The Phono Project

Exploring the history of the groove

“June brought the roses” by JOhn francis mccormack

John Francis McCormack was born in Athlone, County Westmeath, Ireland on June 14, 1884. Growing up he would sing in the Old St. Peter’s Church choir and the St. Mary’s Pro Cathedral choirs. In 1906 he made his debut at the Teatro Chiabrera and in 1907 McCormack became Covent Garden’s youngest principal tenor – and was discovered by Irish Composer, Vincent O’brien. The quality of his voice, and charisma, guaranteed that he would soon be known as the greatest lyric tenor of all time. He was regularly condemned in his day for his lowbrow repertory and his willingness to entertain popular audiences with frivolous ditties and sentimental ballads. His best known and most successful recordings were for the Victor Talking Machine Company during the early 1900s. In 1917 McCormack became a citizen of the United States of America, and on September 16, 1945 he passed away due to a number of illnesses.

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