Thursday 28 January 2021

'ow do!

I'm a sucker for the spoken word intro. Who can forget Ian Hunter's laconic "'ello" on Once Bitten, Twice Shy or Brian Connolly's now legendary " Are you ready, Steve?" heralding the Sweet's Ballroom Blitz? Not me, that's for sure. 

I'll wager you'll have your favourites too tucked away in the recesses of your record collections. The Damned have got a couple that spring to mind. Can it really be 45 years since the Damned's Dave Vanian's uttered the immortal "Is she really going out with him?" before Rat Scabies fell into his drum kit marking the start of New Rose?

I said they'd got a couple; here's the other one.

The Damned - Love Song (1978)

And here's the source material. It comes from a series of music hall monologues recited by the actor Jack Howarth. Howarth, best known for playing the miserable Albert Tatlock in Coronation Street kicks off proceedings with a very dry "Ladies and gentlemen, 'ow do."

Jack Howarth - 'ow do (1971) 

Jack Howarth (1896-1984)


  1. 'TV Stars' by The Skids celebrated Albert Tatlock, yelling his name out in the chorus.

    1. That's right, Furry - the B Side to 'Into the Valley' if memory serves. With copious shoutouts to Meg Mortimer into the bargain. Which reminds me, I've got a fabulous photo of Billy Idol and Tony James from Generation X on the set of Crossroads; next time I write about Billy (which surely won't be long) I'll put it up.

  2. Ooh, yes, you've got us thinking. Love the intro to New Rose. Mr SDS has just recalled the New York Dolls 'Looking For a Kiss' intro, and my memory of first hearing the Pistols' 'No Fun' and John's sneering preamble is deeply embedded in my mind too.

    1. "Right, here we go now..." Yep, who can forget that sneer?

  3. Does Diamond Dogs album versh count..

    Or this offbeat beaut..

  4. In the tradition of Stanley Unwin on that Small Faces LP side!

    I always wondered if that Paul McCartney line "we're so sorry, Uncle Albert" had owt to do with Albert Tatlock from Corrie!

    Definitely think The Skids' Into The Valley is one for the ages!