Sir Harry Lauder

1870-1950

ENTERTAINER

Sir Harry Lauder, the popular singer and entertainer, who won international renown, was born at Number 4 Bridge Street, Portobello.

As a boy Lauder worked in a flax-spinning mill in Arbroath, where he attended school, and for a time he was a miner. It was in Arbroath that he first appeared on stage. He had a natural singing voice and a talent for composing simple and tuneful songs.
His stage persona depended heavily on the kilt, a curly walking-stick, and much talk of bawbees and allusions to tight-fistedness, and Lauder's critics complained that he caricatured the Scot. Be that as it may, Lauder was just as popular in his own country as he was in England and innumerable countries overseas.
Songs like Roaming in the Gloaming and Keep Right On to the End of the Road retain their magic and have become part of Scotland's folk music. He was knighted in 1919, and in 1927 received the Freedom of Edinburgh.
A few years ago, when the new Portobello Bypass was inaugurated, it was named Sir Harry Lauder Road.

Famous Edinburgh Folk index page
Edinburgh Folk index page
Edinburgh Places index page