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Norman MacPhail Blair


Norman MacPhail BLAIR .... aka 'Maurice Elwin' (1896, Uddingston, Scotland - 1975, Hampstead, England)
Gaelic Singer, Crooner of Popular Ballads, and a Teacher of Music

Examples of his singing ....

Elwin Chorus 1927 Drifting And Dreaming
Elwin 1928 Theid Mi Gad Amharc (I'll come back and see you)
Elwin 1931 As Time Goes By Savoy Hotel Orpheans
Elwin 1931 My Sunshine Came On A Rainy Day
Elwin 1931 Save A Little Love For Me
Elwin 1933 Stormy Weather
Maurice Elwin 1934 One Morning In May
Elwin 1934 If You Were The Only Girl In The World
Elwin 1937 A Dicky Bird Told Me So
Elwin 1937 The Little Old Church In The Valley

For My Baby
A Great Great Girl
Didn't Tell You
T'aint No Sin
Song Of Happiness
Home
Let's All Sing That Lard Song
Sometimes I'm Happy
Because My Baby Don't Mean May Be Now

Norman MacPhail Blair [aka Maurice Elwin ..one of his many pseudonyms as a professional singer] was born on the 14th of June, 1896 in 38 Kyle Park, Uddingston, Bothwell, Lanark, Scotland, to Donald Blair, a Stockbroker's Cashier, and Eliza Margaret McLaggan, Teacher of Music, who married in Govan, Glasgow, Scotland on the 19th of March, 1880. Norman was the youngest of six children, five boys, Donald, James, William, Alexander and himself ... and one girl, Eliza. Norman's father, Donald Blair Snr., was born to a John Blair [Gardener] and a Janet MacPhail [Gardener's Assistant] in May, 1852. There is no record of a marriage, but Donald received the Blair surname on his baptism in Govan Parish Church on the 21st of May, 1852. According to the1861 and 1871 Censuses for Govan, Donald Blair Snr.'s mother lived with him as a Janet MacPhail born c. 1817 in Morvern, Argyll, Scotland ...a Gaelic speaking area. There is no sign of Donald's father, John Blair, in either of these two Censuses. On Janet's death in Uddingston on the 16th of January, 1886, she is recorded as Janet MacPhail, an unmarried woman. Norman MacPhail Blair began his career as Maurice Elwin in Glasgow by singing ballads before moving on to performing, not only popular songs, but also some in Gaelic. He moved to England in the 1920s and 1930s where he appeared regularly with the Savoy Orpheans led by the Carroll Gibbons as well as becoming a singing teacher near his home in Hampstead. Norman's obituary in the local Hampstead paper in 1975 describes him as, one of the most recorded artists in the world and that he had made hundreds of 78rpm recordings under many pseudonyms. His death was registered in Hampstead in December 1975 and he was buried in Hampstead Cemetery.


























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