Vivian Stanshall

Victor Anthony Stanshall

Also known as Stanshall, U. Stanshall, V Stanshall, V. Stanshall, V.A. Stanshall, Viv, Viv Stanshall, Vivian Standshall
This performer (group) in the Internet: http://gingergeezer.net/

Discography of Vivian Stanshall:

# Release title Total tracks Type of release is Imprint date Label
1 Sir Henry At Rawlinson End 15 Audio 1995-00-00 Virgin Chattering Classics
2 Terry Keeps His Clips On 2 Audio 1980-09-00 Charisma
3 Sir Henry At Rawlinson End 15 Audio 1978-00-00 Charisma
4 Teddy Boys Don't Knit 16 Audio Charisma
5 Sir Henry At Ndidi's Kraal 3 Audio 1984
6 Teddy Boys Don't Knit 18 Audio 1981 Charisma
7 Lakonga 2 Audio 1974 Warner Bros. Records
8 Calypso To Colapso 2 Audio 1981 Charisma
9 The Young Ones 3 Audio 1976-11-00 Harvest
10 Men Opening Umbrellas Ahead 12 Audio 2010-08-09 Harkit Records
11 Sir Henry At Ndidi's Kraal 2 Audio 1984 Demon Verbals
12 Sir Henry At Ndidi's Kraal 3 Audio 1999 Edsel Records
13 Suspicion 2 Audio 1970-12-11 Fly Records (3)
14 Labio-Dental-Fricative 2 Audio 1970 Liberty
15 Men Opening Umbrellas Ahead 10 Audio 2012 Poppydisc
16 Labio-Dental Fricative 2 Audio Liberty
17 Labio-Dental Fricative 2 Audio Liberty
18 Teddy Boys Don't Knit 18 Audio 1981 Charisma
19 Labio-Dental Fricative 2 Audio Liberty
20 The Young Ones 3 Audio 1976-11-00 Harvest
21 Men Opening Umbrellas Ahead 10 Audio 1974 Warner Bros. Records
22 Men Opening Umbrellas Ahead 10 Audio 2012 Poppydisc


Vivian Stanshall was born on 21 March 1943 in Shillingford, Oxfordshire. First rising to fame as an integral member of the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band in the late 1960s, Stanshall embarked on an idiosyncratic solo career when the Bonzos split up in 1970, astonishing in its variety and fertility but also broken up by long periods of inactivity as a consequence of his problems with alcoholism and depression.

Perhaps his most famous creation was the saga of Rawlinson End, sprawling spoken-word pieces interspersed with original songs. The stories began with a relatively short track on the final Bonzo Dog Band album ‘Let’s Make Up and Be Friendly’ but grew into 20-minute pieces on the John Peel Show on Radio 1, and resultant albums, from 1975 onwards. Depicting a world of English aristocracy that was part P.G. Wodehouse, part Mervyn Peake, they were a showcase for Stanshall’s intricate wordplay and surreal imagination, along with his mellifluous and elastic voice.

Although Stanshall could be notoriously erratic and difficult to work with, he was involved in a number of collaborations with such artists as Robert Calvert, Eric Clapton, Keith Moon and Steve Winwood, and also created two solo albums notable for their varied musical styles and lyrics full of his perennial loves of rhyming slang, absurdist puns and tongue-twisters.

After a period of creative resurgence in the late 1980s that saw a number of Rawlinson End sessions for John Peel and a West End staging of his musical play ‘Stinkfoot’ (partly financed by Stephen Fry and Peter Gabriel), Stanshall’s drinking worsened in the 1990s and he perished in a fire at his flat in London on 5 March 1995, probably caused by an overturned lamp as he slept.

He left behind him a small but rich legacy of comic and musical originality, belying his popular image as simply the man who announced the instruments on ‘Tubular Bells’.


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