Jimmy Tarbuck OBE, 1940 – Present
A national institution, Jimmy Tarbuck is one of Britain’s best loved comedians and one the few all time greats still with us.
Famous for hosting many a variety show such as Live from Her Majesty’s, Jimmy Tarbuck is still performing today having come up through the ranks with the Beatles and the 1960’s Mersey trend.
Born in Liverpool 6th February 1940, the son of a Bookmaker, he went to school with John Lennon and left aged 15.
After leaving school his first job was as a garage mechanic, but he was sacked from this and many subsequent jobs for fooling around. Aged 18, he joined a touring rock ‘n’ roll show which set him firmly on the showbusiness ladder of success.
He is married to wife Pauline and has an equally famous daughter LizaTarbuck.
After tasting show business as part of a band Jimmy would find himself working at Butlins as a Redcoat. It was here aged just 22 that the late Val Parnell spotted him.
Making his TV debut on Comedy Bandbox, He would make several guest appearances on Sunday Night at the London Palladium for Val Parnell before becoming the resident compere in September 1965. He was soon headlining the top variety shows throughout the country as well as making his London cabaret debut at The Talk of the Town. In addition to this there was TV shows The Jimmy Tarbuck Show and It’s Tarbuck both for ATV, and Tarbuck’s Luck for the BBC.
Continuing to work into the 70’s he became a regular fixture on TV when in 1975 he hosted the hugely popular Winner Takes All for ITV. This ran until 1986, not resting on his laurels he hosted another game show Tarbys Frame Game, these were both for Yorkshire Television.
During the 1980’s stil a popular face on television Tarbuck signed a five year deal with London Weekend Television. This saw him present Live from The Palladium, Live From The Piccadilly and Live From Her Majesty’s. These were followed by a chat show Tarby and Friends and Tarby After Ten.
Moving away from regular TV in the 90’s (he’d been almost a permanent fixture on TV screens for over twenty years by now) Jimmy Tarbuck returned to his live shows. There was also pantomime appearances and summer seasons, alongside many TV appearances, the most famous of which was the ratings hit An Audience With Jimmy Tarbuck. Made by London Weekend Television it’s success lead to another late night talk show Tarby After Ten, that aired in 1998. In between he hosted a game show for the BBC entitled Full Swing based on his favourite pass time of Golf.
Today Jimmy Tarbuck still tours, does a great deal of charity work and after dinner speaking.
We wish Jimmy Tarbuck well and hope for a successful and speedy recovery from his battle against prostate cancer.