Sent: Thursday 05July07@1734hrs Sender: Roland
Goodbye and good luck to a great character, musician and champion of Surrealism!
I loved GM's autobiographical writings too and I learnt quite a lot from them as a teenager! He is a great loss, alas.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1718hrs Sender: Mike Gilroy
Dear Dear George~ well it comes to us all, I always remember you rocking many many times with the Feetwarmers In Dublin in the mid and late 80s, you were the most wonderful humane kind and unique performer, such fun and great times. Bless you and keep you I send you my best~~~~
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1714hrs Sender: Drew Wallbank
Met George very briefly a couple of times 20 odd years ago whilst riotously dancing to the band. His warmth, charm, humour and mischief have remained a lovely memory. I'd always hoped to thank him for that. My condolences to his family.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1709hrs Sender: Glen Spence
Just heard.....always loved and we will never forget the Education........God be with you on your heavenly travels
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1701hrs Sender: Anny Hare
End of an Era! My sympathies to the family and all his other fans. George was one of the great characters! He came to my aid many years ago at a gig at the Tardebigge pub in Bromsgrove - a friend and I were being hassled by some overenthusiastic and over-imbibed reps - it was getting less and less friendly. George finished his set, saw we were in trouble, sauntered over, said "hey guys - these ladies are with me" they melted away, he bought champagne and we had a fantastic half hour whilst he told wicked stories and jokes to entertain us! He will be missed.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1646hrs Sender: Dorothy and Ken Murray
sincere condolences to all family and friend will be missed greatly RIP
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1627hrs Sender: Gilly
god bless you George-you were one in a million. my thoughts are with his family xxx
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1622hrs Sender: Anthony Donaldson (Via Digby Fairweather's Website)
I was a big George Melly fan and heard you both play together at the Cinnamon club, Bowdon, Cheshire about 5 years ago - it was fabulous I was disappointed to hear about the death of George in the papers today and would like to send a letter of sympathy to his wife where could I send this?
I know he was a good friend of your and you have my sympathy thank you and best regards, Anthony
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1619hrs Sender: Toby Hughes
It was with such a heavy heart that I read the news today of George Melly's passing. As I have written to you before, he was (and to be sure still is) such a great influence on myself and my brother in picking up musical instruments as children and carrying on with them to this day.
George will be sorely missed. Please pass along love and deepest sympathy from the entire Hughes family here in Canada.
Sincerely, Toby Hughes
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1614hrs Sender: Michael Nicholas
Deepest sympathy to George's family. A great man with a wonderful spirit . Thanks for the music, the wit and the insights.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1604hrs Sender: Arlene Sutton
Thank you for introducing me to Jazz sooo many years ago. From sailing on "The Daffodil" from Tower Bridge to Margate, to Jazz Clubs, BBC Jazz club tickets in the '50's when George only dressed in black and so many other assignments. Whether with Mick Mulligan, Alex Welsh, John or Digby he was a STAR and will be sorely missed. My condolences to his family.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1547hrs Sender: Keith Greenfield
This is a sad day. GM was a unique entertainer and fountain of musical wisdom and one-liners. when some fool on Radio 3 asked him if Frank Sinatra should be classed as a jazz singer or crooner he cut the chap off at the knees with "Sinatra did not sing a note that was not Jazz"
I sang a lusty "Fanny Brown" with George Melly at a gig in Worcester in 1991. Well, actually I stood up in the audience, who were a frosty middle class lot and did not like his material at all. He joined us for a couple of drinks later on, zoot-suited and with perfectly angled fedora. On leaving with all eyes on him he turned back from the door and bellowed "Don't forget lads, "Fanny Brown". The frosties remained unamused. Fifteen years later I am still in stitches and can hear the refrain.
I would heartily advise all browsing this column to read the three volumes of his autobiography (in any order!). The story swings from (his words) "Wine, women and song" to "Rum, bum and concertina".
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1518hrs Sender: Jim
I followed him to gigs for years when I lived in London. Wonderful memories of an incredible man. Goodbye George and thank you.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1442hrs Sender: Simon Fanshawe
I first met GEORGE at the Edinburgh Festival years ago at a lunch party.
That rubenesque voice enveloped me. He always had a witty eye for the young poof. He was sweet to me. To be in the embrace of his charm was the doublest cream of fun. Talking with George was like rolling around in pleasure, flirting, laughing and with the good things in life dropping into ones lap from George's life, brain, laughter and joie de vivre. He always had a wonderful eye for life. I loved the times I ever spent in his company.
He gave the world much joy.. and with a wonderful wink that suggested we were all involved in a conspiracy of pleasure, to defeat those who were not prepared to live to the full. He was just a lovely man.
How great to remember him. I am glowing as I write. Thanks, George
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1344hrs Sender: David
The most amazing man who got me into jazz and surrealism through his records and TV series. George will live on in his music and the lives he touched.
The world has lost a bright force, and I'm very sad today. Love to George's family and friends x
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1338hrs Sender: Darren Mullan
I heard the news this morning and was devastated. I wish George the best in heaven
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1315hrs Sender: Mike Bowe
my thoughts and prayers are with you - the family of the great man who wrote the magnificent series of books which I read and re-read on a regular basis - who can forget "the spade bongo player"?. A huge loss to me (another scouser) and the legions of George fans. He will be greatly missed. Mike x
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1249hrs Sender: Mike and Helen Holden
thanks for all the pleasure of listening to the music and attending the occasional concert the last one at the new vic in Newcastle staffs.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1247hrs Sender: Paul Smith
So sorry to hear the news. Deepest sympathy. We miss you already. Can't believe we shall never witness live again the glorious dramatic 'Frankie & Johnnie'. Thanks George for so many good times.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1150hrs Sender: Gary Clarke
Have just heard the news. My deepest sympathy goes out to all concerned. Love Gary X
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1120hrs Sender: Jenny Kendall-Tobias
Please send our best from the Channel Islands to all concerned.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1057hrs Sender: Steven Mclean
My condolences go to George's family and friends at this sad time.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1044hrs Sender: James Whalley
I'm very sad to hear of George's death. My family and I used to see him every run up to Christmas at Ronnie Scott's , and have been captivated by his inimitable performances on many other occasions. The Jazz world is a poorer place this morning.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1023hrs Sender: Val Kirkham
Just heard on radio 4 George's spirit has moved on. Sitting here with my memories of him. Loved your book Diana. This is a sad time for you, you have my thoughts and sympathy.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1022hrs Sender: Peter Dickinson
What a great, enthusiastic and intelligent man. A real advocate for a creative and expressive life. His speech at the Turner Prize showed there is was wisdom with his age. Such characters are few and far between I am glad to have had him as a cultural reference in my time. Thanks George and best wishes to his family
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1019hrs Sender: Mitch Cuss
It is indeed a sad day for the music world. George embodied the very essence of the great Jazz singers as I see it. He was individual to the verge of eccentricity, musically accurate while still pushing boundaries, personality-wise he appeared supremely confident with just enough vulnerability for you to feel his pain. A "full on" character who will be missed in many arenas.
We are all the richer for having had George Melly on the soundtrack to our lives and it will be a long time before a reasonable replacement develops.
Mitch, Ireland. Trumpet.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1012hrs Sender: Ken Trinder
Sorry to hear of Georges death my wife saw him Barcelona a few years ago and he was fanatic. A great loss to the world of music.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@1011hrs Sender: Roger Ede
I have just heard the news report of George's death. That news transported me immediately back in time to the several occasions when George came to Mill Hill School to perform with John Chilton's Feetwarmers. Back in another life I was involved in the organisation of those events and I want to record what a wonderful, funny and warm man George proved to be. There was absolutely no hint of the cult of untouchable celebrity about him and his readiness to chat, socialise and enjoy a drink in the local pub will remain with me. The world has lost a unique character - and will be a much less colourful place for that loss. Please pass my condolences to his family.
Sent: Thursday 05July07@0952hrs Sender: Andrew
Just want to express my sympathies to family and friends of George Melly
Sent: Thursday 05July07@0939hrs Sender: Steffano Robbins
So sorry to hear the sad news today.
Bless George, may you rest in peace and join the great jazz orchestra in heaven. xx
Sent: Tuesday 03July07@1054hrs Sender: Julian
hallo there! met you about 20 yrs ago when you spoke on Mr Burro at the royal college, a right entertainment. happy to see you out and about around the Bush recently, all the best Julian
Sent: Saturday 30June07@1936hrs Sender: Graham
Would dearly love to perform "when my ship comes in" which I have played since 14 or so in the 70's from an early LP I had "Melly is at it Again"
Is there a source handy for chords used in original recording? One of my formative LPs and often shouted out drunkenly at Dominion in Edinburgh Festivals for it!
If Anyone can help with the above please drop us a line - Thanks Ed.
Sent: Friday 29June07@1040hrs Sender: Gary
After much umming and ahhing (and a good few cold drinks) I turned up to see George in concert on the second night of a two night run. I went alone as (well for a multitude of reasons) and settled in the bar. Feeling that I stuck out like a sore thumb (Nobby No-Mates) I was in awe as the man himself walked past me to approach a table of people in the corner. I moved a chair out of his way and he thanked me.
To cut a load of waffle slightly shorter, the bell went for the start of the show and I said to George that he had better be getting along as there was no show without Punch. He told me the band did the first twenty minutes so I got the drinks in. Just He and Me in the bar (Why everyone else had gone into another room when the man they had come to see was here will be a mystery to me forever) and despite our being strangers, decades apart in age, Georges initial hearing problems (this improved as the Stella and Scotch flowed) we got on like a house on fire.
I snuck into the hall as George came on stage, he gave me a name check and looked for me. After a great first half including Trouble in Mind (Only being familiar with Nina Simones rendition) We eventually took up where we left off after singing autographs (him not me) and again after the show. Tears of laughter rolled down my face as George told tale after tale late into the night. My only regret is that I didn't have a camera with me or my albums for him to sign.
Anyway, thank you George for one of the best nights of my life. Your Chum Gary X
Sent: Wednesday 27June07@1713hrs Sender: Sheila
I have been a fan of yours for years. The last time I saw you was at the Concorde Club in Eastleigh, Hampshire. I am a fellow Liverpudlian and you kindly signed your book for me. You also sang Lonely Boy for me and I was so thrilled.
I am so sorry to hear that you are not in the best of health and send you my love and best wishes for a full recovery. The world is short of characters like you. Please get better.
Sent Sunday 17June07@1015hrs Sender: Dean
Thank you for a very wonderful night at club 100. It was my girlfriend's first exposure to live jazz and she was truly enthralled. All the acts were superb, but finally getting a chance to see George live was breathtaking. He's been a personal hero of mine ever since I watched him on 'Gallery' when I should have been doing homework. It's a night we're going to remember for ever.
Sent: Thursday 14June07@2021hrs Sender: Bernard
George did you really do a gig at the Sandon in Anfield, If so missed it. Met you at the Ron Parry evening in Eric's club. Supercharge the band top of the bill , EXCELLENT NIGHT.....Read your trilogy boss reading and just ordered Slowing down. Ta ra
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