Dorothy Squires - Biography

Dorothy made her recording debut in 1936 with When The Poppies Bloom Again, recorded on 6th December of that year.  The following August she recorded three more songs with Reidís Accordion Band Ė Kiss Me Goodnight, Sweet Heartache and Moon At Sea.  Other recordings that Dorothy made with Reid during 1937 and 1938 included Moonlight On The Waterfall, Whistling Gypsy Waltz, Are You Sincere? and Little Drummer Boy.  Dorothy also sang with Reid and his orchestra in the film Saturday Night Revue.

However it was in the mid-1940s that the Reid/Squires partnership finally began to reap rich rewards.  With the advent of World War II the Reid/Squires musical partnership had been brought to a temporary halt, and there were no new recordings from the team between the summer of 1938 and the spring of 1945.  The first of many hits that Billy Reid composed for Dorothy was Coming Home, recorded on 1st May 1945, which was released just before VE Day.  The song captured the sentiments of many of the homesick and shell-shocked soldiers who were returning home to their families, and Coming Home quickly became popular both on the radio and on record.

Among the other hit recordings that Dorothy and Billy Reid also introduced were The Gypsy (recorded in July 1945), followed by Iíll Close My Eyes (also in 1945), A Tree In The Meadow and Motherís Day (both 1948).  Their many other hits included Itís A Pity To Say Goodnight, In All The World, Safe In My Arms, Danger Ahead, Yes! Iíll Be Here and Coming Home.  Dorothy and Billy Reid topped variety bills as ďThe Composer And The VoiceĒ.  Their working partnership also developed into a passionate if somewhat volatile personal relationship Ė Reid was some 12 years older than Dorothy, and a married man.  They however lived together between 1939 and 1951.

Billy Reid had already captured the imagination of the nationís popular music fans before the Second World War with songs like When The Rose Of Tralee Met Danny Boy, but there can be no doubting that his partnership with Dorothy Squires propelled their respective careers to new heights.  Dorothy herself went on to have success in the United States, appearing regularly in cabaret although she was deprived of big record sales via the fact that many of the top American artists of the era, including Al Jolson, The Ink Spots, Margaret Whiting, Dinah Shore and Eddie Fisher covered Billy Reidís great songs.

By the end of the 40s Dorothy Squires was one of the most popular performers in Britain.  She became the resident star of BBC Radioís Variety Bandbox, which regularly attracted millions of listeners, and she made her London Palladium debut in 1946.  Dorothy and Billy Reid also regularly broadcast in such popular BBC radio series as Music Hall and Variety Fanfare.  Dorothy also had solo bookings on Henry Hallís Guest Night radio show, and many other popular series of the day, including Melody Lane, Band Parade and All Star Bill.  With her blonde hair and glamorous looks, the petit Dorothy packed theatres throughout the country while her many recordings were bought by a huge army of fans.

 

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