George Melly(1926-2007), Jazz singer, critic, writer and lecturer
(Alan) George Heywood Melly
Sitter in 8 portraits
Melly sang with Mick Mulligan's Magnolia Jazz Band 1946-61, and with John Chilton's Feetwarmers from 1974. His early experiences in the Royal Navy and as an assistant at the London Gallery are recalled in Rum, Bum, and Cocertina (1977) and Don't Tell Sybill (1997). With Wally Fawkes (Trog) he wrote the Strip cartoon Flook (1956-71). From 1965-74 he was the Observer's 'unconstrained' critic for pop music, film and television, and lectured widely on art. Melly became a familiar media figure with his flamboyant dress sense, in the 1970s he adopted his trademark 1930s suit and fedora. His books include Owning Up (1964), and works on surrealism and primitive art.
by Michael Woods
bromide print, 2005