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Leslie Sarony

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Leslie Sarony (born Leslie Legge Frye 22 January 1897 - 12 February 1985) was a British entertainer, singer and songwriter. Sarony was born in Surbiton, Surrey and died in London.

He began his stage career aged 14 with the group Park Eton’s Boys. In 1913 he appeared in the revue Hello Tango.

In the Great War, Sarony served in the London Scottish regiment in France and Salonika. His stage credits after the war include revues, pantomimes and musicals, including the London productions of Show Boat and Rio Rita.

Sarony became well known in the 1920s and 1930s as a variety artist and radio performer. In 1928 he made a short film made in the Phonofilm sound-on-film system, Hot Water and Vegetabuel. In this film, he sang, interspersed with his comic patter, the two eponymous songs – the first as a typical Cockney geezer outside a pub, the second (still outside the pub) as a less typical vegetable rights campaigner (“Don’t be cruel to a vegetabuel”).

He went on to make a number of recordings of novelty songs, such as He Played his Ukulele as the Ship Went Down, including several with Jack Hylton and his Orchestra. He teamed up with Leslie Holmes in 1935 under the name The Two Leslies. The partnership lasted until 1946. Their recorded output included such gems as “I’m a Little Prairie Flower”.

His song “Jollity Farm” was covered by Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band.

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