August 2011

Last month was absolutely manic and I nearly suffered a meltdown or maybe I did suffer one, I’ve always been slightly wacky so it’s hard to tell. I can at last finally cross off the paperback and special edition updates off my list, they have both gone to bed now and I really cannot express into words how relieved I was to see the back of those projects. Proof reading with Titan has been an experience or more an ordeal that I really do not want to ever repeat. Everything had finally gone to bed when I received a wonderful email from Robert McCloud

Hi Michele.

Just to let you know I finished reading the beautiful and extraordinary book The Singers Singer - The Life and Music of Matt Monro today. It is hard to find the words to express my feelings after reading about the life and sad demise of my favourite singer the masterful and majestic Matt Monro. The story took me two to three months to complete, but by heck it was truly worth it. Matt’s ending came very quickly, which is hard to take, especially for the man himself, a man who was full of humility and kindness. But also I felt the complete heartache his ever faithful wife Mickie was going through at this terrible time, and also for yourself Michele, and Matt junior and Mitch too.

I have posted 54 crying emoticons with this email, to signify Matt’s age at the time of his death. But they also signify to me how hard it was to read the final chapter in the book (Cry Me a River), as I found it so hard to keep my eyes dry when reading everyone’s heartbreaking comments at the beginning and during that emotional chapter - all I kept thinking about after reading that chapter was poor Matt, poor poor Matt and the helplessness of his family felt.

Love from Robert McCloud, a heartbroken fan of the truly awesome singer and entertainer Mr Matt Monro, a man I have come to know and love while reading the best 632 pages I have ever read in my life.
God Bless Mr and Mrs Matt Monro, they were the very best.

And in a follow up email from Robert I received this dreaded message.

Can I just mention a couple of things that seemed a bit odd in the book? On page 599 when discussing Matt meeting HRH Princess Ann twice on that page, the photo is actually of Princess Alexandra meeting Matt and Bobby Crush.

You probably know this already Michele, but in your "forward" at the beginning of the book it says Matt passed away at 3.20 pm, but at the end of the book it says 3.45 pm.

Thanks once again for such a magical book Michele. I will miss reading about Matt, as I truly adored the book.

I had a mild, well not so mild screaming fit, I couldn’t believe that those mistakes had got through the final proofing or indeed that no one had mentioned it in the last 18 months. Not only were the mistakes there but proofing should take into account consistency and in the Forward the time was listed as a twelve hour clock and at the end of the book the twenty-four hour clock – God was I mad. Titan were then treated to a very rare event, a humble Michele begging for the book to be rescued back from the printers, because of course the book had gone to print two days earlier. I am so thankful that I managed to claw it back from the jaws of the press and very thankful to Robert for pointing those gargantuan errors out. I cannot even recall how many times the book has had a proof since publication and thankfully the initial blips were rectified over the five reprints the book has had. Having got through all of that I wanted to ensure the paperback went to print near perfect and I think I would have had nightmares for evermore had I not been able to recall the document. Thank you Robert for your eagle eye.

One other tidbit is that Titan are finally going to release the manuscript as an EBook and I know that is something a lot of you have asked for. It has taken a while to get the go-ahead but it is nice to know that we are catching up with modern technology.

Launa & Ken

Lana Doughty with her brother Ken proudly sporting his auction tie win

Since the release of the special edition last year Special Reserve, Richard and I have continued with our research and have unearthed quite a lot of new content. The book is being reprinted with an additional 16 pages of content and I am hoping to have the edition available by the end of the month but there is a condition of sale in that you have to already purchased Special Reserve. The price will be £15.00 and it will be available at Fans Reunited.


The Bookazine (The Man Behind the Voice) went to bed on 25th July and all being equal will be published on Tuesday 30th August. Apparently it is possible that it will also be available at other outlets as well as WH Smith but I am waiting to hear an update from EMI. There has also been talk about it being published in the Philippines, which would be marvellous. The set will include a 64-page magazine with more than 60 photographs, the majority of which were not included in the book, a 20 track CD, including two tracks that have never been released and four that have only appeared on compact disc once before. We are also including the original 7” vinyl of Portrait of My Love. The replica is perfect even down to the original catalogue number, a really special keepsake.

I start working on The One Show this month with the 16th and 25 August allocated for filming and all being equal this will be shown very close to the Launch Party date. I’m really looking forward to this, as it is a wonderful opportunity to keep dad’s name current.

As I write these notes I am just about to leave for Vintage at Southbank (29/30/31 July. You might remember that I did this music festival at Glorious Goodwood last year but this year the venue has been changed to London. The organisers have taken over the Festival Hall for all the entertainment and all the traders are set up around that building. They are expecting about 250,000 people this year so I am just keeping everything crossed that the weather is kinder than last time. Matt Jnr is also singing at the event on Saturday 30 July so I am hoping that I have time to pop across and watch him.


The final preparations are being looked at for the Launch Party on Wednesday 14 September, which is being hosted by Titan Publishing and EMI. The evening is to celebrate the legacy that dad let behind and is to tie in with a double release, the first being the newly packaged EMI set The Singer’s Singer, which will come out on Monday 12th September and the second offering is the paperback, which will come out on Friday 23rd September. Both of these items will be available at the event so if you would like a signed item I would advise that you don’t pre-order either product. Unfortunately the American release of the paperback will not be out until Tuesday 28th February 2012 but that is mainly to do with the fact that I will be over there shortly after and will be able to promote it properly.

The guest list is shaping up nicely and I am delighted to have now had acceptances from Esther Rantzen, Buddy Greco, David Hamilton, Sir George Martin, Gerard Kenny, Graeme Harper, June Marlow, Mike Winters, Paul Gambaccini, Pete Conway, Rosemary Squires, Shane Rimmer, Tony Christie, Val Doonican, Vince Hill and Virginia McKenna. I can also add my brother’s name to that list for all of you that have asked. I am yet to hear from a few people so that list might well be extended by next month’s updates.

George Martin Shane Rimmer
Sir George Martin Virginia McKenna Shane Rimmer
Gerard Kenny Pete Conway
Gerrard Kenny Pete Conway Mike WInters


Richard has just finished remastering ‘The Singer’s Singer’ CD set, which became a tougher job than first anticipated.  Originally released in 2001, only 3000 were made available and the item has long since been deleted from the catalogue list. This time round only the discs will be offered in a standard slipcase but at a much more competitive price. There were also a couple of errors in the original so it has been nice to be able to rectify these and the difference in sound is amazing.

Singer's Singer

Of course before the Launch itself, Richard and I are hosting Fans Reunited, the first in four years, which I am really looking forward to. Richard has taken a lot of trouble in putting together some very special audio and visual clips this time and I don’t think anyone will be disappointed. Unfortunately because the places were very limited I’ve had to turn several people away but on the other hand it is nice that it will be intimate and that I will have a chance to say hello to everyone. One thing that I need to stress is that security will be extremely tight at EMI so if your name is not on the guest list there will be no way to gain entry. With this in mind please let me know if you change the name of your guest. I don’t want any tears on the night.

Sadly a few weeks ago we lost one of our great British composers so our Spotlight feature this month looks at the impact that Cyril Ornadel made on the music world as well as an extra feature on one of our very own members – Ian Billingham.

I am still making an appearance every Wednesday on Siren 107.8FM’s ‘Midweek Drive’. The weekly slot allows me to select some of the lesser-known tracks of dad and that is wonderful as it gives me a chance to play a broader range. Siren have actually asked me to pre-record shows for the dates I am not here next year although we are hoping to do a few live phone-ins from Australia and America so that should be both fun and challenging.

 ‘Friends of Matt Monro’ is our official Fan Club and is run by Geraldine Vine. If you would like to join then contact Geraldine on or access our website and go through to the ‘News’ page. By scrolling down the page you will find the heading ‘Friends of Matt Monro’ and print off an application form.

Membership includes a Welcome Pack and four issues of our exclusive newsletter. Where possible we give you advanced access to concert tickets and pre-sales as well as the opportunity of purchasing tickets for concerts, personal appearances and special gatherings. The Newsletter also features discounts on exclusive merchandise and Geraldine runs several competitions with the chance to win tickets and merchandise. Membership is £15.00 single/£18.00 joint membership for fans in England or £18.00 single/£21.00 joint membership for overseas fans.

In an effort to stay abreast with technology last year saw the appearance of my very own Facebook page - and now EMI have followed suit with a dedicated Matt Monro Facebook page. It would be wonderful if you could pop in and become a fan, the more the merrier - It will hopefully mean that we can reach even more people, some who might not know about the website.

Please don’t forget to let me know if you have anything related to dad, whether a story, a photo or an old radio show. Or maybe you have some old VHS formats laying in the attic that might have a television show on it. We can always have it transferred for you at our costs. As Richard and I unearth these rarities we are constantly told “but we thought you must have it”. Please don’t be shy; you might have something we are looking for. I repeat this message every month just in case it jogs someone’s memory and in fact a few weeks ago Henry Puccinelli remembered a radio dad did in San Francisco that he had in his attic so I am thrilled to report that it is winging its way over to London as we speak.

I am also thrilled to announce that I am taking several months off next year. On 9th January 2012 I am hitching a ride aboard P&O Arcadia and making my way to Australia. I have family there that I haven’t seen in 40 years and I thought it time to drop in for tea. Mum and dad visited the country fifteen times and always raved about it so I decided that if I don’t get going now I might never get across the pond. I certainly couldn’t fly; I’d die en-route of claustrophobia or the like. I will be spending about five weeks in the country travelling to Sydney, Perth, Brisbane and of course The Great Barrier Reef and I am hoping to meet up with some of you along the way. My route back is slightly different and the 15 April will see me board the Sea Princess in Sydney and go across to San Francisco. I will then meet Marion Spence (Johnnie Spence’s wife) in Las Vegas before heading to her home in Los Angeles. There are dozens of port stops along route so again I am hoping for the chance to meet up with lots of you from that side of the world, as I won’t fly back to London until June. I am delighted to have had an invitation for a drink with Henry Puccinelli who lives in San Francisco so that should be a lot of fun. With Max firmly ensconced in University, this trip will take my mind off what will be a very hard parting of the ways. I have had either my mum or Max at my side for the last 25 years so it will be a difficult transition, so I thought an adventure was called for.

Business will carry on as usual because in this day and age everything can be done by either telephone or email. I am delighted to announce that next year’s release will be The Rarer Monro but I have scheduled it for September so that will give me plenty of time to work on it and do the relevant publicity for the project once I get back.

My itinerary for 2012 is as follows:

Monday 9th January:

Embark Southampton, England

Tuesday 10th January:

At Sea

Wednesday 11th January:

At Sea

Thursday 12th January:

At Sea 

Friday 13th January:

Barcelona, Spain - Full Day

Saturday 14th January:

At Sea

Sunday 15th January:

At Sea

Monday 16th January:

Athens (Piraeus), Greece - Full Day

Tuesday 17th January:

At Sea 

Wednesday 18th January:

Port Said, Egypt - Full Day & Evening

Thursday 19th January:                 

Suez Canal Daytime Transit

Friday 20th January                

Aqaba, Jordan - Full Day

Saturday 21st January:           

Luxor/Karnak, Egypt - Full Day & Evening

Sunday 22nd January:

At Sea

Monday 23rd January:

At Sea

Tuesday 24th January:

At Sea

Wednesday 25th January:

At Sea             

Thursday 26th January:

At Sea

Friday 27th January:

  Dubai, United Arab Emirates - Full Day

Saturday 28th January:

At Sea

Sunday 29th January:

At Sea

Monday 30th January:

Mumbai (formerly Bombay), India - Full Day

Tuesday 31st January:

At Sea

Wednesday 1st February:       

Cochin, India - Full Day

Thursday 2nd February:             

Colombo - Full Day & Evening

Friday 3rd February:

At Sea

Saturday 4th February:

At Sea

Sunday 5th February:                 

Phuket, Thailand - Full Day

Monday 6th February:

At Sea

Tuesday 7th February:

Singapore - Full Day   

Wednesday 8th February:

At Sea

Thursday 9th February:      

Sihanoukville, Cambodia - Full Day

Friday 10th February:

Laem Chabang - Full Day

Saturday 11th February:

At Sea

Sunday 12th February:       

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam- Full Day

Monday 13th February:

At Sea

Tuesday 14th February:               

Ha Long Bay - Full Day

Wednesday 15th February:

At Sea

Thursday 16th February:

Hong Kong, China - Full Day & Evening

Friday 17th February:             

Hong Kong, China- Early Morning      

Saturday 18th February:

At Sea

Sunday 19th February:            

Shanghai, China - Full Day

Monday 20th February:

At Sea

Tuesday 21st February:     

Beijing, China- Full Day & Evening

Wednesday 22nd February:

At Sea

Thursday 23rd February:               

Nagasaki, Japan - Afternoon & Evening

Friday 24th February:

At Sea

Saturday 25th February:               

Osaka, Japan - Full Day

Sunday 26th February:

At Sea

Monday 27th February:

At Sea

Tuesday 28th February:

At Sea

Wednesday 29th February:

At Sea

Thursday 1st March:

At Sea

Friday 2nd March:

Rabaul  - Full Day

Saturday 3rd March:

At Sea

Sunday 4th March:

At Sea

Monday 5th March:         

Cairns, Yorkey's Knob - Full Day

Tuesday 6th March:

At Sea

Wednesday 7th March  

Brisbane, Australia - Full Day

Thursday 8th March:

At Sea 

Friday 9th March:     

Sydney, Australia - Full Day & Evening

Saturday 10th March:               

Sydney, Australia - Early Morning

Sunday 11th March:               

Melbourne, Australia – Disembark

Sunday 11th March - Wednesday 11th April – Australia

Thursday 12th April

Fly Melbourne to Sydney

Friday 13th April:


Saturday 14th April:


Sunday 15th April:

Sydney – Embark

Monday 16th April:

At Sea

Tuesday 17th April:

At Sea

Wednesday 18th April:

Fiordland National Park New Zealand

Thursday 19th April:

Dunedin (Port Chalmers), New Zealand

Friday 20th April:

Christchurch, New Zealand

Saturday 21st April:

At Sea

Sunday 22nd April:

Auckland, New Zealand

Monday 23rd April:

At Sea

Tuesday 24th April:

At Sea

Wednesday 25th April:

At Sea

Wednesday 25th April:

Suva, Fiji

Wednesday 25th April:

Cross International Dateline

Thursday 26th April:

Pago Pago, American Samoa

Friday 27th April:

At Sea

Saturday 28th April:

At Sea

Sunday 29th April:

Bora Bora, French Polynesia

Monday 30th April:

Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia

Tuesday 1st May:

Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia

Wednesday 2nd May:

At Sea

Thursday 3rd May:

At Sea

Friday 4th May:

At Sea

Saturday 5th May:

At Sea

Sunday 6th May:

At Sea

Monday 7th May:

Honolulu, Hawaii, USA

Tuesday 8th May:

Maui (Lahaina), USA

Wednesday 9th May:

At Sea

Thursday 10th May:

At Sea

Friday 11th May:

At Sea

Saturday 12th May:

At Sea

Sunday 13th May:

Disembark San Francisco



Monday 14th May:

San Francisco

Tuesday 15th May:

San Francisco

Wednesday 16th May:

Flight to Las Vegas

Thursday 17th May:

Las Vegas

Friday 18th May:

Las Vegas

Saturday 19th May

Las Vegas (Marion Flies Out)

Sunday 20th May:

Las Vegas

Monday 21st May:

Flight to Los Angeles

Monday 21st May – Tuesday 19th June – Los Angeles

Wednesday 20th June:                      Air New Zealand to London
Thursday 21st June:                           Land London Heathrow

That is the itinerary as it stands today but will be subject to change as I detail certain days in Australia and the USA.

Check out the ‘Rough Guide to’, which is available towards the bottom of the Homepage. A few of you have mentioned that you don’t know how to access certain areas of the site or in fact are unaware of new areas, this guide will explain how easy this website is to get around, once you know how.

There is also another information box “How to Use the Forum’. I know a lot of people have been tempted to join in on some of our conversations but are slightly nervous of doing so. For that reason I have printed step-by-step instructions of how to access it. It really does only take a few minutes.

Until September here’s wishing you a wonderful 2011 and may your year be filled with music.

Michele Monro

Past News - July 2011


Press Play to start slideshow.

Galley Instructions.

Hover your mouse pointer over the control panel in the bottom left hand corner of the above slide show. This will bring up the controls, the title of the photograph and the option to view all thumbnails

Slideshow Part 2


  - Press this link to see the Amazon Listing for The Singers Singer by Michele Monro


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