Singer who, in a duo with his wife Pearl Carr, represented the UK in the 1959 Eurovision song contest with Sing, Little Birdie
Teddy Johnson was born in Surbiton and worked in an office after leaving school at 14. Aged 18, he landed his first professional booking, as a drummer and assistant steward on the P&O liner SS Corfu. “We played a wide variety of music,” he recalled. “Everything from popular songs and dance music of the day to classical pieces and light opera.” Johnson made his first broadcast in 1939, for Radio Ceylon, which provoked a fellow musician to tell him: “You are a very good singer but a bloody awful drummer”.
After the war he joined the resident band at the Locarno dance hall in Streatham, south London, and broadcast as a singer with the bandleader Jack Payne. Johnson worked with several more dance bands before he was hired in 1948 as chief announcer for the English language programmes of Radio Luxembourg.