Malcolm McEachern


Malcolm McEachern

Walter Malcom Neil McEachern (1 April 1883 – 17 January 1945) was a noted Australian bass singer who enjoyed a successful career in the United Kingdom, both as a concert soloist and as one half of the comic musical duo Flotsam and Jetsam.

Contents

Birth, singing career and death

He was born in Albury, New South Wales, the sixth of 13 children of Archibald Hector McEachern and his wife, Rebecca Mary.

On 2 February 1916, McEachern married pianist Hazel Hogarth Doyle, who later became his accompanist and provided the musical direction for his career.

Career and death

During World War I, McEachern went on a tour of Australia with the great Australian soprano Nellie Melba. Also in the touring company were Ella Caspers, Ada Crossley and Marie Narelle.

In 1921 McEachern went to England with his wife, where he was hailed as one of the world's best bass vocalists. He was especially acclaimed as an oratorio singer although his voice was equally well suited to the demands of opera; but unlike his finest contemporary rival among English-language basses, Norman Allin, he elected not to pursue a career in that particular art form. McEachern did appear, however, in an array of staged Gilbert and Sullivan Savoy operettas under the batons of the famous conductors Sir Henry Wood and Sir John Barbirolli.

In early 1926, McEachern forged a light-entertainment collaboration with Bentley Collingwood Hilliam, a pianist from Yorkshire. Their act proved to be a great success with British audiences and they became famous as Mr. Flotsam and Mr. Jetsam.[1]

McEachern was diagnosed with cancer of the oesophagus and died after an operation in London on 17 January 1945.

His name is commemorated in Australia by McEachern Crescent in the Canberra suburb of Melba.

Recordings

McEachern made a total of 187 studio recordings, including pieces of music from opera, operetta and oratorio as well as a number of popular songs of the day. These records display the impressive depth, power and tonal richness of his voice and the excellence of his technique.

One of his English-language 78-rpm discs, made with his countryman Harold Williams, of "The Gendarmes' Duet" from Jacques Offenbach's Geneviève de Brabant, is considered to be a classic recording. Produced in 1933, it has been re-issued many times since and is available on CD.

Bibliographies

  • B. and F. Mackenzie, Singers of Australia (Melb, 1967); 'Death of Mr. McEachern', Times (London), 18 Jan 1945, p 6; Sydney Morning Herald, 18 Jan 1945; 'Obituary', Times (London), 19 Jan 1945, p 8.
  • Print Publication Details: Peter Burgis, 'McEachern, Walter Malcolm Neil (1883 - 1945)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 10, Melbourne University Press, 1986, pp 264-265.

References

External links


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • McEachern (surname) — MacEachern, McEachern Family name Meaning son of Eichthighearn Region of origin Ireland, Scotland Language(s) of origin Gaelic Related names Eichthighearn; MacEacharn; McEacharn …   Wikipedia

  • Melba, Australian Capital Territory — Melba Canberra, Australian Capital Territory Population: 3,267 (2006 census) …   Wikipedia

  • Mr. Flotsam and Mr. Jetsam — were an Anglo Australian musical comedy duo of the 1920s and 1930s. Mr. Flotsam s real name was Bentley Collingwood Hilliam (1890–1968) and Mr. Jetsam s real name was Malcolm McEachern (1883–1945). Hilliam wrote most of their songs, played the… …   Wikipedia

  • Music of Australia — Arts in Australia Culture of Australia Architecture Art Cinema Comic books Cuisine Dance …   Wikipedia

  • 1939 in music — Events*Publication of Music Here and Now , book by Ernst Krenek *March 23 – Béla Bartók s Violin Concerto No. 2 (the only violin concerto known to be by him at the time) is premiered by Zoltán Székely and the Concertgebouw Orchestra conducted by… …   Wikipedia

  • Savage Club — The Savage Club, founded in 1857 is a gentlemen s club in London.Background to the nameTwo possible explanations are known to exist for the club s name.The first is that it was named, in a frolicsome humour , after Richard Savage, ...a thoroughly …   Wikipedia

  • The Record of Singing — is the most important compilation of singing from the first half of the 20th century, the era of the 78 rpm record.It was published by EMI, successor to the British company His Master s Voice (better known as HMV), the leading organization in the …   Wikipedia

  • Harold Williams (baritone) — Harold Williams (3 September, 1893 – 5 June 1976) was an Australian baritone, born in Sydney. Williams made his operatic debut in 1921 as Wolfram in Richard Wagner s Tannhäuser . In 1929 he toured Australia with the pianist William Murdoch.In… …   Wikipedia

  • Chu-Chin-Chow — Filmdaten Deutscher Titel: Chu Chin Chow Originaltitel: Chu Chin Chow Produktionsland: Vereinigtes Königreich Erscheinungsjahr: 1934 Länge: 102 Minuten Originalsprache: Englisch …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Chu-Chin-Chow (1934) — Filmdaten Deutscher Titel Chu Chin Chow Produktionsland Vereinigtes Königreich …   Deutsch Wikipedia


We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.