I’ve Become The London Lee Repository

There must not be a lot written about London Lee, because when people search his name, they often end up here. Most notes begin by acknowledging he was drop dead funny. I’ve heard from his friends, relatives, a few folks who despise him (London, trust me, stay clear of your cousin in Boca) and a woman who claims to have known him in Europe.

A while ago, I wrote about London Lee, the iconic young Jewish comic of the mid and late 60s. I’m afraid for those just a few years younger than me, his name means nothing.

London Lee was huge. He was on Sullivan. He was on the Tonight Show. He was a comic on a meteoric rise… and then… you know… stuff happens.

There must not be a lot written about London Lee, because when people search his name, they often end up here. Most notes begin by acknowledging he was drop dead funny. I’ve heard from his friends, relatives, a few folks who despise him (London, trust me, stay clear of your cousin in Boca) and a woman who claims to have known him in Europe.

It’s funny, but I was just thinking about “London Lee”. I did the search and found your site.

London Lee was really the son of a wealthy garment center guy. His real name was Alan Levine and he lived on Central Park South NYC. That was in 1960-1-2.

My boyfriend at the time, who was a hustler and pool sharp (later to be a heroin addict), was staying with London in his studio there and that was how I met Alan/London.

I was impressed when I first saw him on TV and surprised at how really funny he was. I guess it was because it was all true stories and insecurities.

Amazingly, he does seem to have fallen off the face of the earth. Would have been in his mid to late 70’s I wonder if he is still alive…….

Maybe Miami Beach?

Sondra

He’s alive. I believe it’s Broward County, just to the north of Miami Beach. By the way, isn’t it more than a little unnerving to read her boyfriend/heroin reference of 45 years ago!

Today I got this:

Just read about London Lee.

He is performing at the Hillcrest Golf and Country Club in Hollywood, FL on Sunday October 29, 2006.

Thought your friend who e-mailed you might be interested.

Barry

So, obviously he is alive an well. There is quite a “Borscht Belt II” circuit playing for retirees in South Florida. He is in good company.

The real reason I’m posting this is this remarkable photo I got from Harry Watts. How lucky am I that Harry took it in August 1968, kept it safe all these years, digitized it and then sent it to me via email nearly 40 years after the fact?

The scene is the Boardwalk in pre-casino Atlantic City. This photo is looking north and the ocean is off camera to the right. Back then A.C. was a hopping resort town.

Steel Pier was, and is again, located at Virginia and Boardwalk. It was known for it’s diving horse (whether it was actually a free will diving horse is another story) and it’s big name acts.

Appearing along with London Lee was John Fred and his Playboy Band. Their hit, “Judy in Disguise” went to number one in January 1968. Also on the bill, somewhat incongruously, was Don Glasser’s Orchestra, a “smooth as glass” dance band.&#185

The photo is a one of a kind, and I’m deeply grateful to Harry for allowing me to post it.

Take a look at the people and what they’re wearing. Atlantic City was where you went, even on this gray summer day, to get away from the heat, forget about the rest of the world, and have a little fun.

&#185 – Amazingly, Don’s band still performs, though without Don.

Because this page is so often searched and found, it has been reopened for comments.

98 thoughts on “I’ve Become The London Lee Repository”

  1. Wow! Two heartwarming stories, not only in a row, but the same morning. I’m not sure if this is the result of your illness, or your trip to Las vegas, or 24 hours a day for over a week with Helaine, but it’s thumbs up from me . . .

  2. Wow! I have not seen London Lee since the Catskills. He was such a hoot, in those days, when I used to go visit Kim Irwin, during his Summer stints.

    God, I feel old….

  3. I used to see London Lee all of the time. My good friend and neighbor’s father was one of the 2 set guys for the Garry Moore Show, so we went to the tapings every Saturday in NYC for years.

    London Lee was VERY funny and I remember him well.

    I am surprised there isn’t more information about him on the Internet. A true talent and class act.

  4. I believe, as is often the case with people of his generation, London isn’t promoting on the web. However, I get emails all the time from people who have seen him or soon will be seeing him perform (Florida and in the NYC metro area).

    The reviews have been good.

  5. I remember seeing him as an opening act for some English rock group back in the 60’s. He was a scream, I loved him — but the groupies and stoners weren’t paying attention.

    However, he was soooo freakin’ funny, that ultimately he won them over. The whole audience was singing his battle cry:

    London Lee will set you free!

    London Lee will set you free!!

    London Lee will set you free…

    But who is London Lee??

    Well, maybe you had to be there, but this guy was stone cold funny.

  6. He was among so many of his generation who have either passed on, retired or faded into obscurity. Names like Myron Cohen, Jackie Vernon, Jack E. (Fat Jack) Leonard [the original insult comic, before Don Rickles], George Gobel, Jack Carter, Shelly Berman, Milton Berle, Danny Thomas, Jackie Mason, Stanley Myron Handelman, Sandy Baron, Jan Murray, Frank Gorshin, Ron Carey, Buddy Hacket, Mort Sahl, Sam Levinson, Red Buttons, Nipsey Russell, Red Foxx, Flip Wilson, Allan & Rossi, Allan Sherman, Norm Crosby, Stan Freberg, Corbett Monica, Morey Amsterda, Totie Fields, Wayne & Schuster, Nancy Walker, Henny Youngman (the king of one-liners), Rodney Dangerfield, Alan King, Richard Pryor, Jerry Lester, George Carlin, Rich Little, John Byner, Will Jordan, Joe E. Lewis. What a different world it was, both on and off TV. It might as well have been a hundred or a thousand years ago, compared to the current dumbed-down, trashy, sensationalized fare to which we are feted, even if foolish or bored enough to watch.

  7. Good to hear that London is still around. He must have enough stories to get a book deal or appear on some talk shows.I wonder about : London Lee – The Missing Years.

  8. This is a fond personal memory. I attended high school in New York City with London Lee’s niece, Toni. For her sixteenth birthday (1968?), her family threw an extravagant party. I kept my party favor for many years because it was a 14K gold and amethyst locket! Anyway, London dropped by during the party, greeting all of us with, “Hello, Toni’s girlfriends.” Needless to say, all the silly giggling schoolgirls were thrilled:)

  9. I remember on one of the many Dean Martin “Roasts”, Norm Crosby’s opening line; “You do realize that if this building and everyone in it is destroyed tonight, London Lee can write his own ticket.”

  10. I meet London Lee about 15 years ago at the Brigantine Golf Linx in New Jersey. A friend and I were teamed up with him, his son in law and his grandson, who rode along with us. I had know clue who he was, but questioned him when I saw his huge golf bag with his name. He then told us that he was this big comedian and was playing at one of the casinos. He was a supper nice and funny guy, but we really didn’t believe he was this great comic. At some point he noticed that I didn’t have a sand wedge and gave me one from his bag to use for the round. He told me that he got it from Chi Chi Rodregus when he played with him at some celebrity tournament. Once again I really didn’t believe his story, but i used the wedge and it worked out great. He offered to sell me the wedge for $5.00 and I agreed. He inturn handed the $5.00 to the guy who cleans you clubs after the round. I still have and use the wedge and its name is Chi Chi. He invited my friend an I to meet him at the casino and we would hang out. Again didn’t beieve him, so we never meet up with him. Two weeks later I took my wife to the MET in NY City and afterwards we stopped in Little Italy to have some dinner. My wife and I were seated and I look up and see a picture of London Lee from the sixties next to celebs like Sanatra, Deano and so many others. To this day I wished that I would have meet him at the casino and hung out with him for awhile.

    Thanks for the wedge London Lee. I am glad to hear your still up there making people laugh.

    TomS

    1. Hey Tom,

      I worked for London back in the 70’s & 80’s. Yhanks for bring back some wonderful memories. London is an excellent golfer. I recall Big Cat Evans joining us to see London’s act in the Poconos.

      Take care,

      Bobby @ rtbucci@hotmail.com

  11. For your London Lee admirers and inquirers, London Lee (Alan Levine) lists his age as 73. I’ve known Levine/Lee since 1964. He was older than I then, and I suspect he still is. I’m nearly 77. London maintains that he was a pilot in the US Air Force during WWII, which would put him well into his 80’s. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.) That pilot story may be apocryphal as he was always a bit of a whack job and a great prevaricator. Last time I saw him was appearing in a review at Merv Griffin’s resorts in Atlantic City 1990. His complexion was dark gray and he had a wisp of white hair that was barely visible from the audience. He had dropped the “rich kid” act, which I had always felt was inconsistent with his heavy Brooklyn accent, and instead was doing a lot of stock jokes, “the best of everybody.” Needless to say, he killed the Atlantic City crowds, and should do well on the South Florida retirees circuit. Lots of luck, London Lee Levine.

    Jake

    ——————————————————————————–

    You Rock! One month of free movies delivered by mail from blockbuster.com

  12. To the forgotten Irwin,

    You might like to hear than I also knew Kim Irwin, a lovely fellow, when he was house singer at the Downbeat club in Montreal. I dated the secretary to a local agent, who evidently had dated Irwin. (The sec’y, not the agent.)

    I gathred this because all during our lovemaking she kept calling out, “Kim! Kim!”

      1. Hi,
        I am Kim’s only daughter. He passed away 3 years ago. I would love to know if I can find some Catskill films, when he was entertaining. I miss him.

  13. I just told my daughter a London Lee joke, and then decided to google him. Here I am. Here’s the joke:

    “When I was in college, my father said

    he’d send me abroad for my junior year,

    so I waited.”

    Here’s another (I’m paraphrasing here – in fact the whole setup is quite a liberty, but the punchline is his):

    “I always wanted to look cool in the

    neighborhood, so I got myself some of

    those stiletto boots. Once I was singing

    ‘West Side Story,’ pirouetted during the

    chorus and screwed myself right into the

    sidewalk.”

  14. I always wondered what happened to London Lee too.

    I remember him as the comedian who appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show the same night as the Beatles.

    I saw him at Rodney Dangerfield’s Club in NYC in 1972.

    It was a great show. The next day I took off for Guadalajara to go to Med School.

    What a send-off for me.

    Al B.

    West Hartford, Ct

  15. London Lee is very much alive and well….he was our special guest performer December 28, 29 and New Year’s Eve 2007 @ Richie Cecere’s Restaurant and Supper Club….Montclair, NJ….www.richiececere.com

  16. LAST TIME I SAW LONDON WAS ON GOLF COURSE LACUNA COUNTRY CLUB IN LAKE WORTH. IT WAS IN 2003. I DECIDED TO GOOGLE HIM TO SEE IF HE WAS STIL IN FLA. I THINK HE MAY BE IN MIAMI. IF HE SEES THIS WOULD LIKE TO HAVE HIM CONTACT ME. HE WAS A FUN GUY. ALSO DROVE HIM TO A GIG IN BOCA WHERE HE ENTERTAINED SENIOR CITIZENS. HE WAS STILL PRETTY GOOD. HE KNOWS HOW TO REACH ME. HOPE YOPU ARE WELL LONDON.

  17. LONDON LEE IS A FANTASTIC COMEDIAN. I ENJOYED HIS SHOWS AT THE CATSKILL HOTELS AND SEVERAL OTHER PLACES.HE’S VERY FUNNY AND A NICE PERSON. I SAW THAT HE JUST HAD A SHOW AT THE NEWPORT BEACHSIDE RESORT IN FLORIDA. (2/21/2009)I’M SO PLEASED TO KNOW THAT HE’S STILL WORKING. IF RICHIE CECERE OR ANYONE SEE’S LONDON, PLEASE TELL HIM HELLO. CARLA FROM THE CATSKILLS.

  18. I first saw London Lee about 30 years ago, loved his style and wonder if he has burned down any buildings lately??

  19. A little London Lee bit.

    ” When I was a kid my father bought me a German Shepard, ( pause ), not a dog, a real German Shepard!

  20. I just heard on a NY (Monticello) radio station that London Lee was going to be at Catch a Rising Star at the Monticello racetrack on Sat. Aug. 22, 2009. I never heard of him so I was googling him when I came across this site and info about him. Interesting!

  21. I haven’t thought about London Lee in years,and ran across the ad for him performing at Monticello Casino. Looked him up on the web and found this site.

    Met London in the early 80’s in Bergen County NJ. His career was already on a down-turn. He was suffering from anxiety and his doctor recommended he learn Transcendental Meditation. My boyfriend at the time offered to drive him to some of his gigs in the Catskills. I tagged along to a few. He was very charming in a neurotic kind of a way. He was very funny performing. Though I remember one gig at an orthodox Jewish Hotel. The audience was offended by some of his risque jokes and most walked out. Most often people loved him.

  22. My husband and I worked in Caesars Pocono Resorts with London Lee. We played in different bands at the time, and London performed quite often and was loved by the audiences. He was simply the BEST. We still remember his jokes and talk about him quite a bit.

    He is a great person and was always a gentleman.

    I wish he would come back to Poconos to perform, we miss you London.

  23. I enjoyed seeing him on Ed Sullivan so much. Then he seemed to disappear from TV. It’s nice to hear that he is still around. I’d love to go to one of his shows.

  24. I worked opposite London Lee at the Sahara Reno for a few months during a long stint as bandleader for a Vegas type topless revue called PIN-UPS 2001.

    It was 1979…I was only 18. He use to crack us up with a rousing rendition of Bobby Vinton’s “Melody Of Love” replacing the la la la part with the words “Oy Vey Cocky Doody Mooney…My Melody Of Love….Funny guy…Others who worked the opposite slot included, Rip Taylor, Rusty Warren, and the legendary, Waylon and Madame….Good Times!

  25. just trying to remember the comedians, that made me laugh. iremember him being differant and funny, glad to hear he is still performing, love to catch him.

  26. hey, your web site comes up FIRST when googling london lee! and btw, love the name of your web site and wish i’d thought of it!

    tonight i commented at another web site about london lee. the site had an article about “names” and one of the names mentioned was “london.” the article said that this is becoming a popular baby name.

    brought back memories of london lee, who i am certain the author of the article has never hear of – which is too bad! london lee was cute and funny in a wonderfully neurotic way. remember his silly nasal laugh?

    anyway, i posted the best joke london told of his name (which by reading this blog i can see that london wasn’t even his own name! i had NO idea!). he told it on the sullivan show back in the 60s and i thought it was hilarious. i was a teenager at that time.

    the joke went (something) like this:

    “Yeah, I’m London. My folks named me after the city I was conceived in. Thank God, they weren’t in Elizabeth, New Jersey.”

    i think it would be a hoot to see him today! love ya, london/alan!

  27. Just watched Letterman tonight. His guest was Bill Cosby who made a reference to London Lee for the sole enjoyment of Dave. He also speculated that London was a “dentist” by now. Any way since this is now the unofficial repository of London Lee information, I thought it should be noted.

  28. I was wondering why I got two London Lee comments in one night!

    Being the London Lee repository has been very entertaining for me. He has been shown to be both a creep and genius–aren’t we all!

    It has been pointed out London isn’t in Wikipedia. I hope someone will fix that soon. Until then, glad to have you here.

  29. One of my old high school classmates is a comic and I was googling around and found your site. Boy did it bring back memories, but for different reasons than stated above. I used to live next door to the Lee family and babysat his children. You entered the drive through gates with big “L’s” on the front and parked around the fountain. The house was grand with a marble entry way, circular stair case and the living room in all white and black that no-one could touch (how very 70’s) He was always welcoming, polite and funny, even though I had to be all of 12-14 at the time, what did I know at that age. Just that I was babysitting for a famous family. They treated me like family – I was over there all the time since he was always out performing – what did I know being so young – this was back in the late 70’s, – lost track of the family – as my family moved and I know they did too.

    1. Hi ijm,

      Thanks for bring back some wonderful memories. Your right it was a beautiful home and the girls were very well behaved. I thought London’s driveway was the longest in NJ, not just Closter. There was also another famous baseball umpire who live near London as well.

      Take care,

      Bobby @ rtbucci@hotmail.com

  30. London used to live in Closter and stop at the gas station I worked at part time as a kid. He was a nice guy and I went to a few of his shows (one was the old flagship – now a PC Richards)to see his standup. He was very funny. What ever happened to his blow-up with Jackie Vernon?

  31. I’m an old (and very close friend) of London, we use’d to hang out together in Jersey, but I have lost track of him. Is he doing any shows in So. Florida? I would love to see him. If you speak to him , tell him that Fred & Renee would like to see him.

  32. I remember hearing one of his songs, “I Love You” from his only album on the radio one night in February. I’ve been trying to find out where to find this song, for it was so hilariously creepy. The only words were “I love you” and maniacal laughing. I’d love to see this guy perform.

  33. I also remember watching London Lee when he appeared on the Ed Sullivan show in the early 1960’s. … And, later, I met London’s parents while they vacationed in Miami…at the Fontainebleau Hotel. Mike and Eva Levine were so very gracious, and I have many fond memories of the

  34. I also remember watching London Lee when he appeared on the Ed Sullivan show in the early 1960’s. … And, later, I met London’s parents while they vacationed in Miami…at the Fontainebleau Hotel. Mike and Eva Levine were so very gracious, and I have many fond memories of them.

  35. What a nice site! It brought back so many memories. And yes I came upon this site when I was thinking about a smiley bug-eyed comedian whose name escaped me. It was London Lee. I remember watching him on the Merv Griffin show and he was very funny. Glad to hear that he’s still kicking and making people laugh.

  36. Just saw London Lee last night at the New York Comedy Club in Boca… he did a 7 minute guest set and destroyed the club. After wards, he sat outside, sporting a purple tinted eyeglasses and smoked cigarettes with the other comics (it was raining too!)…

    The man looked very well for his age and is still funny enough to crush a room despite the age difference between the crowd and him. Funny is funny.

  37. I knew London Lee in the early nineteen eighties when he was married to my girlfriend, Judy Kreston, who passed away last December. They lived down the hall from me and my husband, Bozo The Clown. Judy and I bonded I am sure because we both had clowns for husbands. I remember Judy telling me that London was fearful that someone would poisen his food, and he made Judy taste everything they ate (that she cooked) before he would take a bite. He was pretty nutty and insecure then, and after they divorced, I never saw them again. I also divorced Bozo but just last year, Judy told me that London called her when he was in town, after forty years, and asked if he could stay over at her town house, where she lived with her husband, daughter and grandchildren. She said yes and he did. I’m glad he is well and still working or at least still working.

  38. I just saw him Friday night – he was at the NY Comedy Club in Boca Raton on July 9, 2010. Then I ran into him at a local hotel this morning. He may be old but he is funnier then ever and sharp as a tack.

  39. I am a new MC at the New York Comedy Club in Boca Raton, FL. I was the MC this past weekend. Before a show it is always a little hectic as you never know who the guest spots are going to be. The manager of the club told me that a living legend was going to do 5-7 minutes, London Lee. The manager saw that I had NO clue who that was. “London Lee, who is he, where is he?” I asked. The manager pointed to a old man , smoking a cigarette, and wearing purplish sunglasses on (it was 9:30PM). I said to the manager, “that guy?” “He’s a legend!” he replied. I said, “I’m sure he’s a legend, that’s obvious, look how old he is!!!, do I need to bring him oxygen on stage too!” I was being very sarcastic to the manager. He just looked at me and said with a smile “you watch”.

    I did. I saw an old man, who I assumed was going to suck at best, slowly get up on stage. Sit in a chair, grabbed the mic and DESTROYED THE CROWD!!!!! London Lee is not only funny for a old guy, HE IS FUNNY no matter what comedian you compare him to today! He should go on last comic standing. He would kill. I am humbled… Deeply humbled.

    1. Hey Jason,

      Thanks for sharing your story! I worked for London back in the late 70’s and early 80’s. I meet so many wonderful people while in his employee. I had so many special momements during this time. I’ll never forget when Frank Sinatra called the house oe when we hung out with Sammy Davis Jr. in New York, I recall he was staying at the Essex House. It was awesome!

      Take care,

      Bobby @ rtbucci@hotmail.com

  40. I remember seeing London Lee on the Ed Sullivan show. I also remember news articles about London Lee’s “disappearance.” In those days, of course, there was no Google. I was wondering if anyone remembered with more specificity this story, as I was just a young kid at the time. After those initial story(s), I never saw a followup or saw him perform again.

  41. I am a close friend of London’s and we work some shows together. As I’m writing this, I’m talking to London on his cell phone and he is so excited and grateful that he still has so many supporting fans. He asked that if any old friend’s want to reach him, please email me, and I will get him the message. nick8100@gmail.com

    London wanted me to leave you with a story:

    I bought a dog. A little tiny dog and I brought him home. And for 2 hours all the dog did was hump my leg. So i named him SEX. But one day SEX ran away. There I was, 4am in an alley way looking for him and a cop says to me, “what’s an old man doing in an ally at 4 o clock in the morning?” I said I’m looking for SEX.” — My case comes up Tuesday!

    One More from London!

    Last night I had dinner with 4 comedians. When the check came, everybody ran for the john, but I wouldn’t let them in.

  42. London Lee will be headlining 3 shows at the New York Comedy Club on Glades Road in Boca Raton, Florida. He will be there Friday July 30- Saturday July 31. Friday show is 8pm; Saturday show is 8pm & 10pm. The club phone # is (561) 470-6887.

  43. London will be performing at the New York Comedy Club on Glades Road in Boca Raton, Florida. Friday July 30 (8pm) and Saturday July 31 (8pm & 10pm).
    Call the club for details – (561) 470-6887

  44. Last nite London Lee performed at the New York Comedy Club on Glades Road in Boca Raton, Florida. Well folks, HE HIT IT RIGHT OUTTA THE PARK and Burned the Building down! Wow! We had sooo much fun and couldn’t stop laughing! I had never heard of him before, now I am a fan! Any show he has, we are going to! Thank you very very much London, you are a Pro! One of the funniest if not the Funniest I’ve ever heard!!! My family and guests that attended last nite were blown away! What a class act. We wish you nothing but continued success! Whenever is the next show, we will be there! I read up about him just now on the internet, but I didn’t need to do that to find out he’s a legend! LONDON! LONDON! WE WANT MORE!

  45. Back in the mid-to-late 1970s, when I was a wee lad, I believe London Lee was a member at the Englewood Country Club in Englewood, NJ. I recall seeing his name on a board, which may have been the Club Champions board, multiple times. Was/is he that good a golfer? The club was known for its many famous members, as well as guests, including Buddy Hackett, Joey Bishop, Rocky Graziano, Willie Mays, among others. I had heard Frank Sinatra used to stop by on occasion, but I never saw him. The club hosted the US Open Golf Championship in the early 1900s. Teddie Gewant owned the club, a flamboyant type, and a big gambler, who always wore a distinctive straw hat every time he played. I remember, whenever he teed off on the first hole, a par-four over water, if he hit a good shot, we would hear “On in Two! On in Two!” (as if to say, I can reach the green in two shots). After a poor tee shot, he would say, “On in Three, On in Three”! Former Long Drive Champion Evan “Big Cat” Williams was the golf pro there, and former tennis pro Yannick Noah dropped by to play tennis once. It was a magical place, until it was sold and turned into a housing development complex, and vanished from the face of the earth in the late 1970s.

  46. Over the years I have run into London in AC, NY and FL… still a funny and crazy guy… here’s one he told me that made me fall on the floor… Rodney Dangerfield – DEAD, George Carlin – DEAD, Buddy Hacket – DEAD… two more deaths and I’ll be number one again! I look forward to seeing London at the NY Comedy Club in Lauderdale By The Sea on Sept, 24 and 25… unless he ends up one of the two!

  47. I suddenly had this thought about London Lee and wondered what ever became of him. I remember seeing him on the Ed Sullivan Show – and then, as you’ve mentioned, he seemed to fall off the face of the earth. He was a fantastic comic – better then some of his contemporaries who later went on to make it big. I’m sure there’s a story behind his “disappearance” – you said in your piece, “stuff happens,” but then never went on to elaborate. It’s just good to know he’s alive and well and not living in some homeless shelter somewhere. I live in Fort Lauderdale and just might go to that Chanukah party at the American Polish Club in Lake Worth in December.

    Anyway, Geoff, thanks for taking the time to write about London. There’s not much else out there other than he was a comedian in the 60’s who appeared on Sullivan, Carson, etc. We already knew that!

  48. Was house hunting with the wife in Closter, NJ, when we came across a once-magnificent house, now with somewhat faded glory, at the end of a private road.

    The home had a circular driveway with an ornate fountain in the center, and still maintained a lot of charm. Although it was well-worn and in need of an upgrade, there was something about it that I liked.

    What really got me, though, was when I saw the swimming pool in the back-yard with the words “The Rich Kid,” painted on the pool’s floor.

    I went nuts, and immediately started telling my wife all about London Lee, who had clearly lived in the house– a fact confirmed by the current owner.

    Eight years my junior my wife had never heard of London Lee, and to this day jokes that I must be the only one who remembers him

    And warmly remember his Ed Sullivan appearances I do. And I’m glad to see that so many others do, as well.

    Thanks for posting this site, and I wish London all the best. Not too many out there who can bring a smile 50 years later at just the thought of his name.

    P.S. we never bought the house because, as the last home at the end of a long private road, the owner was responsible for plowing the snow — a potential pain in the neck.

    But I still regret not living in the house where a pool saying “The Rich Kid” would greet me every day.

  49. His Father was Mike Levine, his Mother was Edith Levine. Aunt Edith was my Mother’s Mother’s Sister.
    They were great people, my Uncle Mike was a real Mensch, helped everyone in the family who need it. My Aunt was a Class Act, London was in “THE GAMBLER” with James Caan, had a nice role.
    Anyway I speak to London’s Sister all the time, she is a fabulous person, but typical that families have falling outs between siblings.
    I use to watch London on Ed Sullivan, he was funny.
    My Uncle Mel Haber who owns the INGLESIDE INN in Palm Springs carried on my London’s Father Tradition of taking care of the Family, my Uncle Mel is a TRUE MENSCH just like MIKE LEVINE was.
    I am honored and humbled by both men.
    I wish Alan well.

    1. Hey Rich,

      Thanks for sharing these wonderful memories. I never met London’s parents or his sister. I’d like to share this story about your Uncle Mike, London Father. I worked for London in the late 70’s and 80’s. After I stopped working for him I took a job with AT&T and on my resume I listed my employment history with London. A few months goes by and the girl from HR stopped by to chat and asked me about London. She told me her father was the doorman (Frank) at the apartment in NYC where the levine’s lived. The Rolls Royce, the Manhattan shirt company. She told me how generous London’s family was and how kind. I invited Frank and his daugther to one of London’s shows at Mount Airy Lodge and I didn’t tell London about it and it was a wonderful reunion!

      Best regards,

      Bobby @ rtbucci@hotmail.com

    2. Hi! I’m not even sure if you will get this but I’m Alan Levine’s great niece, his sister Susan Levine’s granddaughter. Mikey and Edith were my great grandparents. Would love to catch up. Don’t want to put my email address out here for everyone to see but you can Facebook friend me at Bari Lewis Klein and we can privately text.

  50. I just met London Lee on Christmas Eve. He was sharing a Hospital room with my Brother-in-Law. Very nice guy and he even traded some funny spars with the Nurse believe it or not.

  51. Me and my family met London for the first time when we stayed at a motel i Lauderdale by the Sea in Nov this year. We´ve never heard of him before, but he was a really nice and humble person. And funny too! We know that he was going to perform at NYCC at New years eve, so we have checked their website for comments (we live in Sweden). Yesterday when I called NYCC they told me that the show was cancelled because London was in hospital, which worried us a lot. Glad to hear from Larry that he although traded some funny spares with the Nurse:-). If You see him again, please give him our best regards!

  52. Something very interesting recently came up. For as long as I knew him, one of the achievements of which he seemed most proud was his alleged appearance in the Woody Allen film, “Broadway Danny Rose” (see his booking agent’s website – http://www.lowbrowentertainmentco.com/booking.php). But a recent review of the IMDb “Complete Cast and Crew” (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0087003/fullcredits) fails to show his participation at all! Funny guy, yes!

  53. This is amazing to find- WOW. I am London Lee’s cousin, my grandmother Rose was the sister of Mike Levine ( Alan Levine’s dad). When I was 14 I saw London Lee at the Copacabana in NYC, what a treat. Glad to hear he is still making folks laugh.

  54. Great to find this site! I remember London Lee’s fantastic appearances on Sullivan, etc., from back in the day. He was awesome! I’m very sad to note that I can’t find any of those great performances anywhere on the internets. That’s a tragedy.

    If there is anyone out there with old recordings of any of his TV appearances, it would be great to see them online.

    And, London, if you’re out there, be aware that you’ve still got tons of fans out here who haven’t forgotten you. We loved you then, we still love you now! All the best!

  55. We´re very glad to here that!! We´ve been really worried about him; tried to phone him several times – send him our best regards from Sweden if you see him!
    Thank you!!!

  56. I used to work at the Granit Hotel in the Catskill mountains in the late ’60’s and early 70’s. Kim Irwin was the mc of the nightclub. London Lee would also come up there to entertain.

  57. London was an enormous inspiration to me. I’ve gone on to become a doctor and comedy writer: Howard stern roasts, Comedy Central Roasts, Friar’s Club, etc.

  58. London just performed at Comedy Club in Boca Raton. He was sharp as a wit, many of the jokes went right over the heads of some. He is a classic!!!!!

  59. One of London’s Ed Sullivan appearances was just released on DVD as part of a Rolling Stones collection. He was on their first Sullivan show in 1964.

  60. I was a bartender at the Nevele Hotel in the 80’s. He was very funny and we had some good times. A bunch of us watched “The Gambler” together and shared a lot of laughs. I hope is is doing well.

  61. HANK SAYS: LOVED HIM WHEN I WAS YOUNG . READ ALL THE MEMORIES BUT DIDN’T READ THAT ANYONE REMEMBERED LONDON’S INFECTIOUS LAUGH AFTER EVERY JOKE HE TOLD! I ALSO WHEN YOUNG RESEMBLED HIM WITH LOOKS AND HEIGHT. ONE NIGHT WHILE WALKING AC BOARDWARD TWO OLDER LADY FANS KEPT FOLLOWING ME SWEARING I WAS HIM!!IT WAS FUNNY BUT LOOKING BACK NOW I WAS HONORED!!

  62. As a young lad, I was a caddy at the Englewood, NJ Country Club…it was hard work as the course was very hilly and most days I would do a double…that’s two bags on your shoulders for 36 holes in the blazing sun…I often say that any job I had after the age of 16 wasn’t as hard as those days of being a caddy…and that includes 20 years in the NYPD…anyway, London was a member there along with many comedians of the day such as Joey Bishop, Corbett Monica and Buddy Hackett…Buddy actually gave me a ride home one day!
    I caddied for London several times…he liked to spend time on the putting green before going out on his round..a nice man and very good golfer…impeccably dressed..that’s what sticks with me after all these years..I would enjoy seeing him perform some day and wish him the best,,,please pass on my regards to him if possible.

  63. London is in my facility for physical therapy. he’s doing great. He will be doing stand up for me in a few hours.

  64. Damn that asshole is still alive? Jesus when will he die?
    Deadbeat husband and father to 3 kids.
    He’ll be burried in Pottersfield!
    His entire family hates him!

  65. When older borscht belt comics joked about how poor their families were when they were kids, Baby-Boomer London Lee talked about how rich his parents were in his youth. Joey Bishop (when he had his late night talk show with Regis Philbin as his sidekick) used to introduce London Lee as “The rich kid.” We enjoyed him b’cuz unlike old-timers such as Milton Berle and Alan King, us baby-boomers could identify with the rich kid. ☺

  66. The Closter Historical Society is including London Lee on its new Hall of Fame. Does anyone have information about when or where he lived in Closter?

  67. I am sorry to report that London Lee died September 29, 2015. I used to watch him on the Ed Sullivan Show in the 1960’s. I am sorry I never got to see him in person.

  68. jerry lewis died today….and the fourth thought that went through my mind was,”well at least there’s still London Lee”…the next thought was “or do we?” so of course i went to google, which brought me here and to the knowledge, Gone!
    i spent a bunch of weeks in the 70’s in my late teens, working as a stand in for Paul Sorvino on the set of the James Caan film “The Gambler”….i was often trapped on set with London. he never, ever stopped talking/cracking jokes and i never stopped laughing. i couldn’t believe, at the time that anyone could be so funny and so consistently so. i assumed at the time that it was a proximity issue and that i was just laughing so hard because he was right in front of me. since then i’ve been near many funny people that haven’t made laugh let alone sent me into pee in the pants hysterics. so it must have been London himself and his i’m never going to let you catch your breath, style of comedy.

  69. I remember London Lee as the hired commedian at the Baldwin High School Class of 1971 Prom held at The Galaxy in Plainview, NY He was very funny and one of his signature jokes went along the lines of “What sign were you born under?….I think mine was “keep off the grass” “

  70. My favorite Jackie Vernon ad lib happened on the Merv Griffin show after London Lee’s stand up act completely bombed. Afterwards Lee was being interviewed by Merv, with Jackie sitting next to him. Lee was talking about how his dad bought this and his dad bought that and still not getting any laughs. Vernon leaned over and interjected “Too bad he couldn’t buy a funny kid”.

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