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Tuesday, 7 August, 2001, 13:15 GMT 14:15 UK
Adler in his own words
Larry Adler
Larry Adler: A self-taught mouth organ player
The acclaimed harmonica musician Larry Adler who has died in London, wrote a review column for Boz Magazine called Larry Adler's Mouthpiece.

BBC News Online brings you extracts from his last column from the May 2001 issue.

"Now that the music room at Pizza on the Park [London restaurant] is officially Larry's Room I'm taking a paternal interest in the place. I heard one singer, Holly Penfield, there recently. In fact singer is too weak a word. This Holly does not go lightly, she is a one-woman explosion. Her 15-minute set is a passionate flirtation with the audience. She spends more time among the audience flirting that she does on stage singing. It is a carefully produced flirtation and it is never overdone. I wish other singers could hear this bombshell, they could learn how to make more and better use of their time. I picked up a few points myself."

Adler on Holly Penfield's performance at Pizza on the Park

Dennis King and Sarah Redmond are worthy partners. Mr King, an excellent performer, supplies all of the music as well. I wish his name didn't recall Dennis King, who was the kind of leading man who could both swash and buckle. I recall him in the Vagabond King (I thought a vagabond was a bum) singing Give Me Some Men Who Are Stout Hearted Men and I'll Soon Give You Stout-Hearted Men. Well maybe I haven't got that exactly right. Give me a break. I'm only 87.

Adler on Beauty and the Beards at the King's Head, Islington

Celebrities Behaving Badly, made uncomfortable watching. I felt pity, mainly for the name performers who were, when at their worst, mainly swearing at the press. The women seemed to swear more than the men. The programme stripped the performers of their dignity. I am lucky enough to have worked with two fine gentlemen, Jack Benny and Fred Astaire. I never saw either of them display temperament and I have learned from their example. Swearing, in English, is a monotonous business anyway, depending on one word which serves as adjective and verb. Dreary.

Adler on TV programme Celebrities Behaving Badly.

I am increasingly irritated by the meaningless reply to ordinary questions; the invariable reply is "no problem". Well who said there was one? If you ask a waiter, say, for a bit more sugar, you can bet on the response. If you ask what time it is, same answer. No problem, eh? Then we must make one.

See also:

07 Aug 01 | Music
Adler inspires warm tributes
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