When the album We’ll Meet Again: The Very Best of Vera Lynn topped the British album charts on 13th September, 2009, it gave its singer the distinction of being the oldest living artist, at 92, to achieve a #1 chart placing. With 3 of her singles present in the first ever British chart back in 1952, the album also made Vera the only artist with a chart span in the UK from inception to the modern day.
Vera Lynn’s career began long before the existence of record charts in the heady days of the dance band era, when as a young singer she lent her distinctive voice to a succession of bands. Starting with Howard Baker’s outfit, she soon moved on to her first ever radio broadcast in 1935 with the renowned Joe Loss Orchestra, then to a stint with Charlie Kunz’ Casani Club Orchestra before finally ending up with Britain’s premier dance band of the ‘30s, Bert Ambrose & His Orchestra.
With the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, Vera became a solo attraction, ultimately dubbed The Sweetheart of the Forces for her patriotic and heart-warming recordings and radio broadcasts which brought light to both the servicemen abroad and their loved ones left at home. Wartime classics such as We’ll Meet Again and The White Cliffs of Dover are fondly remembered to this day, as is the Kassner-owned treasure, Goodnight Children Everywhere GOODNIGHT CHILDREN EVERYWHERE by GABY ROGERS,HARRY PHILLIPS|.
Among the many other songs associated with her are a variety of Kassner group copyrights, including our first hit How Lucky You Are HOW LUCKY YOU ARE by EDDIE CASSEN,DESMOND O'CONNOR| penned by founder Edward Kassner, the lovely Irish-themed Doonaree DOONAREE by EILISH BOLAND| and the stirring ballad My Son My Son MY SON MY SON by EDDIE CALVERT,BOB HOWARD,GORDON REES|, which reached #1 on the British singles charts in October 1954.