Why did I get into this one? Because the music sheet loooked so deliciously cheap and colurful, I guess... also, I didn't have the faintest who the people involved were.
The point of the thing was that George Sims and Henry Pettit's Adelphi drama Harbour Lights was from December 1885, a decided hit at the Adelphi Theatre. This ditty, of course, had nothing to do with the drama: it was merely cashing in on the buzz-word title, ('suggested by') much as a third-rate so-called 'tribute' band cashes in on the name and reputation of its 'original'. Lord knows if Ms Kate Royle's music had any quality, or the lyric penned by her husband, Joseph Sidney Long any value, but it didn't really matter what was behind illustrated covers like these ...
So who were Kate Royle and J T Long, I wondered.
Well, Kate [Emily] Royle was of good music-hall pedigree. 'A charming serio and dancer' herself, she was one of the daughters of the former Mary Ann Dunn, known on the music-halls of Britain as Mrs F R Phillips (b 1830; d 10 December 1899). Father was Frederick Powis Royle, a sometime looking-glass manufacturer who converted into a 'professor of music'.
Kate, however, apparently saw herself rather as a composer/songwriter and went to it with a will. In 1882 she was supplying material to Newham and Latimar, for Nellie Wilson and, after her liaison with Long, they supplied William Ward and Nellie Eveley, Jessie Acton ('What's Next', 'Hey Diddle Diddle'), Julia Rosenburg (another occasional piece 'The Royal Jubilee'), Miss Mainstone, the rather more consequent Hetty Chapman
Miss Raine Hampden, Cerise and Cora Caselli, Kate Toole (once of the D'Oyly Carte) ... she teamed with Fred Bowyer on a couple of numbers for G H MacDermott
She also supplied Harry Randall, James Fawn ('She trotted me off to church') and doubtless others with tunes for similar pieces.