A feast for all his many fans and admirers, this is the great Humphrey Lyttelton’s last book, a sparkling autobiographical kaleidoscope of memories, anecdotes, and entertaining stories from his colorful life, from his childhood as the son of a famous Eton Housemaster, through to his role as the irrepressible chairman of I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue.
A Renaissance man—musician, writer, cartoonist, calligrapher, and broadcaster—Humph was descended from a long line of land-owning, political, literary, clerical, scholastic, and literary forebears. One of his more notorious relatives was executed for his part in the Gun Powder Plot! Last Chorus draws on some of Humph’s long-lost autobiographical writings, as well a wealth of other material, including his never-before-seen private diaries, plus cartoons. Whether sneaking off when a child to buy his first trumpet, or wading ashore in Italy during World War II with a rifle in one hand and a trumpet in the other, or playing alongside such jazz greats as Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington, Humph was very much his own man, and he comes vividly to life in this engaging and witty self-portrait. Every Monday night from 1967 until 2008, Humphrey Lyttelton wrote and presented BBC’s The Best of Jazz, and he was, famously, chairman of the anarchic, award-winning radio program I’m Sorry, I Haven’t a Clue. He wrote nine books, composed more than 200 tunes, and has honorary doctorates at the universities of Warwick, Loughborough, Durham, Keele, Hertford, and de Montfort.