Chapter One The family – Houses and streets – The music hall beckons – Development of the music hall – The Royal Aquarium – A ‘real’ job.
Chapter Two The Opera Comique – Singing for his supper – Aldershot barracks – Margate and the minstrels – The death of a friend.
Chapter Three A new leaf – On the halls – The Swansea impasse – Landladies and digs – The malevolent music hall manager – First provincial tour – Early songs – Agents – A career boost from Sam Redfern – Nerves – The music hall improves its image – In Dan Leno’s boots –
Gus meets Marie – Richard Thornton – Seats at the Jubilee procession.
Chapter Four Getting praised – Getting married – First published song – Fun with the gun – Gus and Myrtle in panto – Everything written down –
A lucky escape – The marriage ends.
Chapter Five Songs and life converge – A reputation for meanness – Hugh J. Didcott – Albert Chevalier meets the music hall –
Costers, Cockneys and the East End – Gus and The Donah.
Chapter Six Finding love in Liverpool – What does mum think? – Sandow, ‘King of all Strongmen’ – Wot Cher! Albert – Gus and Edith on tour –
Alec Hurley – The Dials.
Chapter Seven A shooting challenge – As husband and wife – Katie Lawrence – There ain’t a coster like it to be found – ‘Wery’ odd –
The move to music hall land – A big hit.
Chapter Eight Suicide mania – Eros unveiled – A bicycle made for two – The ‘T’ dog – The Famous Coster Comedian –The Donah dispute –
Big earnings – A galloping success – The cabbies strike.
Chapter Nine Elen vs. Chevalier – Pearly Kings and Queens – Marie Lloyd and Gus – Innuendo – Mimics – Gus in South Africa. (or not?)
Chapter Ten Music hall syndicates – Quick changes – The Pro’s brougham – Nostalgic engagements – Oswald Stoll: A strict employer –
Chapter Eleven Song themes – Charles Godfrey wins a bet – Gus meets Harry Lauder – Prudes on the prowl – Town and country –
Chapter Twelve Pantomime and Variety at Christmas – Copyright and song sheets – Moving up market – Gus the gardener –
Cycling and the lap scoring machine – Shame about Jim!
Chapter Thirteen The prolific George Le Brunn – More of Charles Godfrey – A split with the London Syndicate – Celebrity Culture –
Letters from near and far – Talking machines – Offers of engagements in USA and Australia – Harry Rickards –
Marie Lloyd’s Sunday parties – Moving pictures.
Chapter Fourteen Bizarre entertainment – Dan and Lydia Leno – Death of Gus’s mother – A family rift – A shooting companion –
Moneybags and Misery – A price of fame.
Chapter Fifteen Balham and a new home – A song can have a long life – Gus first records his songs – The Coon and the Cake Walk –
The Boer and The Bore.
Chapter Sixteen The Costermongers’ Sports Day – Syd May, Emily and Ethardo – Harry Lauder first appears in London –
Gus and Dan Leno as ‘extras’ – Mafeking Night – The billiard player and the pear tree – The upper ten –
Music hall fires and accidents – Nephews, the workhouse and the training ship.
Chapter Seventeen Illness and recuperation – Tall stories – Touring reduced – Harry Champion and Belle Elmore – The coronation of Edward VII – The Alhambra, Blackpool – Cars.
Chapter Eighteen Cockney weddings – Hilda Elen – Shooting plays second fiddle to fishing and motoring – The rise and fall of Dan Leno –
Treasure hunting – The London Coliseum.
Chapter Nineteen Moderately drunk – Winning and losing in court – Fishing ideas – The influence of George Foster – A fire at home –
Gus and Edith’s Christmas gifts for children – A new song with new presentation methods – Marie Lloyd weds Alec Hurley.
Chapter Twenty The music hall strike – Gus becomes a manager.
Chapter Twenty-One The American tour.
Chapter Twenty-Two Gus and Harry Lauder – Stories of penny pinching – Edgar Bateman, Gus Elen and a tortoise – The Crystal Palace –
Chapter Twenty-Three The coronation of George V and Eel Pie Island – The landlord and his perks –
The Great Lafayette and the National Anthem – Barking and Wapping – The Royal Command Performance 1912 –
George Chirgwin and the Pilchard Inn – Sam Redfern’s investments – A juggler’s offer – A factual fishing story –
Marie Lloyd and Bernard Dillon – Gus’s decision to retire.
Chapter Twenty-Four In and out of retirement – Sea fishing – A successful comeback, 1931 – Back to the recording studio –
Back to the film studio – Gus on the radio – The Royal Variety Performance, 1935 – The final curtain.
Gus Elen Discography
Index of Gus Elen’s songs
Index of Songwriters and Composers
Index of Music Halls, Theatres and Pubs etc.
Index of Personalities
The Gus Elen Archive CD