Britain's Most Loved and Best Comedy Double Act

Audition Songs

Feature from 2011

Eric at an audition

Young Ernie
Both Eric and Ernie trod the board as teenagers and pre-teenagers, hoping to be spotted and plucked from the dingy clubs for a bright and lucrative future.

Amongst the talent shows there was a huge breadth of acts including ventriloquists, accordion players, dancers, story tellers, comedians, singers and double acts. Each tried to tailor their material to best suit their act and most used common songs of the times if the lyrics or style fitted.

Eric and Ernie were no different and both had their own ‘signature’ songs.

Eric used a song originally by Ella Shields from the 1930’s called I’m not All There. Ella sang it dressed as a man, an early drag act, and the lyrics had obvious double meanings about what was missing.

I’m not all there, there’s something missing
I’m not all there, so folks declare
They call me Looby, Looby, nothing but a great big Booby
Point and say that’s where you want it
But that’s just where I’ve got it
I know they think I’m slow
Let them think, let them think, I don’t care
When I go to the races, my fancy to back
If I back a winner, they give me my money back
‘Cause I’m not supposed to be all there
Let them think, let them think, I don’t mind
Courting couples in the park, on any night you’ll find
If you stay, they’ll separate, for love’s not always blind
But they let me stay and watch them, and they never seem to mind
‘Cause I’m not supposed to be all there

Eric portrayed the song in a different light, either knowingly or not, and shifted the song to represent a gormless, dopey spectacled child.

Ernie’s song was a little different and could be classed as ‘cute’ to get the audience on his side.

The song was originally by music hall act Nellie Wallace and ran to several versus however it is difficult to know if Ernie did the full rendition or just the catchy chorus, as depicted in interviews and books.

Let's have a tiddley at the milk bar
Let's make a night of it tonight
Let's have a tiddley at the milk bar
Let's paint the town a lover-ly white
You'll buy half a pint, I'll buy half a pint
We'll try to drink a pint somehow
So let's have a tiddley at the milk bar
And drink to the dear ol' cow.

Ernie actually performed this song later in 1978 as part of the 8th series for the BBC. A routine depicted him auditioning for Hughie Green in an Opportunity Knocks sketch.

© 2011

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