A Century Of Ballads 1810-1910, Their Composers & Singers

With Some Introductory Chapters On Old Ballads And Ballad Makers - online book.

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6o               A CENTURY OF BALLADS
Anne Catley, the daughter of a coachman, her mother being a washerwoman, made her first appearance in public as a singer at the early age of ten. In later years she became a great favourite at Marylebone Gardens. She appears to have possessed a charming voice and to have been a great beauty, but was noted for being a trifle eccentric in her manner.
Miss Brent, afterwards Mrs. Pinto, was another noted singer of the period, and with her must be mentioned Miss Eliza Farren (afterwards the Countess of Derby) and Mrs. Billington, whose mother had been a favourite singer at Vauxhall. Mrs. Billington had a long career, her first appearance in public as a singer being made at the age of fourteen. She died in 1818.
A singer with a very sweet voice, who was more of an amateur than a professional, was Mrs. Jordan, whose real name was Dorothy Bland. She is supposed to have been the composer of "The Blue Bells of Scotland," a song which she sang a great deal in public.
Miss Stephens, who afterwards became the Countess of Essex, may be mentioned here, though she belongs by right to the following century, her first appearance in public being in 1813. She was the creator of " Auld Robin Gray," which attained an immense popularity from her constant singing of it.
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