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date: 06 August 2020

Lauder, Sir Harry (Maclennan)locked

  • Deane L. Root

Extract

(Maclennan)

(b Portobello, nr Edinburgh, Aug 4, 1870; d Strathaven, Feb 26, 1950). Scottish baritone music-hall singer and composer. As a young man he won prizes at local singing contests and gained attention at concert parties, and after deciding to become a professional entertainer in 1894 he toured Scotland with the violinist Mackenzie Murdoch.

Lauder’s most successful years as a singer coincided with the most popular years of the music hall, between 1900 and World War I. During this time he became known not only in the best London music halls but also, through concert tours, in Europe and North America. During both world wars he was an ardent recruiter, and was knighted for his efforts (1919). He performed at Buckingham Palace and for several American presidents. Later he made many gramophone recordings for the Victor label.

Lauder’s stage personality was a stereotyped Scotsman, with a kilt and a generalized brogue. He often included an interlude of patter before the final verse of a song, sometimes ending with a jolly laugh; he preferred the sentimental appeal of love-songs and images of his home country, and usually ended his performances in a serious vein with ...

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Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford, 1885-1901, suppls., 1901-96)