It is taking longer than expected to fetch the next song to play. The music should be playing soon. If you get tired of waiting, you can try reloading your browser.


Please check our Help page for information about troubleshooting Pandora on your browser.

Please ensure you are using the latest Flash Player.


If you are unable or do not wish to upgrade your Flash Player,
please try a different browser.


Please check our Help page for information about troubleshooting Pandora on your browser.
Your Pandora One subscription will expire shortly.
More Info
No Thanks
Your Pandora One trial will expire shortly.
Restore
Close
close
Your Pandora One trial subscription will expire shortly. Upgrade to continue unlimited, ad-free listening.
Upgrade Now
You've listened to hours of Pandora this month. Consider upgrading to Pandora One.
More Info
No Thanks
Close
Hi . Pandora is using Facebook to personalize your experience. Learn MoreNo Thanks
-0:00
0:00
Change Skin

We created Pandora to put the Music Genome Project directly in your hands

It’s a new kind of radio –
stations that play only music you like

 
Create an account for free. Register
Now Playing
Music Feed
My Profile
Create a Station
People who also like this

Billy Cotton & His Band

b. 6 May 1899, Westminster, London, England, d. 25 March 1969, London, England. The youngest of 10 children, Cotton sang solo treble in the choir of St. Margaret’s Church, Westminster. In 1914 he joined the army as a bugler-drummer and served in the Dardanelles Campaign in Gallipoli before returning to the UK and spending the rest of World War I in the Royal Flying Corps. After the war he drove London buses, played for Brentford Football Club as an amateur (and later, for the then Athenian league club Wimbledon), and raced motorcycles and cars. In the early 20s he played drums for various groups, including the Laurie Johnson Band at the 1924 British Empire Exhibition at Wembley and then formed his own London Savannah Band. Cotton gave up drumming to front the band in 1925 when Clem Bernard joined the organization as pianist/arranger and stayed for over 40 years as the musical brain behind the Cotton band. Initially they played the big dancehalls, including the Astoria in London’s Charing Cross Road, and top nightclubs such as Ciro’s, in both London and Paris.

During the 30s they played in cine-variety before becoming a theatre showband and introducing broad visual humour and saucy songs. Their records reflected the change with such songs as ‘Bessie Couldn’t Help It’, ‘She Was Only Somebody’s Daughter’ and ‘They All Start Whistling At Mary’, besides the ‘hotter’ numbers, ‘The New Tiger Rag’, ‘Truckin’’ and ‘Shine’, which featured Nat Gonella, Teddy Foster and the American trombonist and skilful tap-dancer Ellis Jackson. Sixteen examples of Cotton’s 30s style can be found on The Golden Age Of Billy Cotton. During World War II, Cotton toured France with ENSA and was put in charge of Air Training Corps entertainment, besides touring the music halls. After the war he boosted his declining variety theatre bookings with Wakey Wakey!!, a Sunday lunchtime BBC radio programme that became a national institution and ran for over 20 years. The material was much the same as ever, including ‘Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, What A Referee’, ‘Oh, Nicholas, Don’t Be So Ridiculous’, ‘Forty Fousand Fevvers On A Frush’, ‘The Dambusters March’, ‘The Sunshine Of Your Smile’, ‘Fall In And Follow Me’, ‘Maybe It’s Because I’m A Londoner’, all heralded by his theme, ‘Somebody Stole My Gal’. These tunes were played and sung by regulars Doreen Stevens, Johnny Johnson, Rita Williams and the Highlights, Kathy Kay (b. 20 November 1918, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England, d. 8 March 2005, Largs, Scotland), trumpeter Grisha Farfel and vocalist/general all-rounder Alan Breeze (b. 9 October 1909, London, England, d. 15 January 1980, England), ever-present with Cotton since 1932.

During the 50s Cotton had chart hits with ‘In A Golden Coach’ (to celebrate the 1953 Coronation), ‘I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus’, ‘Friends And Neighbours’ and ‘Puttin’ On The Style’. In 1957, following an unsatisfactory flirtation with commercial television, The Billy Cotton Band Show came to BBC Television. At 60 years of age and substantially built, Cotton danced with the Silhouettes, a line of dancing girls, sang with and insulted his favourite guest stars, Russ Conway, Alma Cogan and Max Bygraves, conducted the band, and joined in throwing cotton-wool balls into the audience during one of their favourite numbers, ‘I’ve Got A Lovely Bunch Of Coconuts’. By now he was one of the most popular figures in UK light entertainment. Some of the shows were produced by Cotton’s son, Bill Jnr., who later became Controller of BBC Television. In 1962, Cotton Snr. was voted ‘Showbusiness Personality Of The Year’. He also suffered a stroke, which slowed him down, although he did work again during the 60s until his untimely death while watching a boxing match at Wembley in March 1969. He was buried at St. Margaret’s Church where he had once been a choirboy.
full bio

Comments

Report as inappropriate
spencersmith 3 9 0 1
Billy's recording of "A Nice Cup of Tea" on the Vocalion reissue is the definitive version of the song...his "Nobody Loves a Fairy when She's Forty" is also delightful.. . a top band by any standard.
Report as inappropriate
I immediately get happy listening to this upbeat band! Love it!
Report as inappropriate
Another one of those Brit Bands unknown to me, and so very good they are.

We're sorry, but a browser plugin or firewall may be preventing Pandora from loading.

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please upgrade to a more current browser.

Please check our Help page for more information.

It looks like your browser does not support modern SSL/TLS. Please upgrade your browser.

If you need help, please email: pandora-support@pandora.com.

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please upgrade to a more current browser
or install a newer version of Flash (v.10 or later).

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please install Adobe Flash (v.10 or later).

[69, 106, 90, 102, 105, 101, 110, 102, 89, 95, 89, 100, 105, 102, 99, 92, 73, 90, 112, 93, 93, 127, 103, 112, 96, 81, 82, 80, 122, 76, 101, 105, 119, 120, 89, 102, 122, 89, 125, 87, 95, 108, 87, 121, 115, 95, 93, 93, 73, 110, 94, 119, 80, 112, 65, 123, 86, 77, 112, 104, 123, 77, 92, 74, 65, 126, 69, 64, 114, 77, 114, 77, 71, 79, 96, 106, 113, 74, 89, 126, 66, 101, 114, 90, 93, 110, 73, 123, 82, 118, 69, 79, 118, 111, 115, 97, 107, 89, 91, 94, 83, 121, 71, 92, 64, 73, 89, 81, 90, 114, 107, 82, 115, 98, 104, 65, 98, 86, 83, 114, 124, 82, 126, 72, 85, 119, 65, 98, 111, 74, 95, 105, 107, 95, 72, 74, 119, 79, 127, 92, 118, 75, 64, 123, 83, 69, 110, 124, 117, 77, 101, 97, 123, 124, 76, 77, 91, 112, 76, 111, 122, 107, 121, 110, 67, 78, 77, 70, 99, 91, 121, 96, 121, 101, 80, 79, 105, 76, 104, 66, 102, 116, 118, 122, 73, 69, 110, 83, 87, 116, 77, 127, 119, 75, 68, 93, 87, 82, 93, 93, 72, 117, 114, 97, 120, 81, 76, 123, 118, 115, 111, 111, 110, 89, 97, 95, 73, 93, 85, 74, 113, 115, 126, 88, 78, 79, 111, 77, 104, 102, 89, 76, 75, 120, 126, 79, 125, 82, 66, 97, 105, 92, 117, 76, 118, 118, 99, 87, 73, 80, 91, 111, 119, 88, 113, 66, 105, 116, 66, 90, 91, 78, 67, 93, 68, 83, 65, 119, 105, 66, 73, 110, 104, 116, 97, 78, 67, 112, 88, 88, 66, 67, 89, 90, 121, 115, 124, 91, 106, 88, 65, 68, 101, 65, 72, 100, 90, 74, 93, 117, 126, 70, 85, 103, 84, 106, 81, 94, 69, 108, 68, 119, 67, 76, 73, 95, 104, 67, 95, 92, 112, 103, 115, 104, 83, 114, 119, 119, 96, 109, 115, 72, 111, 113, 89, 126, 118, 86, 90, 76, 69, 92, 80, 125, 93, 70, 76, 98, 69, 120, 75, 68, 69, 74, 125, 123, 88, 102, 108, 84, 124, 84, 85, 117, 98, 121, 89, 75, 90, 122, 97, 87, 114, 102, 90, 92, 120, 68, 119, 71, 81, 99, 94, 113, 91, 124, 108, 99, 117, 117, 110, 126, 78, 72, 90, 73, 111, 93, 123, 88, 87, 117, 124, 98, 86, 126, 124, 66, 105, 120, 79, 88, 84, 91, 64, 91, 123, 101, 76, 77, 106, 76, 69, 71, 97, 127, 92, 102, 84, 89, 81, 80, 68, 73, 112, 111, 98, 97, 97, 91, 111, 69, 126, 121, 89, 67, 118, 71, 118, 85, 115, 97, 67, 92, 120, 81, 93, 123, 95, 113, 107, 74, 101, 124, 87, 90, 103, 89, 108, 127, 80, 100, 123, 127, 127, 96, 74, 91, 83, 84, 79, 72, 86, 117, 105, 81, 78, 123, 68, 124, 93, 78, 75, 101, 116, 108, 127, 118, 78, 70, 119, 67, 78, 111, 80, 75, 68, 84, 127, 100, 99, 67]