Song of the Week: Al Bowlly, When That Man Is Dead and Gone (1941)

I had intended to post this new ‘Song of the Week’ back three weeks ago to commemorate an anniversary.

Or, to be perfectly precise about the date, at ten past three in the morning of 17th April, the day and time on which singer Al Bowlly–43 years old and at the peak of his brilliant career–was killed by a Luftwaffe parachute mine that detonated just outside his flat at 32 Duke Street, London, just off Piccadilly. He appears to have died instantly from a head wound.

As we now celebrate the 75th anniversary of VE Day, I think it rather apt that Al Bowlly should be back here today, 8th May, to give us one more rendition of the song he recorded, with Jimmy Mesene, just two weeks before his death: ‘When That Man Is Dead and Gone’.

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