn't long before 'Beyond Our Ken' became a household word, though we won't venture an opinion as to which part of the house. The original producer of the show was Jacques Brown, who has now retired from the BBC, but of those early formative years I think all of us who worked with him would agree that without his help, advice and direction, the whole thing would have been so much easier. In more recent times the show was taken over by John Simmonds, a young man who started his career with the BBC right at the bottom... as a producer. A word also about Edwin Braden, who has been our musical adviser throughout. A person of cultured musical taste, the sort of man who can listen to ‘The William Tell Overture' without once thinking of 'The Lone Ranger'. Now we come to the cast, and first, of course, the 'polished head' of the show, Kenneth Horne. Educated Cambridge and various revue bars, he is the suave, carnation-wearing epitome of an Englishman. Wears immaculate suits with a conservative cut, although getting a bit liberal round the back bench. His rich, vintage-port voice lends an air of refinement to the show and even the more bawdy lines at least sound as if they're well bred. Then there is Kenneth Williams. What can I possibly say of him--on the cover of this record that is--that hasn't already been said? An actor of high calibre, of course, his vocal mimicry and the uncanny power of observation which he brings to a character are unparalleled, and as for those gorgeous rehearsal antics which the public doesn't see or hear, well, they can only be described as--oh what's the word? It's no good, I can't use it anyway. Hugh Paddick, also an actor and revue performer, has a masterly sense of comedy timing and together with Williams forms an incomparable twosome in 'Charles and Rodney'. Betty Marsden, our rose among the thorns, is equally at home in the fields of drama and revue and in her gentle yet unmistakable guying of a certain cookery expert she has amongst her many admirers, I know, the celebrated Miss Fanny Craddock. Completing the team is Bill Pertwee, a variety comedian who has himself often said 'Variety has been very good to me--especially when you consider what I have done to variety'. A very useful cricketer as well, and I have personally witnessed an innings of ninety-eight against a strong team; and, believe me, those girls played marvellously. Well, there you have the scintillating company of performers who have in their time picked up over a hundred of my scripts and, in the immortal words of Jacques Brown, 'lifted it off the paper'. On this our first L.P. we all hope you will enjoy the particular excerpts selected from 'Beyond Our Ken'. In closing, may I, in the best traditions of the show, leave you with this thought: John, Paul, George and Ringo record for the same Company that issues this LP. So remember, for every one of ours you buy you help to support The Beatles! ERIC MERRIMAN 

01 Introduction And Twinkle Doll's Concert Party, I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside (Glover-Kind)
02 Hornerama
03 Tunbridge Wells Fargo
04 Picture-Go-Round
05 Dr. Yes, James Bond Theme (Norman)

Skit Comedy
Parlophone/EMI PMC 1238
His other material on this blog is HERE

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