Eric Morecambe


The Morecambe family make music

Eric Morecambe with the ukulele banjo

Eric Morecambe was of course famous as one half of the variety and TV comedy duo Morecambe and Wise. Their hugely popular and successful TV shows made them a favourite of millions, and thanks to repeat broadcasts and videos the boys are still making us laugh today.

But did you know Eric was a uke player? Mike Mitchell has provided two photos (left) which show Eric Morecambe strumming a banjo uke. The first (dated 1932) is of Eric with his parents George and Sadie. The second ('do not adjust your set' - the picture quality is terrible!) is dated 1938.

Can anyone give us more information about Eric Morecambe's use of the ukulele please? Did he play it on stage... and was he a good musician? He certainly was a genius of comedy and a great performer, so chances are he learnt the uke to a competent level! Let's hope someone can tell us more!

Please click here to e-mail!

ELIZABETH TAIT of the Eric Morecambe Fan Club writes...

As far as I am aware Eric didn't play the ukelele a great deal. He was taught to play,along with other musical intruments, at his mother's insistence. She always instilled in Eric to learn as many instruments as possible and he ended up being a passable pianist because of it. He really could play although he would tell everyone otherwise - to the point of denying it! GRAHAM McCANN, Morecambe & Wise biographer states that for Eric, 'George Formby became something of a personal hero,' and also describes how his mother persuaded him to take up 'the piano, the clarinet, the trumpet, the euphonium, the accordion and the mandolin!'


Eric's final performance was at the Roses Theatre, Tewkesbury on 28 May 1984, and also on the bill was Alan Randall, famous for his multi-instrumental act featuring a George Formby impersonation. Ian Gridgeman has sent in this great photo, which was taken just before the show, of Eric playing Alan's Gibson UB3 banjo-uke, previously owned by Formby. Eric Morecambe with Alan Randall's Formby UB3