Born In: Seaforth, Lancashire, England
Kenny Everett was a British comedian, radio disc jockey and television presenter who became known for his sharp humour, irreverent presentation style and technical mastery of the medium. He began his career on pirate radio ‘Radio London’ where his show, Kenny & Cash Show, (along with Dave Cash) brought him a lot of popularity. He later joined BBC Radio 1 where he developed his trademark comedy characters that were later seen on his television shows, The Kenny Everett Video Show (The Kenny Everett Video Cassette in its final fourth series) and The Kenny Everett Television Show. Some of the characters that became popular included Captain Kremmen, Sid Snot and Marcel Wave. He worked for Radio Luxembourg, Capitol Radio, BBC Radio 2 and Capital Gold as well. Though his wit and humour made him popular, it also became the reason for his dismissal from his job on more than one occasion. A year before his death, he was awarded the Sony Radio Gold Award for his achievements in radio. After his death, several movies and documentaries were made about him. He has been an inspiration for radio and television personalities like Chris Moyles and Chris Tarrant.
Also Known As: Maurice James Christopher Cole
Died At Age: 50
Spouse/Ex-: Lee Everett Alkin (m. 1966–1984)
father: Tom Cole
mother: Lily Cole
siblings: Cate Cole
Born Country: England
place of death: London, England
Grouping of People: Homosexuality
Cause of Death: AIDS
education: Sacred Heart Catholic College
Kenny Everest was born on 25th December 1944 in Seaforth, Lancashire, England as Maurice James Christopher Cole and grew up in Liverpool suburbs. His family included his parents Tom (a tugboat captain) and Lily Cole and a sister, Cate Cole.
For his education, he went to St. Edmund’s Primary School, Liverpool and later St. Bede's Secondary Modern School, Surrey. He then joined a junior seminary school at Stillington where he was a choirboy.
Initially, he picked up a job in a bakery and then joined the advertising department of a shipping publication – The Journal of Commerce and Shipping Telegraph.
In 1962, turning down a presenter job at the BBC radio station BBC Light Programme, he joined pirate station, Radio London, as a DJ. At this point of time, he changed his name to Kenny Everett.
Here, along with Dave Cash, he presented Kenny & Cash Show (1964–65) which gained a lot of popularity. He himself became quite famous. However, his outspoken remarks cost him his job at Radio London.
Six months later, in 1966, he got a fresh start at Radio Luxembourg where he had his own show – Kenny Everett Audio Show. His work here was noticed by Johnny Beerling, a BBC producer.
He then briefly worked on BBC Light Programme’s Where It’s At before joining BBC’s newly launched Radio 1 in September 1967.
At Radio 1, the all new music station, he hosted various shows like Midday Spin (1967) and Everett is Here (1968–1970). He came up with his own live and pre-recorded comedy characters, sound effects and multi-tracked jingles and trailers. However, his on-air remark about the transport minister’s wife, suggesting she had bribed her driving test examiner, yet again got him dismissed from his job.
Meanwhile, his popularity also started his screen career where he first appeared as himself in British music comedy film, Dateline Diamonds, in 1965. In 1968-1969, he worked as a co-host in ITV Granada’s comic sketch television series Nice Time.
This was followed by three television programmes with London Weekend Television in 1970. The shows – The Kenny Everett Explosion, Making Whoopee and Ev – did not perform well though.
In 1972, he worked in the late night BBC comedy television show Up Sunday.
Few years after being dismissed, he was back working with BBC Radio 1 in 1973. His weekly show, this time was pre-recorded (in his home studio) and gave BBC a chance to censor before airing it. He continued his experiment with sound effect especially with character voices.
In late 1973, he quit Radio 1 to join one of Britain’s first commercial entertainment radio station Capital Radio. Here he presented the weekend show, The Breakfast Show which was again recorded.
Beginning January 1974, Kenny Everett was joined by former colleague Dave Cash on The Breakfast Show. The two continued together till 1975 and created many comedy characters.
In 1975, he moved to Saturday and Sunday lunchtimes shows to reduce his work pressure. In 1976, he presented a Saturday lunch-time show for Radio Victory. The show was again pre-recorded.
His television career progressed simultaneously. He lent his voice for a public information films animated series in 1973 and became an announcer ITV’s family gameshow, Celebrity Squares, between 1975 and 1979.
The year 1977 saw him and Mike Vickers coming together for a single – Captain Kremmen –inspired by Everett’s science fiction hero of the same name.
In 1978, he began appearing in The Kenny Everett Video Show (1978–80) which became The Kenny Everett Video Cassette for its final fourth series (1981). The show made by Thames television and aired on ITV combined pop music and comic sketch.
The show presented a variety of characters created by Everett like rocker Sid Snot, a lustful Frenchman Marcel Wave and Lord Thames, supposedly the owner of Thames Television.
The science fiction hero Captain Kremmen, created for his Capital Radio shows, also appeared – first as animation voiced by Everett and later, for the final series, as live action. The show also featured performances from risqué dance troupe Hot Gossip.
The show became famous and even won a BAFTA award for best light entertainment series in 1979.
Disagreements regarding management issues eventually led him to leave Thames television and join BBC for the The Kenny Everett Television Show (1981–88). The show was more or less similar to his earlier show; however, new additional characters were created like orange-haired punk Gizzard Puke, a B-movie starlet Cupid Stunt and an incompetent TV handyman Reg Prescott.
Meanwhile, he once again returned to BBC Radio and began presenting the Kenny Everett Radio Show for Radio 2 in 1981. The show continued till he was sacked in 1984 for making risqué joke about British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
In 1983, he released yet another single – Snot Rap – which was supposedly sung by a couple of his television characters, Sid Snot and Cupid Stunt. A sequel single – Snot Rap – Part II followed up in 1985.
In June 1984, he once again joined Capital London and began presenting their Saturday lunchtime show Kenny Everett Audio Show. He continued with it till 1988.
Between 1988 and 1991, he presented Weekday afternoon shows on Capital Gold followed by Weekday mid-mornings shows 1991–1994 for the same radio station.
During this period, he also hosted two television quiz show – Brainstorm (1988) and Gibberish (1992) – and participated as a team captain in another game show That's Showbusiness (1989-1991).
Kenny Everett married pop singer and celebrity psychic Audrey Middleton (Lady Lee) in 1969; however, they separated in 1979 and later divorced in 1984.
By late 1980s, he made public his homosexuality and worked as a gay rights activist during the last few years of his life.
In April 1995, at the age of 50, he died of an AIDS related illness.
Numerous television series and films have been made about his life including an episode in Thames Television series Heroes of Comedy (1997); ITV1’s tribute show Licence to Laugh; Channel 4’s documentary When Freddie Mercury Met Kenny Everett and a BBC television biopic The Best Possible Taste.
In 2013, Hello, Darlings! The Authorized Biography, authored by James Hogg and Robert Sellers came out.
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