Uncle Harry

Songfacts®:

  • Although Noël Coward - the man, his plays and music - had been well known to American audiences since the 1920s, and television had been around nearly as long, he did not make his TV debut, as a performer, until October 1955, in a CBS special with Mary Martin.
    "Uncle Harry" was the first number he performed on that show; a novelty song about a relative who becomes a missionary, it went down a storm. Coward wrote it in Jamaica in 1944, and it went into his repertoire for entertaining the troops. Slightly risqué - nothing unusual for him - it may have been based extremely loosely on a relative; he really did have an Uncle Harry.
  • The sheet music was published by Chappell in 1955, but according to the Noël Coward Society, it is not to be relied on for performances. "Uncle Harry" is also said to be among the top thirty Coward songs royalty-wise. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2

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