Dick Leaver Pepper (24 June 1889 – 15 October 1962) was a musician, actor, and writer for the BBC.
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters are at Broadcasting House in Westminster, London, and it is the world's oldest national broadcasting organisation and the largest broadcaster in the world by number of employees. It employs over 20,950 staff in total, 16,672 of whom are in public sector broadcasting. The total number of staff is 35,402 when part-time, flexible, and fixed-contract staff are included.
Born in Putney, Pepper was the son of Will C. Pepper, founder of a long-running concert party called the White Coons, and the older brother of Harry S. Pepper. His middle name of Leaver came from his mother, whose name was Annie Leaver before her marriage.
Putney is a district in south-west London, England in the London Borough of Wandsworth. It is centred 6.1 miles (9.8 km) south-west of Charing Cross. The area is identified in the London Plan as one of 35 major centres in Greater London.
Harry Stephen Pepper was a British pianist, songwriter, composer, actor, and BBC producer, whose career stretched from Edwardian era seaside entertainments to BBC television in the 1950s.
Brought up by his father as an entertainer, Pepper picked up the banjo from those around him in the White Coons, and he also trained as a cinematograph operator. In the 1930s, he formed the "Kentucky Banjo Team" with Joe Morley and Tarrant Bailey, for a BBC Home Service radio programme called The Kentucky Minstrels. In April 1934, he contributed an article to Radio Times on "Minstrels and Banjo-playing". He went on to become a writer for the BBC.
The banjo is a four-, five-, or six-stringed instrument with a thin membrane stretched over a frame or cavity as a resonator, called the head, which is typically circular. The membrane is typically made of plastic, although animal skin is still occasionally used. Early forms of the instrument were fashioned by Africans in the United States, adapted from African instruments of similar design. The banjo is frequently associated with folk, Irish traditional, and country music. Banjo can also be used in some Rock Songs. Countless Rock bands, such as The Eagles, Led Zeppelin, and The Allman Brothers, have used the five-string banjo in some of their songs. Historically, the banjo occupied a central place in African-American traditional music and the folk culture of rural whites before entering the mainstream via the minstrel shows of the 19th century. The banjo, along with the fiddle, is a mainstay of American old-time music. It is also very frequently used in traditional ("trad") jazz.
Joe Morley was a British classic banjoist who achieved great fame and renown in his homeland and abroad. During his lifetime, he composed hundreds of banjo solos.
The BBC Home Service was a British national radio station that broadcast from 1939 until 1967, when it became the current BBC Radio 4.
In 1925, Pepper married Eva C. Fazan. He died at Ashford Hospital, Stanwell, on 15 October 1962, aged 73, leaving an estate worth £9,212. At the time of his death he was living at Little Prouton, 93 Chertsey Lane, Staines, Middlesex. His widow was still living there when she died in 1968.
Stanwell is an urban and suburban village in the Surrey borough of Spelthorne, 16 miles (26 km) WSW of Charing Cross and centred 1⁄2 mile (800 m) from the southern boundary of London Heathrow Airport, adjoining its cargo depot. It is the northernmost settlement in Surrey.
Staines-upon-Thames is a town on the River Thames in Surrey, England. Historically part of Middlesex, it was known to the Romans as Pontes or Ad Pontes, then as Stanes and subsequently Staines.
Barry Took was an English writer, television presenter and comedian. His decade and a half writing partnership with Marty Feldman led to the television series Bootsie and Snudge and the radio comedy Round the Horne and other projects.
Christopher John Tarrant, is an English radio and television broadcaster and comedian. He presented the ITV children's television show Tiswas from 1974 to 1981, and the game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? from 1998 to 2014. He was a Capital Radio host from 1984 to 2004.
Richard Bernard Murdoch was a British actor and entertainer.
Eugene Lee Coon was an American screenwriter, television producer and novelist. He is best remembered for his work on the original Star Trek series.
William Maurice Denham, OBE was an English character actor, who appeared in over 100 television programmes and films in his long career.
Joel Walker Sweeney, also known as Joe Sweeney, was a musician and early blackface minstrel performer. He is known for popularizing the playing of the banjo.
Hokum is a particular song type of American blues music—a humorous song which uses extended analogies or euphemistic terms to make sexual innuendos. This trope goes back to early blues recordings and is used from time to time in modern American blues and blues rock.
Ernest Hogan was the first African-American entertainer to produce and star in a Broadway show and helped to popularize the musical genre of ragtime.
Charles Denier Warren or Denier Warren was an Anglo-American actor who appeared extensively on stage and screen from the early 1930s to late 1960s, mostly in Great Britain. He was the son of Charles Warren and Marguerite Warren, née Fish.
Lily May Ledford was an American clawhammer banjo and fiddle player. After gaining regional radio fame in the 1940s and 1950s as head of the Coon Creek Girls, one of the first all-female string bands to appear on radio, Ledford went on to gain national renown as a solo artist during the American folk music revival of the 1960s. In 1985, she was awarded a National Heritage Fellowship.
Bob Coltman is an American singer of traditional songs, songwriter, guitarist and banjoist, and author.
Jane Carr was the stage name of English stage and film actress Rita Brunstrom.
Allan Morley was a British comic artist. He first worked for DC Thomson in 1925, drawing a number of comic strips for the Sunday Post and for DC Thomson's story papers including The Wizard, where he drew Nero and Zero. He also drew a number of strips for both The Beano and The Dandy from the late thirties until the early fifties. He drew Keyhole Kate, Hungry Horace and Freddie the Fearless Fly, three long-running strips which first appeared in the first issue of The Dandy. He also drew a number of strips for The Beano, including Big Fat Joe, which appeared in the comic's very first issue. The last time he drew for The Beano was the last strip of The Magic Lollipops in issue 475. Allan Morley died in Kent on 5 September 1960.
Leon Rosselson is an English songwriter and writer of children's books. After his early involvement in the folk music revival in Britain, he came to prominence, singing his own satirical songs, in the BBC's topical TV programme of the early 1960s, That Was The Week That Was. He toured Britain and abroad, singing mainly his own songs and accompanying himself with acoustic guitar.
Pete George Hampton was an American vocalist, harmonicist, banjo player, and vaudevillian from Bowling Green, Kentucky. He was part of various Vaudeville groups of which the most important were In Dahomey and his own Darktown Entertainers. He made more than 150 recordings during his career in the United Kingdom and Germany between 1903 and 1911. In 1904, he made the first harmonica recording by an African American, regarded as a pioneering example in the development of the blues harmonica style.
Kentucky Minstrels is a 1934 British musical film directed by John Baxter. It was made at Twickenham Studios as a quota quickie for release by Universal Pictures.
Charles Adam Asbury was an American banjo player and pioneer recording artist active from 1876 to 1897. On the stage, he played parts that emphasized his multiracial ancestry, and his recording work was largely in the minstrel tradition. His surviving recordings are the earliest examples of the stroke style of banjo.