Ooh, Roger's Kenneth Williams. Remember Freddie 'Parrot Face' Davies? And Tiny Tim? Then there were his Rolf Harris and Tommy Cooper...
...and Roger's Tom Jones
For a short while Roger and I teamed up, performing together.
Roger had become a skilled and sensitive vocal musician, but he maintained that he was above all an entertainer and that meant making his audience laugh. He delighted in his daft comedy impressions.
In the heyday of his solo cabaret days, Roger's most memorable performances were of his own or co-written songs - some fast and witty, others downright brash and daft, a few whistful. A handful were recorded on his LP, 'Roger Dee Live': 'Victor the Vampire', 'Why She Moved Away' , 'Love Thy Neighbour', Outing of the Year' and 'Ancestral Gents' .
Highlights of his act were numbers in which he sang with a zany verve new lyrics set to light music melodies.
Roger and Bill Solly set 'The Motorist' to 'The Trisch-Trasch Polka', presenting a nervous, harassed, novice driver. And Roger took their 'Holiday for Strings' at an ever increasing speed, recounting an orchestral string section taking time off, having fun at the seaside. "On my life, it's Jascha Heifetz!" The harp was "highly-strung".
Roger and I wrote updated words to 'Top Hat, White Tie and Tails' for a skinhead character bouncing around to a funky beat and singing about wearing a tee-shirt, bovver boots and jeans: "Vote for Enoch Powell and Alf Garnett / They're the skin 'ead kings."
Most stunningly, 'The Supermarket' was Roger's own word-tumbling lyric giving a frustrated shopper's hectic account of filling his basket with unwanted goods, having gone into the store for "only one tin of peas," sung to 'The Post-Horn Gallop'.
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