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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5201

Fiddles And Bows

1 Fiddles And Bows (Emile Deltour)
ROGER ROGER Conducting THE MODE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Vogue Mode MDINT 9080 1962
2 Close As Pages In A Book (Sigmund Romberg; Dorothy Fields, arr. Robert Farnon)
ROBERT FARNON AND HIS ORCHESTRA (LP label credits ‘Jack Saunders Orchestra’)
Everest SDBR 1011 1958
3 Blow Gabriel Blow (Cole Porter)
FREDERICK FENNELL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury PPS 2024 1962
4 Nicola (Steve Race)
STEVE RACE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone 45-R 4894 1962
5 Always On My Mind (Philip Green)
PHILIP GREEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia 45-DB 4851 1962
6 Scenic Railway (Roger Roger)
ROGER ROGER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Pacific STO-E 17002 1962
7 Chaconne (Edmund Kötscher)
HANS GEORG ARLT AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Qualiton PSP 7109 1959
8 Poppycock (Cyril Watters)
WESTWAY STUDIO ORCHESTRA
Southern MQ 561 1962
9 The Lonely Dancer (Eric Parkin, arr. Robert Farnon)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON
Chappell C 735 1962
10 The End Of A Love Affair (Edward C. Redding)
CYRIL STAPLETON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LK 4145 1956
11 The Bottle Theme (Robert Roger Maurice Chauvigny)
ROBERT CHAUVIGNY AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Top Rank 45-JAR 142 1959
12 American Hoe-Down (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM C 788 1959
13 Ole Guapa (Ari Malando)
WERNER MULLER AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘Ricardo Santos’)
Polydor LPHM 46012 1957
14 Right As The Rain (Harold Arlen, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CS 8360 1960
15 Bubble Car (Felton Rapley)
TELECAST ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 739 1962
16 Chablis (Franck Pourcel)
FRANCK POURCEL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Capitol T 10229 1960
17 The Strong And The Tender – Concerto (Bernie Wayne, real name Bernard Weitzner)
BERNIE WAYNE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
ABC Paramount ABC 182 1957
18 Out And About (King Palmer)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘Paul Franklin’ on disc label)
Paxton PR 614 1954
19 Romantic Rhapsody (Felton Rapley)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON (as ‘David King’ on disc label)
Chappell C 401 1950
20 Joyeux Réveil (Roger Roger)
ROGER ROGER Conducting THE MODE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Vogue Mode MDINT 9080 1962
21 Anglesey (from ‘British Scenes’) (Trevor Duncan, real name Leonard Charles Trebilco)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by DOLF VAN DER LINDEN (as ‘Nat Nyll’ on disc label)
Boosey & Hawkes OT2341 1959
22 Shopping Tour (Bruce Campbell)
LANSDOWNE LIGHT ORCHESTRA (probably STUTTGART RADIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by KURT REHFELD)
Impress IA 124-B 1956
23 Some Of These Days (Shelton Brooks)
WERNER MULLER AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘Ricardo Santos’)
Polydor LPHM 46091 1958
24 A Man With A Dream (from the musical "Seventh Heaven") (Victor Young; Stella Unger, arr. Jimmy Mundy)
THE NEW YORK ‘POPS’ SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by TONY ACQUAVIVA
MGM SE 3226 1961

Stereo: tracks 2, 3, 6, 14, 16, 24 ; rest in mono.

Guild Music begins its second Century of Light Music recordings with the tried and tested formula of old friends, plus some new names making their first appearance in "The Golden Age of Light Music" series. Roger Roger (1911-1995) sets the ball rolling with three attractive works, which will appeal to the many admirers of this French musician. The opening track, which gives the title to this collection, was composed by Belgian violinist Emile Deltour (1899-1956). The other two under the baton of Monsieur Roger are his own compositions: Scenic Railway paying tribute to a once popular attraction at many fairgrounds; and Joyeux Réveil, although one wonders if this ‘joyful awakening’ is an accurate portrayal of the emotions of those in the armed forces who have traditionally been awakened from their slumbers by a trumpet call.

Roger Roger was a leading figure on the French music scene for many years, and his fine compositions and arrangements also won him many admirers internationally. He started writing for French films towards the end of the 1930s (firstly documentaries, then feature films), and was responsible for the famous pantomime sequences in Marcel Carné’s "Les Enfants du Paradis"(1944). After the Second World War Roger played piano and conducted a 35-piece orchestra for a major French weekly radio series "Paris Star Time" (Paris a l’heure des Etoiles), which was sent all over the world and even broadcast in the USA. His own instrumental cameos that were featured in the show brought him to the attention of the London publishers Chappell & Co, who were rapidly expanding their Recorded Music Library of background music at that time. Roger’s quirky compositions soon became available to radio, television and film companies around the world, and seventeen have already appeared in this series of Guild Light Music CDs.

The Canadian composer/conductor Robert Farnon (1917-2005) also makes three conducting appearances this time. His talents as a top arranger are employed in Close As Pages In A Book which Sigmund Romberg (1887-1951) wrote in 1944 for the Broadway show "Up In Central Park". It was to be his last staged work produced during his lifetime. The pianist Eric Parkin (b. 1924) must have been delighted when Farnon was commissioned by Chappell & Co to arrange his charming The Lonely Dancer for their Recorded Music Library. In 1997 Parkin repaid the compliment by recording a CD of his own piano transcriptions of Farnon’s most popular compositions.

The third composer whose work is conducted by Robert Farnon is Edmund Felton Rapley (1907-1976) who graduated from being a church organist in Gosport, to a familiar name on the BBC especially during the 1940s and 1950s. He studied at Winchester Cathedral School, and was a regular organist for the Gaumont British Picture Corporation – sometimes being invited to perform the opening concert on newly installed organs such as the Wurlitzer in Hanley on 11 February 1929. He was a prolific composer and arranger, seemingly at home in varied styles although many of his arrangements were hymns and religious works. His own pieces included the Overture Down The Solent (on Guild GLCD5140), Southern Holiday (GLCD5157), the catchy Peacock Patrol (GLCD5143) and Young Man’s Fancy (GLCD5182) - the last two both written under the pseudonym ‘Peter Barrington’. Among other notable compositions of light music were Portrait of Claire (on GLCD5172 - based on Schumann’s song Devotion), Ecstasy, Evening in Capri and Romantic Rhapsody which appears on this CD. Into the 1960s he remained a celebrity, often being billed as "the famous BBC Organist" when appearing in concerts. Charles Williams (1893-1978) conducts Rapley’s other contribution, dedicated to that 1950s and 60s nightmare on the road - the Bubble Car.

The American musician Frederick Fennell (1914-2004) gained an international reputation as a conductor. He tended to specialise in wind bands, notably the Eastman Rochester Wind Ensemble, which he was reputed to have devised in 1952 when recovering from hepatitis. But his wide experience during his long life (he died aged 90) allowed him to participate successfully in many areas of the music scene.

The British pianist, composer, radio and television presenter Steve (Stephen Russell) Race, OBE (1921-2009) first made his mark as a pianist and arranger with many top British bands of the post-war years. His wide-ranging career also embraced conducting for many TV shows, and he was a popular compere of panel games and music programmes. His charming composition Nicola was dedicated to his daughter.

Philip Green (1911-1982) began his professional career at the age of eighteen playing in various orchestras. Within a year he became London’s youngest West End conductor at the Prince of Wales Theatre. His long recording career was launched with EMI in 1933, and he is credited with at least 150 film scores. A compulsive worker, he appeared in countless radio programmes and also composed numerous pieces of mood music for major London publishers including Chappell & Co, Francis Day & Hunter, Paxton and EMI’s Photoplay Music, where he ultimately became the only contributor to the catalogue.

Hans Georg Arlt (1927-2011) started learning the violin at the age of six, and later studied under Professor Max Strub in Berlin. In 1946 he began his distinguished radio career, and when the RIAS Dance Orchestra was formed in 1948 he led the string section for a while. In the following years he became a familiar name on German radio and television with his String Orchestra, and was the Concert Master of choice for many leading German conductors, such as Werner Müller, Werner Eisbrenner, Heinz Kiessling and Hans Carste. In addition he recorded a vast amount of music for German radio stations with his own large string orchestra, employing the finest arrangers including Willy Hoffmann, Paul Kuhn, Jerry van Rooyen, Gustav Trost, Arno Flor, Günther Gürsch and Helmut Gardens.

Although not as well-known as most of the other composers on this CD, Henry Cyril Watters (1907-1984) was highly respected by music publishers, with his works such as Poppycock readily accepted for their unfailing high standards. At times he was employed as a staff arranger by Boosey & Hawkes and Chappell, but his prolific output was also accepted by several London publishers. For some years he generously devoted some of his energies in running the Light Music Society for the benefit of his fellow musicians.

During the 1950s and 1960s the English violinist and conductor Cyril Stapleton (1914-1974) was well-known in Britain, thanks to his many radio broadcasts and recordings. Before the second world war he gained much experience in the bands of Jack Payne and Jack Hylton. He enlisted in the Royal Air Force, and towards the end of the war was a member of the RAF Symphony Orchestra. This rekindled an earlier interest in symphonic music, and back in civilian life he decided to concentrate on this area of the music scene. At one particular time he was a member of three orchestras: the London Symphony, the National Symphony and the Philharmonia Orchestra. But he gradually drifted back into working with popular singers such as Dick James, who later achieved fame and fortune as publisher for The Beatles. In 1952 Cyril became conductor of the BBC Show Band, at the time the BBC’s most prestigious outfit in light entertainment.

The composer, arranger and conductor Robert Chauvigny was a well-known figure in post-war French popular music circles, working with the likes of Charles Aznavour and Edith Piaf. His own composition The Bottle Theme is also known by the intriguing alternative title The Bottle Hymn.

David Rose (1910-1990) was one of the biggest names in American light music circles during the middle years of the 20th century. Born in London, England ‘lost’ him when the family moved to the USA when he was aged just four, but he retained a love for his birthplace and in his later life his fascination with steam railways often brought him back across the Atlantic. A prolific composer and arranger, he is an established Guild favourite, and American Square Dance,one of his own brilliant creations, reveals the lush string sound of his magnificent orchestra at its very best.

Werner Müller (1920-1998) was a bassoonist who became the first conductor of the RIAS (Radio In American Sector) Dance Band based in Berlin. It was not long before Müller began to realise that the public’s love affair with the swing era was gradually starting to wane, and sixteen strings were added to the line-up. The band had built up a strong following through its Polydor recordings, and by the mid-1950s the labels dropped the ‘RIAS’ tag and simply credited ‘Werner Müller and his Orchestra’. He also recorded under the pseudonym ‘Ricardo Santos’ when playing Latin American music, such as Ole Guapa. A good example of the way in which strings became an integral part of the dance band can be heard in the number made famous by Sophie Tucker Some Of These Days. It is likely that the solo violinist is the afore-mentioned Hans Georg Arlt.ans Geoth

Percy Faith (1908-1976) hardly needs any introduction to Guild ‘regulars’. Born in Toronto, Canada, in 1940 he moved permanently to the USA where he quickly established himself through radio and recordings. From the 1950s onwards his fame spread internationally, due to the great success of his numerous long playing albums. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Faith arranged all his own material.

Franck Pourcel (1913-2000) is recognised as one of the big names in French popular music. During his long career he recorded over 2,000 songs, and achieved world-wide success with I Will Follow Him which he co-composed with Paul Mauriat. Chablis comes from an album devoted to French wines he recorded for the American market.

The 1950s seems to have been a very busy period for the American Bernie Wayne (born Bernard Weitzner 1919-1993), composer of The Strong And The Tender. In the USA he is best known for his "Miss America" Beauty Pageant theme, and the hit song Blue Velvet. His string of instrumental successes included Vanessa (GLCD5189), Port-au-Prince (GLCD5130) and Veradero (GLCD5111).

The Dutch maestro Dolf van der Linden (real name David Gysbert van der Linden, 1915-1999) conducts two tracks in this collection, by two distinguished British composers who contributed a vast amount of music to various recorded music libraries. Cedric King Palmer (1913-1999) was able to adapt his writing to many different styles, and Out And About finds him in a decidedly busy mood. To survive in the music business meant accepting many varied commissions, and King Palmer could turn his hand to making popular arrangements of the classics which he often conducted with his own orchestra on the BBC Light programme in the 1940s and 1950s. His many bright and tuneful pieces disguised the fact that he possessed a serious knowledge of music: at the age of 26 he completed a study of the work of Granville Bantock (1868-1946), and in 1944 Palmer wrote ‘Teach Yourself Music’ for the Hodder and Stoughton Home University Series which ran to several editions. He ceased composing mood music in the 1970s, and towards the end of his life he became a patient and popular piano teacher, with sometimes over 60 pupils on his books. Trevor Duncan (real name Leonard CharlesTrebilco, 1924-2005) was working as a BBC sound engineer when one of his first compositions, High Heels (on Guild GLCD 5124) made the light music world sit up and take notice. Eventually his successful and prolific output mushroomed to such an extent that he had to give up his ‘day job’ at the BBC, and also find several different publishers simply because he was writing too much for just one to handle.

Bruce Campbell was one of several writers who owed much to his association with Robert Farnon. He was a fellow Canadian, who actually came to Britain some years before Farnon, and played trombone with various British bands during the 1930s including Ambrose, Jack Harris, Jack Hylton, Sid Millward, Hugo Rignold and Lew Stone. Campbell assisted Farnon on his post-war BBC radio shows, and eventually became a frequent contributor to various mood music libraries. Shopping Tour was written for the Inter-Art (Impress) Mood Music Library, and it joins nine of his own works already on Guild.

The American composer and conductor Tony (Anthony) Acquaviva (his name is also given in reference works as Nicholas Paul Acquaviva - 1925-1998) - although not a frequent visitor to the recording studios, gained recognition in the USA through his involvement with the Symphony of the Air orchestra and as conductor of the 135-strong New York ‘Pops’ Symphony Orchestra which promoted new works by young composers. A Man With A Dream comes from the 1955 Broadway revue "Seventh Heaven" composed by Victor Young (1900-1956). He already had a glittering reputation for his many fine songs, and his Oscar-winning score for the film "Around The World In Eighty Days" was only a year away. Sadly the show (based on a classic silent film from the 1920s) closed after only 44 performances, and its failure was reported to have broken Victor Young’s heart.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5202

Cinema Classics : Songs and Themes from the Silver Screen

1 Tara’s Theme (from the film "Gone With The Wind") (Max Steiner)
CYRIL ORNADEL AND THE STARLIGHT SYMPHONY
MGM SE 3954 1961
2 "The Magnificent Seven" – Theme from the film (Elmer Bernstein)
AL CAIOLA AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV/United Artists 45-POP 889 1961
3 "Ben-Hur" – Prelude (Miklos Rozsa)
THE CINEMA SOUND STAGE ORCHESTRA
Stereo Fidelity SF 16400 1962
4 "The Waltz Of The Toreadors" – Theme from the film (Richard Addinsell)
PINEWOOD STUDIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by KEN JONES
Parlophone 45-R 4906 1962
5 "Exodus" – Main Title from the Film (Ernest Gold)
BILLY VAUGHN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Dot DLP 25424 1962
6 "Friendly Persuasion" (Thee I Love) (theme from the film) (Dimitri Tiomkin)
RONNIE ALDRICH, Piano and THE DREAMERS
Decca 45-F 11283 1960
7 Look For A Star (from the film "Circus Of Horrors") (Mark Anthony, real name Tony Hatch)
BILLY VAUGHN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Dot DLP 25322 1960
8 On The Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe (from the film "The Harvey Girls") (Harry Warren; Johnny Mercer, arr. Roland Shaw)
FRANK CHACKSFIELD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca SKL 4048 1959
9 The Café Royal Waltz (from the film "The Trials Of Oscar Wilde") (Ron Goodwin)
RON GOODWIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Parlophone 45-R 4892 1962
10 Moon River (from the film "Breakfast at Tiffanys") (Henry Mancini)
DAVID CARROLL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury SML 60688 1962
11 "Picnic" – theme from the film (George W. Dunning)
RUSS CONWAY, piano, with TONY OSBORNE AND HIS ORCHESTRA and THE RITA WILLIAMS SINGERS
Columbia SCX 3388 1961
12 "Three Coins In The Fountain" – Title music (Jule Styne; Sammy Cahn, arr. Roland Shaw)
FRANK CHACKSFIELD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca SKL 4048 1959
13 "Mon Oncle" – Themes from the film (Franck Barcellini)
Film soundtrack : orchestra unidentified
Fontana TFE 17175 1958
14 Johnny’s Tune (from the film "Some People") (Ron Grainer)
GORDON FRANKS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone 45-R4929 1962
15 "It’s Great To Be Young" –Title music (Ray Martin)
RAY MARTIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA with THE CORONETS
Columbia SEG 7639 1956
16 "The Dam Busters" – March (Theme from the film) (Eric Coates)
ERIC COATES AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Pye Nixa N 15003 1955
17 Lady Barbara (from the film "Captain Horatio Hornblower, R.N.") (Robert Farnon)
THE LONDON FESTIVAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON
Delyse DS 6057 1960
18 "The Brothers Karamazov" – Love Theme (Bronislau Kaper)
HELMUT ZACHARIAS AND HIS MAGIC VIOLINS
Polydor LPHM 46091 1958
19 "The Razor’s Edge" Film Music (Alfred Newman)
ALFRED NEWMAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury MPL 6500 1956
20 "Invitation" - Theme from the film (Bronislau Kaper, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CL 577 1954
21 "The Robe" – Love theme from the film (Alfred Newman)
CYRIL ORNADEL AND THE STARLIGHT SYMPHONY
MGM SE 4033 1962
22 "Light In The Piazza" – Main Theme from the film (Mario Nascimbene, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CS 8583 1962
23 "King Of Kings" – Miracles of Christ (Miklos Rozsa)
THE CINEMA SOUND STAGE ORCHESTRA
Stereo Fidelity SF 16400 1962
24 "The Big Country" – Title music (Jerome Moross)
JEROME MOROSS Conducting Studio Orchestra

London / United Artists HA-T 2142 1958
Stereo: tracks 1, 3, 5, 7-12, 17, 21-23 ; rest in mono.

The title of this collection may raise a few eyebrows when the tracklisting is perused. Film buffs each have their own particular favourites when it comes to ‘classic’ movies, and the lists that regularly appear of ‘the very best films of all time’ often make one wonder whose opinions have been sought! Undoubtedly some of the films represented in this CD were outstanding, and have stood the test of time. Some others were very popular in their day, but for various reasons they have slipped from the conscious memory of many of us. Should this banish their music to perpetual oblivion? The listener will have to decide, when hearing some of the titles that are probably forgotten.

There is certainly nothing ‘forgotten’ about the first piece of music. From the 1930s onwards Hollywood film producers were blessed with a small group of very talented composers who were skilled at this new art form, and one of the finest was Viennese-born Max Steiner (full name Maximillian Raoul Walter Steiner, 1888-1971). Although his score for "Gone With The Wind" (1939) was nominated for an Oscar, it was the film itself that received the ultimate accolade. In all Steiner had 20 nominations, gaining the Oscar for three films: "The Informer" (1935), "Now Voyager" (1942) and "Since You Went Away" (1944) – a suite from this last film conducted by Steiner is on Guild GLCD5158. The version of Tara’s Theme conducted by Cyril Ornadel (1924-2011) benefits from a great arrangement by the English arranger and conductor, Brian Fahey (1919-2007), who provided many of the orchestrations for the Starlight Symphony recordings of the 1950s and 1960s.

New Yorker Elmer Bernstein (1922-2004) was also nominated for an Oscar (but didn’t win) for his score for "The Magnificent Seven" (1960). Nevertheless it was one of his most popular works, perhaps only eclipsed by his music for "The Great Escape" (1963). His career spanned fifty years, during which he composed music for hundreds of television and film productions. The version of the theme tune played by the guitarist, arranger and composer Al Caiola (Alexander Emil Caiola, born Jersey City 1920) was a hit in 1961. He has regularly played the guitar on many recording sessions by the top popular orchestras and singers.

Miklos Rozsa (1907-1995) is represented in this collection with his work for two prestigious films, "Ben-Hur" (1959) and "King Of Kings" (1961). He was born in Budapest and studied music in Germany, before moving to France in 1931. In 1935 he relocated to England, where he worked on several films for Alexander Korda’s London Films. His last project was "The Thief Of Baghdad" in 1940, and production was transferred to America from wartime Britain. Rozsa remained in the USA, and became an American citizen in 1946. This was a year after his great success with the film "Spellbound" (the theme is on Guild GLCD5135). His music on this CD is performed by The Cinema Sound Stage Orchestra, a name used by the American Miller International Company on their bargain basement priced Essex, Somerset and Stereo Fidelity labels. The recordings usually employed various European symphony and radio orchestras and were linked by the name of Joseph Francis Kuhn (1924-1962) who composed, arranged, scored or conducted most of the early ones.

From big budget American movies, the spotlight now shifts to a modest British production "The Waltz Of The Toreadors" (1962) which starred Peter Sellers. Muir Mathieson (1911-1975) conducted the score for the film soundtrack, but the English conductor Ken (Kenneth Victor) Jones (b. 1924) is in charge of the Pinewood Studio Orchestra on our recording. The music was in the safe hands of Richard Addinsell (1904-1977), one of the most famous British film composers of the last century, whose Warsaw Concerto from the film "Dangerous Moonlight" (1942) was the theme which spawned countless similar works in the ensuing years.

The film "Exodus" (1960) was criticised for being too long, but its composer was rewarded with an Oscar. Ernest Gold (Ernst Sigmund Goldner, 1921-1999) was born in Vienna, like Max Steiner, and he moved to the USA in 1938 to escape the Nazis. During a long and successful career, which stretched from 1945 to 1992, he wrote almost 100 film and television scores, and also composed classical works including a piano concerto, string quartet and a piano sonata. The main theme is played by the Billy Vaughn (1919-1991) Orchestra which was usually known for more pop-oriented arrangements. Vaughn began his career playing piano and singing baritone in the group ‘The Hilltoppers’, before joining Dot Records as musical director where he accompanied many of the label’s top singers. He became one of the most successful orchestra leaders during the rock’n’roll era, and from 1955 to 1970 he managed to get 36 titles into the USA Top 200.

Two tracks later Vaughn conducts a piece by the English composer Tony (Anthony Peter) Hatch (b. 1939), who enjoyed his first taste of success with Look For A Star which came from the British film "Circus of Horrors" (1960), although the main score was composed by Franz Reizenstein. By then film producers were asking for a pop song during the closing credits, and Hatch’s opus reached the charts in both Britain and America. Later he would achieve considerable fame with songs for Petula Clark, and with his second wife Jackie Trent he wrote the famous theme for the Australian TV soap "Neighbours".

Dimitri (Zinovievich) Tiomkin (born in the Ukraine, 1894-1979) received his musical training in Russia, then moved to Berlin following the Revolution to continue his studies. A spell in Paris working as part of a piano duo brought an offer of work from the USA in 1925, where he settled for a while in New York. His wife found work in Hollywood supervising dance numbers for MGM, and he soon discovered his niche writing for films. Dimitri’s aspirations to be a top concert pianist were suddenly terminated by a broken arm in 1937, but by then his future career was secure. He became recognised as one of the top film composers, noted for his expansive style which gained him 22 Academy Award nominations resulting in four Oscars. The song from "Friendly Persuasion" (1956) was a big hit for Pat Boone, and our version features an early recording by the British pianist Ronnie Aldrich (1916-1993) under his own name.

On The Atcheson, Topeka And The Santa Fe from the 1946 MGM musical "The Harvey Girls" (1946) deservedly won an Oscar, thanks to a polished performance by Judy Garland (1922-1969). The same description applies to the superb arrangement by Roland Shaw (1920-2012) for our version conducted by Frank Chacksfield (1914-1995), who fronted a top English orchestra that had the distinction of reaching the top of the US charts with his Decca 78 of Ebb Tide. The same team returns later with the title theme from "Three Coins In The Fountain" (1954) – another Oscar winner.

Ron (Ronald Alfred) Goodwin(1925-2003) was a brilliant British composer, arranger and conductor, whose tuneful music reached the furthest corners of the world. As he gained recognition for his original compositions he became in demand for film scores, and the success of "The Trials Of Oscar Wilde" (1960) undoubtedly enhanced Goodwin’s reputation. This led to major commissions in the following years, like "633 Squadron" (1964), "Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines" (1965) and Alfred Hitchcock’s "Frenzy" (1972).

If you were forced to list the finest film songs of the 1960s, Moon River would surely feature among them. But it was only one of a string of hits by Henry Mancini (born Enrico Nicola Mancini, 1924-1994), who had a knack of composing flowing, and sometimes quirky, melodies that became immensely popular. Our version by David Carroll (born Rodell Walter ‘Nook’ Schreier, 1913-2008) fully respects the appeal of this delightful piece.

Russ Conway (Bristol-born Trevor Herbert Stanford, 1925-2000) was a largely self-taught British pianist who recorded a string of hit records for EMI’s Columbia label in the 1950s. His ‘reward’ was a number of prestigious albums featuring full orchestras, resulting in accomplished performances such as the theme from the 1955 film "Picnic", in which he is accompanied by the Tony Osborne (1922-2009) Orchestra.

"Mon Oncle" (1958) featured the French actor Jacques Tati reprising his popular character Monsieur Hulot in a film originally denounced by some critics, but which eventually proved a big success. The soundtrack music by Franck Barcellini features the title theme and another variation called Adieu Mario. An English language version of the film, released as "My Uncle", was nine minutes shorter, and slightly different from the original French release, with French signs replaced in English – no doubt for the benefit of American audiences.

Gordon Franks was a conductor who became well-known in Britain thanks to his regular broadcasts on the radio: he also made a number of records including several LPs of popular instrumental themes. His version of Johnny’sTune from the small-budget British film "Some People" (1962) compares favourably with the recording for wind ensemble by the tune’s composer, Australian-born Ron Erle Grainer (1922-1981) who spent most of his professional career in England. Although prolific in films and television, his most enduring music is the theme for the BBC TV series "Doctor Who", first screened in 1963.

Ray (Raymond Stuart) Martin (born Raymond Wolfgang Kohn in Vienna, 1918-1988) fled from the Nazis and settled in England before the outbreak of World War 2 where he became known as ‘Ray Martin’. He was one of the biggest names in British popular music during the 1950s, due to his work on radio, television, films and especially the recording studios. The film "It’s Great To Be Young" (1956) was a big hit at the time, which brilliantly captured the atmosphere of mid-1950s Britain in the pre-Beatles era. With top stars (John Mills, Cecil Parker) and a fine supporting cast it is not surprising that it has stood the test of time. Ray Martin provided the music, which was carefully used at intervals throughout the film. The opening sequence featured Ruby Murray singing You Are My First Love, which then dissolved into the rousing Ray Martin title music, heard in this collection.

Eric Coates (1886-1957) is widely regarded as the foremost English composer of light music during the first half of the 20th century. Towards the end of his life he wrote one of his most enduring works, the march from the film "The Dam Busters" (1954). In actual fact the producers approached his publishers for a march to use as the title music in the film (the main score was the work of Leighton Lucas), and it so happened that Coates’ famous march was already written, and waiting to be performed.

Like Coates, another major influence on the popular music scene was Canadian-born Robert Joseph Farnon (1917-2005) – acknowledged by many as one of the greatest light music composers and arrangers of his generation. His melodies such as Portrait Of A Flirt (on Guild GLCD5120) and Jumping Bean (GLCD5162) are familiar to millions around the world. His first important film assignment was for "Spring In Park Lane" (1948), and it was hardly surprising when Warner Bros commissioned him to write the score for their prestigious maritime saga "Captain Horatio Hornblower R.N." (1951). The stars were Gregory Peck and Virginia Mayo, and Farnon’s music reflected the attraction they both felt for each other, as well as the many dramatic swashbuckling scenes throughout the film. The Lady Barbara theme became a charming work divorced from the film, although our version comes from a concert suite that the composer later based on his score. Towards the end of his life Gregory Peck stated that this was one of his favourite films, and it still regularly appears on television.

The Polish-born composer Bronislau Kaper (1902-1983) worked in the musical theatre in Germany and France before settling in the USA where he tended to concentrate on films and television. In this collection he is represented with two film themes: "The Brothers Karamazov" (1954) and "Invitation" (1952). The theme from the former receives a suitably romantic tour-de-force from Helmut Zacharias (1920-2002), while Percy Faith (1908-1976) performs the theme from "Invitation" with the sophistication we have come to expect from this master of light orchestral music. Faith returns with the theme from "The Light In The Piazza" (1962) by Italy’s foremost film composer (possibly after Nino Rota) Mario Nascimbene (1913-2002).

Alfred Newman (1901-1970) also features in two film scores: "The Razor’s Edge" (1946) and "The Robe" (1953) which was the first film to be screened in CinemaScope, and for which Newman made an extended version of his famous Twentieth Century Fox fanfare. The composer conducts the former, while Cyril Ornadel returns for the Love Theme from "The Robe".

This collection of film music concludes with the memorable theme from "The Big Country" (1958). It was composed by Jerome Moross (1913-1983) and won him an Academy Award nomination. Born in New York, Moross initially concentrated on classical music, including a symphony which was premiered under the baton of Sir Thomas Beecham in 1943. Later he worked in films and television, and was highly regarded within the profession. For this collection the original 1958 mono recording has been used, rather than the later "rechanneled stereo" version, which has a noticeably inferior sound balance.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5203

Great British Composers – Volume 2

1 Commonwealth March (Walter Stott)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON
Chappell C628 1959
2 London Fair (Charles Williams)
DANISH STATE RADIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON (‘Melodi Light Orchestra conducted by Ole Jensen’ on disc label)
Chappell C 488 1954
"Harvest Time Suite" (Haydn Wood)
3 Harvesters’ Dance
4 Interlude
5 Harvest Home
REGENT CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by WILLIAM
HODGSON
Boosey & Hawkes BH 1931 1939
6 Muse In Mayfair (Vivian Ellis, arr. Sidney Torch)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Chappell C 346 1948
7 Nocturne (Stanford Robinson)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by STANFORD ROBINSON
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2129 1948
8 First Waltz (Reginald King)
WEST END CELEBRITY ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1187 1944
9 Windjammer Overture (John Ansell)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by JAY WILBUR
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2077 1946
10 Accent On Waltz (Sidney Torch)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Chappell C 333 1947
"London Again Suite" (Eric Coates)
11 Oxford Street (March)
12 Langham Place (Elegy)
13 Mayfair (Valse)
PHILHARMONIC PROMENADE ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERIC COATES
Parlophone PMD 1004 1953
14 A Young Man’s Fancy (Ernest Tomlinson)
BOSWORTH ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BCV 1372 1962
15 Punchinello (Frederic Curzon)
ROYAL AIR FORCE CENTRAL BAND Conducted by Squadron Leader A.E. SIMS
Boosey & Hawkes O 2137 1948
16 Dance Of The Snowflakes (Ronald Binge)
LANSDOWNE LIGHT ORCHESTRA (probably the Stuttgart Radio Orchestra)
Impress IA 206 1959
"In A Fairy Realm Suite" (Albert William Ketèlbey)
17 Moonlit Glade
18 Queen Fairy Dances
19 Gnomes’ March
THE LOUIS VOSS GRAND ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1130, 1131 1940
20 Persian Dance (Sir Granville Bantock)
LONDON PROMENADE ORCHESTRA Conducted by WALTER COLLINS
Paxton PR 573 1952
21 Chanson de Matin (Sir Edward Elgar)
THE MELACHRINO STRINGS Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
HMV B 10404 1953
22 With Noble Purpose – Grand March (Trevor Duncan, real name Leonard Charles Trebilco)
THE SYMPHONIA ORCHESTRA Conducted by CURT ANDERSEN (probably the Danish State Radio Orchestra)
Charles Brull/Harmonic CBL 424 1958

The warm reception given to Guild’s first collection focussing on notable British Light Music composers (GLCD5195) has prompted this further selection. Most of the names will be familiar to those whose interests embrace this area of the music scene, although it is hoped that there may be pleasant surprises in between some of the more familiar works.

The honour of providing the opening piece of music goes to Walter ‘Wally’ Stott (1924-2009) with Commonwealth March, one of many works he contributed to the Chappell Recorded Music Library. During his early career he played alto sax with bands such as Geraldo, for whom he also did many arrangements. The positive reaction from fellow musicians, such as Robert Farnon (1917-2005), encouraged Wally to start composing and this dictated the direction in which his future career would develop. In 1972 he became Angela Morley, and was soon recognised internationally as one of Britain’s finest arrangers and film composers. She eventually relocated to the Los Angeles area, where she worked on several big budget movies - one example is the "Star Wars" series assisting John Williams. She also contributed scores to prestigious TV shows such as "Dallas" and "Dynasty", and provided many arrangements for the Boston ‘Pops’ Orchestra. Eighteen of her compositions have previously been included in this series of Guild CDs.

London Fair is a typical piece by another composer and conductor who played a leading role in London’s production music libraries. Charles Williams (born Isaac Cozerbreit, 1893-1978) was involved from the start of the ‘talkies’, and he provided scores for numerous British films. His Dream Of Olwen (on GLCD5192)is still remembered long after the film in which it appeared – "While I Live".

Haydn Wood (1882-1959) was a contemporary of Eric Coates, and their respective careers followed similar paths, beginning with ballads (Haydn Wood’s big success was with Roses of Picardy) leading to their acceptance as leading composers of light music. Coates was particularly successful in writing popular signature tunes, thus bringing him more to the attention of the public at large. But Haydn Wood fully deserves to be recognised as a composer of true worth, with many of his suites containing real substance. No less than 28 of his works have already appeared on Guild CDs ("Joyousness" – GLCD5121 – was entirely devoted to his music), and it is believed that his "Harvest Time Suite" is now receiving its first commercial release on this CD.

Vivian Ellis (1903-1996) was only 24 when he had his first big success in London’s West End with his show ‘Mr. Cinders’, and he devoted the major part of his illustrious career to the musical stage. However he also wrote several pieces of light music which have become ‘classics’ in their own right, the most famous being Coronation Scot (on GLCD5120, and in a Ronald Binge arrangement for Mantovani on GLCD5181) which was initially well-known in Britain through its use as one of the signature tunes for BBC Radio’s "Paul Temple" series in the 1940s. Another familiar piece was Alpine Pastures (GLCD5169) used by the BBC to introduce "My Word". Like some of his contemporaries, Vivian Ellis possessed the precious skill of being able to conjure up a strong melody, although he preferred to leave it to others to orchestrate his creations. It is known that Cecil Milner (1905-1989) was responsible for the famous train sounds in the original version of Coronation Scot, but the Ellis melody in this collection, Muse In Mayfair, had the benefit of a superb orchestration by that master of Light Music, Sidney Torch (1908-1990) who also conducts the Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra.

Torch is also featured again in this collection with his own composition Accent On Waltz. He was born Sidney Torchinsky, of Ukranian parents, at 27 Tottenham Court Road, in London’s West End. He was well-known in Britain for his numerous Parlophone recordings, as well as his long tenure as conductor of the BBC Concert Orchestra in the "Friday Night Is Music Night" BBC radio programme. Prior to the Second World War he was one of Britain’s finest theatre organists. After war service in the Royal Air Force, where he conducted the RAF Concert Orchestra, he made a complete break from playing the organ and concentrated entirely on composing, arranging and conducting light music. Towards the end of his life he was awarded the MBE, but sadly did not seem to enjoy a happy retirement. He had no children, and his wife pre-deceased him. In his will the beneficiary of all his royalties was the MacMillan Cancer Relief Fund.

Stanford Robinson (1904-1984) was born in Leeds and during his early musical career he played the piano in hotel orchestras, until attending the Royal College of Music in London, where he studied conducting under Sir Adrian Boult. From 1924 to 1966 he was on the staff of the BBC: he conducted the BBC Theatre Orchestra from 1932 to 1946 (making some commercial recordings for Decca, two of which are on GLCD5118 and 5134), and was also director of music productions (including opera and operetta) from 1936 to 1946. From 1946 to 1949 he was opera director and associate conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra (during this period he conducted his own composition Nocturne for the Boosey & Hawkes Recorded Music Library), and he served as conductor of the BBC Opera Orchestra as an opera organiser from 1949 until 1952. He undertook various appointments (including numerous broadcasts) in his later BBC career, until his official retirement in 1966, when he went to the southern hemisphere. He continued to conduct various orchestras in Australia and New Zealand during the remainder of 1966 and 1967. In 1968 he was appointed chief conductor of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra. He was awarded the OBE, and eventually returned to England, and died in Brighton.

Reginald Claude McMahon King (1904-1991) was an accomplished pianist, who performed under the baton of Sir Henry Wood at the Proms soon after he completed his studies at London’s Royal Academy. In 1927 he took an orchestra into Swan & Edgar’s restaurant at their Piccadilly Circus store, where they remained until 1939. During this period he also started broadcasting regularly (his number of broadcasts exceeded 1,400), and he made numerous recordings, often featuring his own attractive compositions. Some of his works (including First Waltz on this CD) appeared in the Bosworth Mood Music Library. He made his last broadcast in 1964, but during a long retirement he continued composing until shortly before his death. One of his major works, the concert overture The Immortals, was featured on Guild GLCD5106.

John Ansell (1874-1948) was at one time assistant conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and he was also frequently employed in London theatres. As a composer he may be familiar to music lovers for his overture Plymouth Hoe (which he conducts on Guild GLCD5106) and Windjammer Overture (an edited version is on GLCD5163). But sadly a lot of his quite considerable catalogue of music is now neglected, including several suites – once so popular among concertgoers. One of these was "The Shoe", from which three of the five movements were featured on GLCD5195. In response to a number of requests the full version of his Windjammer Overture is now included in this collection.

The English composer Eric Coates (1886-1957) was widely regarded as ‘the Uncrowned King of Light Music’ during the first half of the last century. His famous "London Suite" was featured in Guild’s first collection devoted entirely to British composers, and now it is the turn of the sequel – "London Again Suite", which Coates composed three years later in 1936. The first movement, Oxford Street is a bustling march depicting London’s famous shopping street; next the elegy Langham Place where the BBC’s Broadcasting House is situated (Coates’ Knightsbridge March crops up, due to its use as the signature tune for radio’s "In Town Tonight"); and finally the ‘valse’ Mayfair. He first recorded this Suite for EMI’s Columbia label with the London Philharmonic Orchestra on 30 April and 1 May 1936, and again for Decca in October 1948 – this time conducting the New Symphony Orchestra (mainly a recording outfit comprising players from the capital’s top symphony orchestras). Barely four years later EMI decided that they, too, should have a modern recording in their catalogue, so Coates was back in Studio One at Abbey Road on 30 September 1952 with the Philharmonic Promenade Orchestra (actually 46 members of the London Philharmonic). This is the version selected for this CD.

Ernest Tomlinson(b.1924) is one of Britain’s most talented composers, working mainly in light music, but also highly regarded for his choral works and brass band pieces. During a very productive career, he has contributed numerous titles to the recorded music libraries of many different publishers, often under the pseudonym ‘Alan Perry’. One of his best-known numbers is Little Serenade, which he developed from a theme he wrote as incidental music for a radio production ‘The Story of Cinderella’ in 1955. His suites of English Folk Dances have also become part of the standard light music repertoire. He is represented on this CD by A Young Man’s Fancy, one of numerous works he contributed to various recorded music libraries. Ernest was awarded the MBE in 2012.

London-born Frederic Curzon (1899-1973) was a charming, unassuming man who devoted his early career to working in the theatre, and like so many of his contemporaries he gradually became involved in providing music for silent films. As well as being a fine pianist and a conductor, he also played the organ, and his first big success as a composer was his "Robin Hood Suite" in 1937. This encouraged him to devote more of his time to writing and broadcasting, and several of his works have become light music ‘standards’, notably March Of The Bowmen (from "Robin Hood Suite") on GLCD5106, and The Boulevardier (GLCD5177). Punchinello has been a popular work among light music admirers ever since it first appeared in 1948.

Ronald Binge (1910-1979) is destined to remain forever remembered as the gifted arranger who designed the ‘cascading strings’ effect for Mantovani, but his true achievements deserve far greater recognition. He was a prolific composer in his own right - Elizabethan Serenade (GLCD5162 & 5184), The Watermill (GLCD5183), Miss Melanie (GLCD5182)and BBC Radio-4’s closing music Sailing By are just four favourites. He also ventured into more serious territory with his Saxophone Concerto in 1956, and his Saturday Symphony a decade later. Like many of his contemporaries, he discovered that the recorded music libraries of London publishers were a useful source of income, and the happy result is that charming pieces like Dance Of The Snowflakes are preserved for us all to enjoy.

Albert William Ketèlbey (1875-1959) was a highly successful composer, who earned today’s equivalent of millions of pounds during the peak of his popularity. Pieces such as In a Monastery Garden, The Phantom Melody, In a Persian Market (GLCD5120) and Bells Across the Meadow (GLCD5108)brought him international fame, no doubt assisted by his enthusiastic participation in the rapidly growing business of producing gramophone records. He was able to spend his later years in comfortable retirement on the peaceful Isle of Wight. The Suite "In A Fairy Realm" was one of many pieces he composed for Bosworth & Co.

Sir Granville Bantock (1868-1946), who was knighted in 1930, has previously been represented by two contrasting works on a Guild CD – Sea Reivers and Oriental Dance (GLCD5140). He is said to have been influenced by the folk music of the Hebrides (off the coast of Scotland) and the music of Richard Wagner, and at one time his work was being compared with Elgar. In fact he succeeded Sir Edward Elgar as professor of music at the University of Birmingham in 1908. In recent years Bantock’s music has enjoyed a modest revival with new recordings of some of his major compositions, notably his Hebridean, Celtic and Pagan symphonies. He was instrumental in the founding of the City of Birmingham Orchestra whose first performance in 1920 was of his Overture: Saul. In later years the London publishers William Paxton championed his work, and the charming Persian Dance was included in their recorded music library.

Most of his major choral and symphonic works were written by Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934) during a relatively short period from 1898 to 1914, but he composed what can accurately be described as ‘light music’ throughout his life. Notable works in this genre include his Bavarian Dances, Chanson de Matin (on this CD) and Salut d’Amour (GLCD5122).

Regular collectors of this Guild series of CDs will already be familiar with the music of Trevor Duncan (real name Leonard Charles Trebilco, 1924-2005). Some 30 titles have now been reissued, and among the best-known are his first success High Heels (on Guild GLCD5124), Grand Vista (GLCD5124) and Panoramic Splendour (GLCD5111). When pressed to reveal his own personal favourite among all his works the reply was not one of his many catchy novelties, but the atmospheric St Boniface Down (on GLCD5157) composed in October 1956; it is named after an area on the south coast of the Isle of Wight. With Noble Purpose reveals how this composer felt at ease with stately marches, and the great Sir Edward might have smiled if he had known how much his influence would still be guiding his fellow composers in the later years of the 20th century.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5204

Salon, Light and Novelty Orchestras

1 Fairy On The Clock (Sherman Myers, real name Montague Ewing)
NEW MAYFAIR DANCE ORCHESTRA Conducted by RAY NOBLE
HMV B 5737 1929
2 La Petite Tonkinoise (My Chin Chin Lou) (Vincent Baptiste Scotto; Henry Marius Christine)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS SALON ORCHESTRA with Whistling by RONALD GOURLAY
Decca F 5450 1935
3 Parade Of The Pirates (John W. Bratton)
INTERNATIONAL NOVELTY ORCHESTRA
Regal Zonophone MR 2689 1938
4 Neapolitan Serenade (Gerhard Winkler)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS SALON ORCHESTRA
HMV BD 733 1939
5 Magic Notes (Fritz Steininger)
RUDY STARITA, xylophone with un-named orchestra
Columbia DB 742 1932
6 Tango Habanera (Jose F. Payan, arr. Fred Hartley)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS SALON ORCHESTRA
HMV BD 331 1936
7 Intermezzo (Souvenir de Vienne) (from the film "Escape To Happiness") (Heinz Provost)
JAY WILBUR’S SERENADERS
Rex 10060-A 1941
8 Secrets Of The Adige – Waltz (Felice Carena)
ORCHESTRA MASCOTTE
Parlophone R 2200 1936
9 Grasshoppers’ Holiday (Herman Bick)
LOUIS VOSS GRAND ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1168 1944
10 Finesse (Bernard Maltin; Anthony Raymond Doll)
NEW MAYFAIR DANCE ORCHESTRA Conducted by RAY NOBLE
HMV B 5737 1929
11 A Birthday Serenade (Paul Lincke)
LONDON PALLADIUM ORCHESTRA Conducted by RICHARD CREAN
HMV B 3566 1930
12 Rose Mousse (Fabrice Gabriel Lemon)
INTERNATIONAL NOVELTY ORCHESTRA
Regal Zonophone MR 3212 1940
13 If You But Knew (Reginald King)
REGINALD KING AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 3408 1930
14 Hiawatha – Cake Walk (Neil Moret)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS NOVELTY ORCHESTRA
Decca F 3854 1934
15 The Wedding Of The Rose (Leon Jessel, arr. Willoughby)
J.H. SQUIRE CELESTE OCTET
Columbia DB 690 1931
16 Fairy Whispers (Rhode)
VICTOR RICARDO AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca F 2870 1932
17 The Cuckoo In The Clock (Walter R. Collins)
INTERNATIONAL NOVELTY QUARTET
Regal Zonophone T 5619 1929
18 The Excuse Me Waltz (Nicholas Brodszky)
REGINALD PURSGLOVE AND HIS MUSIC MAKERS
Regal Zonophone MR 3777 1946
19 Fiddle Dance (Percy Fletcher)
ALBERT SANDLER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia 4854 1928
20 The Dancing Doll (Poupee Valsante) (Eduard Poldini)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS SALON ORCHESTRA
Decca F 3325 1932
21 The Butterfly – Morceau Characteristique (Theo Bendix)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS SALON ORCHESTRA
HMV BD 733 1939
22 Dolls’ Games (Lederer)
VICTOR RICARDO AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca F 2870 1932
23 Sphinx Waltz (Francis Popy)
ORCHESTRA MASCOTTE
Parlophone F 1884 1941
24 Dark Red Roses (Philip Braham)
REGINALD KING AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 3481 1930
25 King Chanticleer (Seymour Brown; Nat D. Ayer)
INTERNATIONAL NOVELTY ORCHESTRA
Regal Zonophone MR 1215 1934

All tracks in mono

Before the large light orchestras became firmly established from the 1940s onwards, many people enjoyed light music performed by smaller groups of musicians. The advent of radio in the 1920s brought many of them national – and sometimes international – fame, and there was a strong demand for gramophone records by the most popular ensembles. At times the boundaries between light music and dance bands became somewhat blurred, especially when leaders such as Jack Hylton included novelty instrumentals in their concert programmes.

Raymond ‘Ray’ Stanley Noble (1903-1978) did not quite fit into the same mould. His early career found him concentrating on recording: in 1927 he won an arranging competition in the magazine Melody Maker, and two years later he was appointed leader of the New Mayfair Dance Orchestra, HMV’s studio band that recorded many hits of the day. But there were the occasional exceptions, as evidenced by Fairy On The Clock and Finesse. Noble also turned to songwriting, resulting in a string of standards such as The Very Thought Of You, The Touch Of Your Lips and Goodnight Sweetheart. In the mid-1930s he took his own band to the USA, where he achieved considerable success: he also developed a new career in films, often acting the part of comic English characters.

The International Novelty Orchestra appeared on many 78s issued in Britain by the Regal Zonophone label – sometimes as a quartet, but more usually as a small orchestra as represented on this CD. For many years discophiles have tried to discover the true identity of the performers, apparently without success. During the 1930s it was not uncommon for well-known bands under contract to major record companies to earn welcome extra cash by ‘moonlighting’ on other labels. Listening carefully to the INO it is possible to discover similarities with other British dance bands, as well as popular ensembles on the continent of Europe. These recordings are generally of a high standard, so the notion that they might be the work of non-professionals doesn’t hold water. Also one would expect that a bandleader producing music of this quality would insist that his name appeared on the record label, unless there was a very strong reason to maintain anonymity. To confuse matters even more, there have been other ‘International Novelty Orchestras’ in Britain and the USA, which appear to have no connection with the Regal Zonophone releases. One name that has been mentioned as a strong contender for making the sides recorded in England is George Scott Wood (1903-1978), but why should he choose to hide his identity when his name appears on other records on the same label? This is a mystery that still needs to be solved.

Alfredo Campoli (1906-1991) was born in Rome where his father was a violin teacher: his mother – the operatic soprano Elvira Celi – had toured with Caruso. The family moved to England in 1911, and young Alfredo made his professional debut as a violinist at London’s Wigmore Hall in 1923. He was soon recognised as a virtuoso on his chosen instrument, and his sublime playing enhanced numerous recordings for the rest of his career. In the early days he toured with the likes of Dame Nellie Melba and Dame Clara Butt, and in addition to playing with symphony orchestras he also performed light music – often with his own salon orchestra, as heard in several tracks on this CD. For many years he was responsible for the distinct violin sound on numerous Victor Silvester Ballroom Orchestra 78s, and post-war he was a regular session musician in the leading light orchestras that made countless LPs in the 1950s and the following years. He has left a vast recorded legacy, including a renowned recording of Elgar’s Violin Concerto in B minor. In1955 he gave the first performance of Sir Arthur Bliss's Violin Concerto, which was written for him. Foreign tours included an appearance at the Carnegie Hall in New York in 1953, and other overseas concerts took him twice to the Soviet Union. Campoli (as he was often simply called) owned two Stradivarius violins, the Baillot-Pommerau of 1694 and the Dragonetti of 1700.

Rudy Starita (1899-1978) was an Italian-American dance band performer in England, who specialised in various percussion instruments, such as the xylophone on this CD. For several years he was a member of his younger brother Ray’s band, but he also performed on a large number of 78s for other leaders, such as the Firman brothers Bert and John, and Harry Hudson.

The English bandleader Jay Wilbur (1898-1970) provided backings for many popular singers during the 1930s. He worked as staff director for Dominion Records, then moved on to Crystalate and their subsidiaries Imperial, Eclipse and Rex. Jay also conducted mood music recordings for Boosey & Hawkes. Like several other musicians, when he found that his style fell out of favour in Britain after the war, he emigrated to continue his career in South Africa where he died in Cape Town.

During the last century, and especially in the 1930s, there was much interest in ‘Wiener Walzer’, those delightful Viennese Waltzes composed by the Strauss family, Joseph Lanner, Carl (Karl) Ziehrer, Franz Lehar and many others. The orchestras of Marek Weber, Dajos Béla, Paul Godwin, Otto Kermbach and a little later Barnabas von Géczy, to mention just a few names, made numerous recordings of this kind of music. But the most popular of all was the Wiener Bohème Orchester.

Among those who have nostalgia for the light music of this period, there is renewed interest into this once very famous ensemble, which from 1930 until the Second World War was responsible for hundreds of recordings that sold in large numbers. It is curious that there is so little known about this extremely popular orchestra, and part of the reason may be that it was familiar through several different names.

‘The Wiener Bohème Orchester’ is the name on the labels of their Odéon 78s issued in Austria, Germany and Switzerland, while in France and Belgium they were called Le Grand Orchestre Bohémien (or Le Grand Orchestre Bohémien de Vienne). In Italy they became Orchestra Tipica Viennese on Odéon and Parlophone, while in Spain and Argentina their assumed identity was Orquesta Los Bohemios Vieneses on Odéon and EMI discs. In the Netherlands their Odéon 78s were credited as the Wiener Bohème Orchester, and on Parlophon the Wiener Walzer Orkest; and on the other side of the world in Japan they were released on Maniac and Nihon-Columbia as Vienna Boheme-Orchestra. ‘Orchestra Mascotte’ is a name coined by Parlophone for records by the Wiener Bohème Orchester in Britain, Australia and New Zealand. With such confusion over its name, it is hardly surprising that the conductors were also rather shadowy figures.

The founder of the Wiener-Bohème Orchester was the well-known conductor of the Berlin State Opera, Dr. Frieder Weissmann (1893-1984), who made a large number of recordings for the Lindström labels, Odeon and Parlophon, in the classical and light classical genre. The Wiener Bohème Orchestra was formed of selected musicians from the Berlin State Opera Orchestra, conducted until 1933 by Dr. Frieder Weissmann. It seems that Weissmann had been asked by the Lindström-company in Berlin to form a special ‘Walzer-Orchester’ purely to make recordings, as there was so much demand for that kind of music.

In 1933 Weissmann had to leave Germany for South America to escape the Nazis, because he was Jewish. He died in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, in 1984. The recording of Sphinx Waltz on this CD, although not released in Britain until 1941, was actually recorded in December 1931 under Weissmann’s baton. The other ‘Orchestra Mascotte’ track included this time, Secrets Of The Adige, was recorded in the autumn of 1935, probably with the new conductor of the WBO, Otto Dobrindt (1886 -1963), Lindström’s house-conductor. Under his leadership the WBO (which only existed to make recordings) grew from strength to strength.

The many fine recordings of the Wiener Bohème-Orchester were made at the Carl Lindström Studios on the Schlesische Strasse in eastern Berlin. This studio had the added bonus of a 2 manual 8 rank Welte organ which WBO's Otto Dobrindt often used most effectively, presumably played by Ernst Fischer (1900-1975, better known as Marcel Palotti, the name he used for many of his solo 78s of that period) on many of WBO's later 78s. The organ was destroyed by allied bombing on 18 March 1945. What remains of the building is currently being used as a garage, its illustrious past long forgotten. The ‘Orchestra Mascotte’ has previously been included in two Guild collections: Amphitryon Waltz (GLCD5190), and Court Ball Dances (GLCD5163).

The orchestras performing on Library Music recordings in London often contained some of the finest session players, and Bosworth was fortunate in being able to employ Louis Voss (1902-1980). He possessed a wide experience as a conductor, starting with silent films then specialising for a while in café and restaurant work providing Gypsy, Hungarian and Viennese music. He formed the Louis Voss Grand Orchestra during the 1930s, which made many records for Bosworths: they also recorded under the pseudonym ‘The West End Celebrity Orchestra’. The leader was the afore-mentioned violinist Alfredo Campoli. Eventually Louis Voss became one of the BBC’s regular broadcasters, and he combined this with theatrical engagements. Towards the end of his long career he was actually the anonymous conductor of the Sydney Thompson Old Time Orchestra.

Richard Crean (1879-1955) became a familiar name in the 1930s through his association with the London Palladium Orchestra, which was probably the best known British theatre orchestra. In recording terms it was also the most prolific, with almost 150 recordings made between 1927 and the early 1940s, many of them conducted by Richard Crean who was in charge from 1930 to 1937. Before joining the London Palladium Orchestra he had travelled widely as Chorus Master with the Thomas Quinlan Opera Company, later accepting a similar position at Covent Garden with Adrian Boult. Then a spell at Ilford Hippodrome in variety led to his appointment in 1930 at the Palladium, which lasted until he formed his own orchestra which he conducted, on and off, for the rest of his life. For a short while in 1941-42 he conducted the newly-formed BBC Midland Light Orchestra, and like Jay Wilbur he was also a contributor to the Boosey & Hawkes Recorded Music Library.

Reginald Claude McMahon King (1904-1991) was an accomplished pianist, who performed under the baton of Sir Henry Wood at the Proms soon after he completed his studies at London’s Royal Academy. In 1927 he took an orchestra into Swan & Edgar’s restaurant at their Piccadilly Circus store, where they remained until 1939. During this period he also started broadcasting regularly (his number of broadcasts exceeded 1,400), and he made numerous recordings, often featuring his own attractive compositions. He made his last broadcast in 1964, but during a long retirement he continued composing until shortly before his death. His tuneful orchestra can be heard playing popular melodies such as Lullaby Of The Leaves (GLCD 5134) and Roses At Dawning (GLCD 5139) on several Guild CDs.

J. H. Squire (1880-1956) is credited with putting the first Light Orchestra on BBC Radio in 1924. Prior to that he had served in the Royal Navy at their School of Music, but left in 1906. It has been said that he introduced ragtime music to London in 1911, and at one time he was Musical Director of six West End Theatres. He was a prolific recording artist, selling more than two million discs. The Celeste Octet is probably the best known ensemble for which he is still remembered in Light Music circles.

Reginald Pursglove (1902-1982) was an accomplished violinist who worked with many of the British dance bands in the 1920s and 1930s. During four decades he was heard regularly on the radio fronting various ensembles such as small groups (his contribution to this CD is a good example) right up to light orchestras which gradually assumed greater prominence as dance bands were heard less frequently on the air. His Albany Players (later renamed the Albany Strings) constantly provided top quality light music, but eventually the BBC’s decision to rely less upon live music meant that the orchestra did not survive the 1960s – a fate that was also to befall so many of Pursglove’s contemporaries.

Albert Sandler (1906-1948) is remembered by many of the older generation in Britain through his BBC broadcasts "Grand Hotel" from 1943 to 1948. The music featured was known as ‘Palm Court’, a style that surprisingly still survived for quite a while after the war, although it had its roots decades earlier – Sandler himself had been musical director of the Grand Hotel, Eastbourne from 1924 to 1928.

David Ades

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Light Music CDs. Some highly recommended releases.

Light Music is ignored by most Record Stores and Radio Stations, yet it is enjoyed by millions of people around the world.

You may know it as Easy Listening or Concert Music ... or maybe Middle-of-the Road. Whatever you happen to call it, Light Music offers relaxing enjoyment at any time of the day or night, and we hope that you will return regularly to this page in the Robert Farnon Society website to keep fully informed on the latest releases.

Releases up to December 2012

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For 2012:

GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5197

Melody Mixture

1 Cab Rank (Dolf van der Linden)
THE SYMPHONIA ORCHESTRA Conducted by LUDO PHILIPP
Charles Brull/Harmonic CBL 409 1957
2 Mr. Lucky (theme from the TV series) (Henry Mancini)
FRANK CORDELL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV 45-POP 755 1960
3 Caravan (Edward Kennedy ‘Duke’ Ellington)
WAL-BERG AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Barclay BB 42 1960
4 Down Under (from the film "The Sundowners") (Adapted and Arranged by Dimitri Tiomkin)
TOMMY REILLY, Harmonica with WALLY STOTT AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Philips PB 1094 1960
5 Gloria’s Theme from "Butterfield 8" (Bronislau Kaper; Hal David)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM 45-MGM 1110 1960
6 Bilbao-Song (from "Happy End") (Kurt Weill; Bertolt Brecht)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
CBS 4-41978 1961
7 With Tongue In Cheek (Trevor Duncan, real name Leonard Trebilco)
THE SYMPHONIA ORCHESTRA Conducted by CURT ANDERSEN
Charles Brull/Harmonic CBL 451 1960
8 Spring Collection (Peter Hope)
THE CRAWFORD LIGHT ORCHESTRA
Josef Weinberger JW 277 1961
9 Scurry For Strings (Lester B. Hart)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘The Harmonic Orchestra Conducted by David Johnson’ on disc label)
Charles Brull/Harmonic CBL331 1952
10 Spinette (Murray Newman, arr. Bruce Campbell)
BRUCE CAMPBELL AND HIS ORCHESTRA (‘Coronet Orchestra’ on disc label)
MGM E 3167 1955
11 The Cool Caballero (Bernie Wayne, real name Bernard Weitzner)
BERNIE WAYNE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
ABC Paramount ABC 182 1957
12 Pleasure Island (Ron Goodwin)
RON GOODWIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Parlophone 45-R4787 1961
13 Alma Mia (Fred Hartley)
FRED HARTLEY AND HIS MUSIC
Chappell C 644 1959
14 I Aim At The Stars (theme from the film) (Laurie Johnson)
LAURIE JOHNSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia 45-DB 4546 1960
15 Dear Old Pals (Angela Morley)
TELECAST ORCHESTRA Conducted by ANGELA MORLEY (as ‘Walter Stott’)
Chappell C 718 1961
16 Leaps And Bounds (Cyril Watters)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘Paul Franklin’ on disc label)
Paxton PR 725 1960
17 Tango Of The Flowers (Juan Rosa)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Brunswick LAT 8165 1957
18 Peacock In Piccadilly (Wilfred Burns, real name Bernard Wilfred Harris)
LOUIS VOSS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1239 1950
19 Continental Highways (Harold Geller)
GROUP-FORTY ORCHESTRA Conducted by LAURIE JOHNSON
KPM Music KPM 050B 1960
20 Galop On Strings (Tom Wyler, real name Toni Leutwiler)
THE HARMONIC STRINGS Conducted by TOM WYLER
Charles Brull/Harmonic CBL330 1952
21 Guaracha (No. 3 of Latin American Symphonette) (Morton Gould)
SIDNEY TORCH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 3965 1947
22 Brandy Snaps (Peter Yorke)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘The Harmonic Orchestra Conducted by David Johnson’ on disc label)
Charles Brull/Harmonic CBL 351 1954
23 Chicken Noodle (Peter Dennis, real name Dennis Alfred Berry)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘Paul Franklin’ on disc label)
Paxton PR 661 1956
24 Route Nationale (Roger Roger)
THE PARIS STUDIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by PHILIPPE PARES
Synchro FM 236 1959
25 On Stage (Billy Mack, real names Walter Collins; William MacDonnell)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as ‘Paul Franklin’ on disc label)
Paxton PR 614 1954

Stereo: tracks 3 & 6; rest in mono

Unlike many of the CDs in this "Golden Age of Light Music" series, this collection does not have a special theme or concept. It is simply a varied mixture of melodies featuring works by composers who are well-known to light music aficionados, plus a good helping of pieces by ‘giants’ of the music world, such as Henry Mancini, Duke Ellington and Ron Goodwin. Most of these numbers have been considered for recent collections, but have been temporarily ‘shelved’ for various reasons – usually because the CDs were already full. But they don’t deserve to be forgotten, because they all possess their own special charms.

The Dutch maestro Dolf van der Linden conducts six tracks in this collection, but not the opening number which is his own composition. Cab Rank finds him in a typical bright, inventive style that became his trademark: you can never be sure at the outset how his works will develop, and there are usually pleasant surprises in store when the middle theme arrives. He took great care with the construction of his pieces, and in view of his tremendous contribution to light music in general it is not surprising that this is the fourteenth time that one of his compositions has been chosen for a Guild CD.

Dolf van der Linden (real name David Gysbert van der Linden, 1915-1999) was the leading figure on the light music scene in the Netherlands from the 1940s until the 1980s. As well as broadcasting frequently with his Metropole Orchestra, he conducted numerous recordings for the background music libraries of major music publishers. He also made transcription recordings for Dutch radio and other companies. His commercial recordings (especially for the American market) were often labelled as ‘Van Lynn’ or ‘Daniel De Carlo’. His big presence on the light music scene is partly explained by the action of the British Musicians’ Union at the end of the 1940s, which banned the major London publishers from employing British musicians to make new recordings for their Mood Music Libraries. Instead of giving in to the Union’s demands, the publishers simply crossed the English Channel into Europe, where they utilised the services of the top broadcasting orchestras in various countries. Dolf van der Linden, based in Hilversum, was engaged to conduct hundreds of pieces (often under pseudonyms), particularly for Paxton, Boosey & Hawkes and Charles Brull/Harmonic – as well as some others. These performances are of a consistently high quality, and the examples on this CD include works by top writers such as Cyril Watters, Peter Yorke and Peter Dennis.

Although not as well-known as most of the other composers on this CD, Henry Cyril Watters (1907-1984) was highly respected by music publishers, with his work readily accepted for its unfailing high standards. At times he was employed as a staff arranger by Boosey & Hawkes and Chappell, and he generously devoted some of his energies in running the Light Music Society for the benefit of his fellow musicians. Peter Yorke (1902-1966) is a regular contributor to this series of CDs, as composer, arranger and conductor. After playing piano in British Dance Bands of the 1920s and 1930s, he graduated to arranging for Louis Levy before eventually forming his own concert orchestra for recording and broadcasting. ‘Peter Dennis’ hides the true identity of Dennis Alfred Berry (1921-1994), who also composed (sometimes in collaboration with others) under names such as Frank Sterling, Charles Kenbury and Michael Rodney. For part of the 1950s he ran the Paxton library, but also contributed titles to other publishers.

Henry Mancini (born Enrico Nicola Mancini, 1924-1994) hailed from Cleveland, Ohio, and in 1952 he was fortunate in gaining a job at Universal Pictures in Hollywood. During a six-year contract he worked on around 100 films, one of his early assignments being "The Glenn Miller Story" (1953). By 1958 his talents were widely recognised within the music business, and thereafter he was offered numerous commissions for films, recordings and television. Mr Lucky first reached US TV screens in October 1959, and ran for 34 episodes. Henry Mancini provided the smooth theme music, and the choice for this CD is the version conducted by Frank Cordell (1918-1980), a top British arranger/conductor who also contributed memorable scores to films such as "The Captain’s Table" (1959), "Flight From Ashiya" (1964), "Khartoum" (1966), "Mosquito Squadron" (1969), "Ring Of Bright Water" (1969), "Hell Boats" (1970), "Cromwell" (1970) – he was nominated for an Oscar, "Trial By Combat" (1976) and "God Told Me To" (1976).

When music-lovers discuss the ‘Great American Songwriters’ there is one name that occasionally gets missed: Edward Kennedy ‘Duke’ Ellington (1899-1974). People seem to remember that he fronted a great band, playing what many called ‘Orchestral Jazz’, yet the fact that he composed over 1,000 works frequently doesn’t register. But his songs became an essential part of the 20th Century music scene, and Caravan illustrates that he was a genius, beyond doubt. Our version features the French orchestra conducted by Wal-Berg (born Voldemar Rosenberg, 1910-1994) who at one time was closely associated with French recordings by Marlene Dietrich.

The Canadian Tommy Reilly (1919-2000) was widely regarded as the world’s leading classical harmonica player, who seemed equally at home performing serious works (often composed specially for him), alongside lighter works such as Down Under. He is accompanied by the Wally Stott Orchestra, from the time before Wally became Angela Morley (1924-2009). Later we hear one of Wally’s comedy numbers Dear Old Pals, which features a prominent part for the bassoon - the instrument which also played a big role in Wally’s earlier composition Mock Turtles (on GLCD5101).

The 1960 film "Butterfield 8" starred Elizabeth Taylor (1932-2011) as Gloria Wandrous, and it is hardly surprising that veteran Hollywood composer Bronislau Kaper (1902-1983) composed a suitably romantic theme for her. The version of Gloria by London-born David Rose (1910-1990) brings out all the glamour and anguish of the screenplay.

Another Guild favourite is Toronto-born Percy Faith (1908-1976) who moved permanently to the USA in 1940 where he quickly established himself through radio and recordings. From the 1950s onwards his fame spread internationally, due to the great success of his numerous long playing albums. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Faith arranged all his own material, and he had a particular love of music with a tropical feel, which certainly comes through in Bilbao-Song.

Regular collectors of this Guild series of CDs will already be familiar with the music of Trevor Duncan (real name Leonard Charles Trebilco, 1924-2005). Almost 30 of his original compositions have now been reissued, and among the best-known are his first success High Heels (on Guild GLCD 5124), Grand Vista (GLCD 5124) and Panoramic Splendour (GLCD5111). He had the ability to write in many different styles, which no doubt endeared him to the publishers of mood music who needed to have music readily available to cover any kind of situation. With Tongue In Cheek probably expresses Trevor’s own feelings about some of the music he wrote.

The English composer Peter Hope (b. 1930) makes his Guild debut with Spring Collection, one of many attractive pieces he has contributed to publishers’ recorded music libraries over the years. Although his name may be unfamiliar to many, the same cannot be said of his music. During the 1950s, when light music formed a significant part of BBC Radio’s schedules, his compositions and arrangements were heard on an almost daily basis. His title music for BBC Television News was used until 1980. More recently new recordings have been made of his original works, as a new generation of musicians and conductors becomes aware of his major contribution to the genre of light music.

Bruce Campbell was one of several writers who owed much to his association with Robert Farnon. He was a fellow Canadian, who actually came to Britain some years before Farnon, and played trombone with various top British bands during the 1930s. Campbell assisted Farnon on his post-war BBC radio shows, and eventually became a frequent contributor to various mood music libraries. Spinette comes from a rare LP that Campbell recorded in Britain for the American market.

The 1950s seems to have been a very busy period for the American Bernie Wayne (born Bernard Weitzner 1919-1993), composer of The Cool Caballero. In the USA he is best known for his "Miss America" Beauty Pageant theme, and the hit song Blue Velvet. His string of instrumental successes included Vanessa (GLCD5189), Port-au-Prince (GLCD5130) and Veradero (GLCD5111).

Ronald (Ron) Alfred Goodwin (1925-2003) was a brilliant British composer, arranger and conductor, who rose to prominence in Britain during the 1950s through a series of recordings that revealed a fresh and vibrant style of light music that greatly appealed to the public. His ability to arrange and compose soon resulted in commissions to work in films, and popular movies like "633 Squadron" (1964), "Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines" (1965) and Alfred Hitchcock’s "Frenzy" (1972) introduced him to a worldwide audience. Pleasure Island joins ten of his original works already featured in this series.

Fred Hartley (1905-1980) was a familiar name in British broadcasting for many years, having made his first appearance on the BBC as a solo pianist as early as 1925. He was then employed as an accompanist, and founded his famous Novelty Quintet in 1931. In 1946 he was appointed the BBC’s Head of Light Music. Five of his own compositions have already been featured on Guild CDs, and towards the end of the 1950s he contributed several of his own pieces to the Chappell Recorded Music Library, from which the choice this time is Alma Mia. This number will probably strike a familiar chord among people in Britain, because it is the kind of charming novelty which he featured so often in his radio programmes.

Laurie Johnson (b.1927) has been a leading figure on the British entertainment scene for over 50 years. A gifted arranger and composer, Laurie has contributed to films, musical theatre, radio, television and records, with his music used in many well-known productions such as "The Avengers" and "The Professionals". I Aim At The Stars comes from the time when record companies were still willing to make orchestral singles by well-known conductors.

Bernard Wilfred Harris, better known as ‘Wilfred Burns’ (1917-1990) was a prolific composer of mood music who has over 200 titles to his credit. After service during the Second World War he worked at Elstree studios before eventually becoming a freelance film composer and musical director. His first of over twenty films was around 1949, with his final score in the 1970s. His best-known was probably the large screen version of the popular television series "Dad’s Army" in 1971. Peacock In Piccadilly is one of his many pieces accepted by various London publishers, and it is his seventh contribution to a Guild CD.

Violinist Harold (Harry) Geller (1916-2005) was born in Sydney, Australia, but for most of his career he was based in London. He was a frequent broadcaster with his orchestra in BBC programmes such as "Morning Music" and "Music While You Work", but his commercial recordings were comparatively rare. He composed Continental Highways for the KPM Record Music Library. Towards the end of the 1970s work in Britain had dried up, so he moved to the USA where he continued to compose and teach playing the violin and the technique of conducting.

As ‘Tom Wyler’, the Swiss violinist and composer Toni Leutwiler (1923-2009) became known outside his homeland, partly due to the success of his charming composition Lovely Day (on GLCD5183). His music was in demand from many broadcasting stations, and he was reported to have created over 2,000 arrangements. Galop On Strings is another fine example of his mastery of string writing.

Sidney Torch, MBE (born Sidney Torchinsky 1908-1990) is well-known in Britain for his numerous Parlophone recordings, as well as his long tenure as conductor of the BBC Concert Orchestra in the "Friday Night Is Music Night" BBC radio programme. Guaracha is one of the famous ‘Latin American Symphonettes’ by Morton Gould (1913-1996), rightly regarded as one of the leading American composers of the last century.

Roger Roger (1911-1995) was a leading figure on the French music scene for many years, and his fine compositions and arrangements also won him many admirers internationally. Route Nationale is his sixteenth composition to be made available to a wider audience on a Guild CD.

The final track features On Stage, a piece co-composed by Walter R. Collins, who is remembered for his days as the distinguished Musical Director of the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill-on-Sea, and also for conducting the London Promenade Orchestra for the Paxton Recorded Music Library during the 1940s. It provides a typical ‘show business’ ending to a varied collection of light music that hopefully includes something for everyone.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5198

Light Music While You Work – Volume 4

1 Cavalcade Of Martial Songs (arr. Horatio Nicholls) : The King’s Horses (Noel Gay); The Toy-Town Artillery (Everett Lynton); The Tin-Can Fusiliers (Horatio Nicholls); When The Guards Are On Parade (Horatio Nicholls); There’s Something About A Soldier (Noel Gay); When A Soldier’s On Parade (Horatio Nicholls); When The Band Goes Marching By (Horatio Nicholls); The Toy Drum Major (Horatio Nicholls).
HARRY FRYER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 70 1943
2 Roses From The South (Johann Strauss, Jr.)
RONNIE MUNRO AND HIS WALTZ ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 358 1946
3 Lonesome And Sorry (Benny Davis; Con Conrad)
REGINALD PURSGLOVE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 123 1944
4 Carmen – Rhythmic Paraphrase (Georges Bizet, arr. Arthur Lange)
HARRY FRYER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 131 1944
5 Dainty Miss (Bernard Barnes)
HAROLD COLLINS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 81 1943
6 Love Dance – Intermezzo (from "Madame Sherry") (Karl Hoschna)
DAVID JAVA AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 175 1944
7 Tick Of The Clock (James Perry)
HARRY DAVIDSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 349 1945
8 Voices Of Spring (Johann Strauss, Jr.)
RONNIE MUNRO AND HIS WALTZ ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 341 1945
9 Light And Shade (Wynford Reynolds as ‘Hugh Raeburn’)
HAROLD COLLINS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 189 1944
10 At The Dance (from "Summer Days" Suite) (Eric Coates)
RICHARD CREAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 164 1944
11 In A Country Lane (from "Summer Days" Suite) (Eric Coates)
RICHARD CREAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 164 1944
12 Knuckledust (George Blackmore)
HAROLD COLLINS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 190 1944
13 Dreaming (Archibald Joyce)
HAROLD COLLINS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 80 1943
14 La Cinquantaine (Gabriel Marie)
RICHARD CREAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 286 1945
15 Faust - Rhythmic Paraphrase (Charles Gounod, arr. Arthur Lange)
HARRY FRYER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 64 1943
16 Tesoro Mio (Ernesto Becucci)
RONNIE MUNRO AND HIS WALTZ ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 400 1946
17 Old Faithful (Abe Holzmann)
HARRY DAVIDSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 287 1945
18 Vision Of Salome (Archibald Joyce)
HARRY DAVIDSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 398 1945
19 Heyken’s Serenade No. 2 (Jonny Heykens)
DAVID JAVA AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 176 1944
20 Les Sirenes (Emile Waldteufel)
RONNIE MUNRO AND HIS SCOTTISH VARIETY ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 219 1944
21 Waldmere (Frank Hoyt Losey)
LONDON COLISEUM ORCHESTRA Conducted by REGINALD BURSTON
Decca Music While You Work MW 374 1946
22 Danube Waves (Iosif Ivanovici)
RONNIE MUNRO AND HIS SCOTTISH VARIETY ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 252 1945
23 Amina - Intermezzo (Paul Lincke)
HARRY DAVIDSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 259 1945
24 Artists Life (Johann Strauss, Jr.)
RONNIE MUNRO AND HIS WALTZ ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 393 1946
25 Yankee Grit (Abe Holzmann)
HARRY DAVIDSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 287 1945

All tracks mono

This is the fourth and final delve into the riches contained in the Decca ‘Music While You Work’ series of 78rpm records, which first appeared in 1942. The last ones were released in January 1947, concluding a special wartime project that had seen over 400 discs produced specifically for relaying over public address systems in factories – the intention being to boost the morale of the workers.

The story behind these records, which were prompted by the BBC radio series of the same name, has been recalled in the notes accompanying the previous three CDs in this series – on GLCD5128, 5137 and 5186. The emphasis in these Guild CDs has been on the Light Music contained on these records, but these were just part of a wide variety of popular music that also included recordings by dance bands, jazz and various instrumental ensembles.

The series was quickly deleted, and throughout the existence of the label Decca publicity had been sketchy, to say the least. The record buying public was often unaware of what was available, so consequently some of the titles must be quite rare. Some of the later 78s were recorded using Decca’s revolutionary ‘ffrr’ (full frequency range recording) process which remained a closely guarded secret for some while since it had originally been developed to assist the war effort, and the improved sound quality of several of the later tracks on this CD is evidence of this.

The orchestras chosen for these recordings would have been familiar to the public at the time. Foremost among these is Harry Fryer (1896-1946) and his Orchestra. Like so many musicians of his era, he found work playing for silent films and gradually progressed to conducting at London theatres and leading venues in and around the capital. He was a regular broadcaster, both before the war and later frequently on radio in "Music While You Work". The London publishers Boosey & Hawkes contracted Fryer in 1941 to conduct for their Recorded Music Library. By the end of the war he had become a household name and there seems little doubt that, had it not been for his death in 1946 aged only 50, his talents would have been much in demand during the post-war years.

Ronald (Ronnie) George Munro (1897-1989) started his career playing piano in various clubs and bands in London before eventually working regularly with EMI – particularly the HMV ‘house’ orchestra The New Mayfair Orchestra. He contributed numerous arrangements for top recording bands such as Jack Hylton, Lew Stone, Percival Mackey, Ambrose and Henry Hall. In 1940 he was appointed conductor of the BBC’s newly-formed Scottish Variety Orchestra, and Les Sirenes is typical of the kind of music for which they became known. After a further spell with a dance band after the war, he formed his light orchestra for radio in the fifties, concluding his BBC career with a sextet which he led between 1962 and 1967. When radio broadcasts dried up, he emigrated to South Africa, where he reformed his orchestra, subsequently becoming Head of Light Music for the South African Broadcasting Corporation.

Reginald Pursglove (1902-1982) was an accomplished violinist who worked with many of the British dance bands in the 1920s and 1930s. During four decades he was heard regularly on the radio fronting various ensembles such as small groups (his contribution to this CD is a good example) right up to light orchestras which gradually assumed greater prominence as dance bands were heard less frequently on the air. His Albany Players (later renamed the Albany Strings) constantly provided top quality light music, but eventually the BBC’s decision to rely less upon live music meant that the orchestra did not survive the 1960s – a fate that was to befall so many of Pursglove’s contemporaries.

Harold Collins (c.1900 - c.1971) arold Collins, David Java

at one time was MD at the London Coliseum, although he also held positions at various provincial theatres. Originally a pianist, it seems he gave his first broadcast from Plymouth in 1936 where he was resident conductor at the Palace Theatre, and was hired by the BBC for "Music While You Work" soon after the programme was launched. In total he appeared in 227 programmes with his Orchestra, and he also made a good number of records for Decca’s MWYW series, usually with a smaller ensemble in a style that suited the light repertoire that was his speciality – his four numbers in this collection are ideal examples. In later years he was heard in BBC shows "Morning Music" and "Melody On The Move", and through his work with Norman Wisdom he appeared on ITV’s top Sunday evening shows from the London Palladium and the Prince of Wales Theatre.

It seems that David Java recorded only four titles for Decca’s MWYW series, and his career is poorly documented. In 1938 he played violin alongside Sidney Sax on several Victor Silvester recordings for Parlophone, and again on some Columbia recordings in 1941 when Oscar Grasso, Alfredo Campoli, Reginald Kilbey and Eugene Pini were among the distinguished violin players whom Silvester employed. After the war David Java supplied orchestras for Lyons’ Corner House restaurant and presumably other similar venues.

Harry Davidson (1892-1967) enjoyed two successful, and different, careers before and following the Second World War. After various engagements around London and the north-east of England spanning the years 1914 to 1929, he finally secured the highly prestigious appointment as organist at the newly built Commodore Theatre at Hammersmith in London. The Commodore had a fine 18-piece orchestra conducted by Joseph Muscant (1899-1983) and by the early 1930s it had acquired a loyal national following for its regular broadcasts. After five years Muscant left to take over the Troxy Broadcasting Orchestra and, in July 1934, Harry Davidson stepped into his shoes. (Recordings by both the Commodore and Troxy orchestras may be found on previous Guild Light Music CDs). Although the Commodore orchestra was disbanded during the war, Davidson managed to keep many of his superb musicians together and soon he was broadcasting regularly, notching up no less than 109 editions of "Music While You Work" between 1940 and 1946. In November 1943 his BBC radio series "Those Were The Days" appeared for the first time, providing listeners at home with a regular helping of melodious old-time dance music. It became a permanent fixture in the schedules with Harry in charge until ill-health forced him to retire in November 1965. It is also appropriate to mention that he was an extremely prolific recording artist: during the 1950s 78s by his orchestra often occupied almost four pages in EMI Columbia’s annual catalogues.

Richard Crean (1879-1955) became a familiar name in the 1930s through his association with the London Palladium Orchestra, which was probably the best known British theatre orchestra at the time. In recording terms it was also the most prolific, with almost 150 recordings made between 1927 and the early 1940s, many of them conducted by Richard Crean who was in charge from 1930 to 1937. Before joining the London Palladium Orchestra he had travelled widely as Chorus Master with the Thomas Quinlan Opera Company, before accepting a similar position at Covent Garden with Adrian Boult. Then a spell at Ilford Hippodrome in variety led to his appointment in 1930 at the Palladium, which lasted until he formed his own orchestra which he conducted, on and off, for the rest of his life. For a short while in 1941-42 he conducted the newly-formed BBC Midland Light Orchestra, and like Harry Fryer he was also a contributor to the Boosey & Hawkes Recorded Music Library.

Reginald Bradshaw Burston (1897-1968) was an experienced musical director who was regularly employed in various London theatres ranging from D’Oyly Carte Opera to prestigious Noel Coward productions and lavish post-war American musicals. In the mid-1930s he conducted the BBC Midland Orchestra, then in 1936 he took over the baton of the BBC Revue Orchestra for several years. Like Harold Collins, Burston also served as MD at the London Coliseum (also known as the Coliseum Theatre). It was built in St. Martin’s Lane by the famous theatre impresario and architect, Oswald Stoll, and it opened for its first performance on 24 December 1904. Since then it has undergone changes of name, various refurbishments and different kinds of productions, ranging from variety and operetta to ballet and opera – it is now the home of English National Opera.

Among the composers whose work is featured in this collection, there are several who deserve special mention. The opening track is, in essence, a tribute to Horatio Nicholls, both as composer and arranger. But ‘Nicholls’ was a pseudonym, hiding the true identity of Leicester-born Lawrence Wright (1888-1964). He was a successful publisher, as well as songwriter (over 600 titles) – his most famous being Among My Souvenirs which he wrote in 1927 with Edgar Leslie. The previous year he had launched the leading British musical magazine Melody Maker. In 1962 he received an Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Popular Music.

There are a number of discs in Decca’s MWYW series which contain what might be called ‘pure’ light music. The two numbers from the suite "Summer Days" by Eric Coates (1886-1957) tend to confirm that the wartime public was receptive to orchestral music – probably as a result of hearing so much of it regularly on the radio. Of course Coates was something of a musical celebrity by the end of the 1930s, with many of his catchy melodies being used as signature tunes. The BBC chose his Calling All Workers as the theme for ‘"Music While You Work", and this was included in full on the first CD in this series (GLCD5128) played by the Tivoli Concert Hall Orchestra. Excerpts from Coates’ own recording were used on the second volume (GLCD5137). Surprisingly Decca did not record Calling All Workers as a full track, although it did open and close a selection by The Victory Band.

The medleys of music from "Carmen" and "Faust" are the work of the American bandleader Arthur Lange (1889-1956). He seems to have been a frequent visitor to the recording studios, especially during the 1920s, during which period of his career he made numerous ‘stock’ orchestrations which were used by many bands at the time. He composed music for over 120 films and, although nominated four times, he did not win any Oscars.

Another American composer (who was a contemporary of Sousa) was Abraham Holzmann (1874-1939) whose greatest march success was Blaze Away, composed in 1901. In this collection he is represented with two pieces – Old Faithful and Yankee Grit - both given fine performances by Harry Davidson’s Orchestra. Abe earned his living mainly from Tin Pan Alley where he wrote and arranged popular songs for publishers such as Leo Feist. Today he is fondly remembered by lovers of ragtime, but he also penned many marches, waltzes and other pieces of light music.

The man widely credited for devising "Music While You Work" is represented with his composition Light And Shade, which he wrote under the pseudonym ‘Hugh Raeburn’. Considering his musical background, it is likely that Wynford Hubert Reynolds (1899-1958) had little problem in persuading the BBC that he had the necessary knowledge to launch "Music While You Work". He was already on the staff of the BBC as a producer, although he was also an experienced performer. He was born in Ebbw Vale, Wales, and his early musical training at the Royal Academy of Music concentrated on the violin, viola and composition. Like many of his fellow musicians, he provided music for silent films, and eventually joined the Queen’s Hall Orchestra under its illustrious conductor (and founder of London’s Promenade Concerts) Sir Henry Wood.

Reynolds became involved with the early days of radio in the 1920s, and it wasn’t long before he formed his own orchestra for concerts (including engagements at seaside venues) and broadcasts. In 1941 the BBC gave him the important-sounding title ‘Music While You Work Organiser’ but, due to the strict rules imposed by the Corporation on its own employees, this prevented him from appearing with his orchestra in the programmes. He left this position in 1944, and went back to performing on radio, not only in "Music While You Work" but also, later, in popular shows such as "Bright and Early" and "Morning Music". Happily the recordings he made for Decca’s MWYW series are evidence of the high quality of his music, although his influence extended far beyond those 78s bearing his own orchestra’s name: he produced the majority of around 420 discs that were issued before the series ended with the final releases in January 1947.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5199

Three Great American Light Orchestras

PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
All arrangements by Percy Faith
1 Somewhere ("West Side Story") (Stephen Sondheim; Leonard Bernstein)
Columbia GS7 (Columbia Record Club 5th Anniversary Album) 1960
2 Petite (Mon Petite Monde a Moi) (David E. Coleman; Rudi Revil)
Columbia 4-40390 1954
3 The Last Dance (Percy Faith)
Columbia 4-40826 1956
4 My Shawl (Stanley Adams; Xavier Cugat)
Columbia 4-39322 1950
5 La Mer (Beyond The Sea) (Charles Trenet) (The Percy Faith Strings)
Columbia CS 8124 1959
6 Mon Oncle (Theme from the film) (Franck Barcellini)
Columbia CS 8214 1960
7 Italian Street Song (from "Naughty Marietta") (Victor Herbert)
Columbia C2S 801 1958
8 Go-Go-Po-Go (Percy Faith)
Columbia CS 8360 1961

DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
All arrangements by David Rose

9 California Melodies (David Rose)
MGM C 788 1959
10 I’ve Got The World On A String (from "Cotton Club Parade") (Harold Arlen; Ted Koehler)
MGM C 754 1954
11 The Happy Bow (David Rose)
MGM SE 3895 1961
12 Lonesome On Main Street (David Rose)
MGM E 3067 1953
13 The Mask Waltz (David Rose) featuring RAY TURNER, piano
MGM E 3067 1953
14 Flavia (David Rose)
MGM C 788 1959
15 Ponderosa (from the TV series "Bonanza") (David Rose)
MGM SE 3960 1961
16 It’s A Most Unusual Day (From the film "A Date With Judy") (Jimmy McHugh; Harold Adamson)
MGM SE 3895 1961

PAUL WESTON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
All arrangements by Paul Weston
17 Whispers In The Dark (Leo Robin; Frederick Hollander)
Columbia CL 572 1954
18 My Darling, My Darling (from "Where’s Charley?") (Frank Loesser)
Capitol ST 1563 1961
19 Day By Day (Paul Weston; Sammy Cahn; Axel Stordahl)
Columbia CL 574 1954
20 Soon (Ira Gershwin; George Gershwin)
Columbia CL 574 1954
21 There Will Never Be Another You (from the film "Iceland") (Harry Warren; Mack Gordon) featuring PAUL WESTON, piano
Capitol ST 1223 1959
22 When April Comes Again (Paul Weston; Doris Schaefer)
Capitol ST 1192 1959
23 Folks Who Live On The Hill (from "High, Wide and Handsome") (Jerome Kern)
Columbia CS 8050 1958
24 Who (from the show "Sunny") (Jerome Kern)
Columbia CS 8049 1958

BONUS TRACK

25 Paul Weston discussing his Jerome Kern recordings in 1958 for a special promotional feature by Columbia Records.

Stereo: tracks 1, 5-8, 11, 15, 16, 18, 21-24; rest in mono.

PERCY FAITH

 Percy Faith was born in Toronto, Canada, on 7 April 1908, the oldest of eight children. As a child he learned the violin and piano, and originally he expected that he would pursue his music career as a concert pianist. But he injured his hands in a fire, which forced him to turn instead to composing, arranging and conducting.

During the 1930s he was regularly heard in live music broadcasts on Canadian radio, and his programme "Music By Faith" was carried by the Mutual network in the USA, prompting offers of work south of the border. He eventually succumbed in 1940 and moved to Chicago, leaving Robert Farnon (previously his lead trumpeter) to conduct his Canadian orchestra. He became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1945.

Initially Faith concentrated on broadcasting, although he did make some commercial recordings for the Majestic, Decca and RCA labels, several of which have featured on other Guild CDs. However, many other recordings, mainly derived from his radio programmes, were issued by Voice Of America on transcription discs, but these were not available to the general public. Some of them may now be heard on Guild GLCD5174 and GLCD5181. Things were to change dramatically when he signed a Columbia (CBS) contract in 1950 to provide backings for the label’s top singers which also allowed him to begin a regular programme of recording singles and albums of his own.

He soon discovered that his singles sold well and the new long playing records needed the kind of popular instrumental sounds that had formed the basis of his broadcasts for so many years. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Faith arranged all his own material, and his exciting and vibrant scores made his work stand out among the rest. He accompanied many of Columbia’s contract singers, and even contributed the odd popular song, such as My Heart Cries For You for Guy Mitchell. One of his best-selling singles was Theme from "A Summer Place" (on Guild GLCD5165) which is still frequently heard today. It won the Grammy Award for ‘Record Of The Year’ in 1961. A second Grammy followed in 1969 for his album Love Theme from "Romeo and Juliet".

Percy Faith’s albums usually concentrated on the rich source of popular music of the time, which was available in abundance in musicals on Broadway and Hollywood films. But he also had a penchant for the exotic sounds of Latin-American music, and some of his best-selling collections featured his distinctive arrangements of the music of Mexico and Brazil. Like his fellow orchestra leaders, he had to acknowledge the changing tastes in popular music during the 1960s, and for a while he managed to attract a younger generation of listeners with albums devoted to lush orchestral arrangements of current song successes.

Although his recording career was always paramount, his composing and arranging abilities naturally attracted offers of work elsewhere. He composed the popular theme music for the television series "The Virginian", screened by NBC in the US and also shown in many countries around the world. In Hollywood he received an Academy Award nomination for his arrangements of the songs in the Doris Day film "Love Me Or Leave Me".

But today it is his numerous albums that have created a resurgence of interest in his work, thanks to their reissue on CD. Faith was always busy, whether working in the recording studios, radio, television or films. He died at Encino, California, on 9 February 1976, aged 67. 

DAVID ROSE

 David Rose tends to be remembered today for two great instrumentals – Holiday For Strings (his own extended version is on Guild GLCD5189) and The Stripper (1962). But he achieved far more than that during his long and illustrious career. He was born in London, England on 15 June 1910, and the family moved to the USA when he was just four-years-old.

After leaving the Chicago College of Music at the age of 16, he joined Ted Fio Rito's dance band, and three years later became a pianist/arranger/conductor for NBC Radio. He moved to Hollywood, and in 1938 formed his own orchestra for the Mutual Broadcasting System, and featured on the programme "California Melodies". His own theme for this series is the first item in his segment of this collection.

Rose began working in movies in 1941 and is credited with scoring 36 films. In 1943 he had a big hit with his own composition Holiday For Strings which firmly launched him as a light music composer in the eyes of the public. Other catchy novelties soon followed, such as Dance Of The Spanish Onion (on GLCD5101) and Manhattan Square Dance (GLCD5102). During military service in World War II Rose was conductor for the Army-Air Force morale-boosting stage musical "Winged Victory", which was filmed in 1944. By the late '40s he was a regular on Red Skelton's radio show, moving with him into television. He later wrote scores and themes for over 20 television series and won Emmy awards for his 14 year stint on "Bonanza", 10 years with "Little House On The Prairie" and his work on three much-acclaimed Fred Astaire specials.

After chart success with Calypso Melody in 1957, Rose had a worldwide smash hit in 1962 with another of his own tunes, a humorous and satirical piece called The Stripper. He had actually composed this four years previously for a television show called "Burlesque", and it gathered dust on his record company’s shelves until they needed a ‘B’ side for Ebb Tide. A Los Angeles disc jockey picked it up, and the rest – as they say – is musical history. It spawned a complete album - "The Stripper and Other Fun Songs for the Family", one of the 50 or so LPs he recorded, including the best-selling "Like Young" and "Like Blue", made with André Previn. He won numerous Emmy and Grammy awards and six gold records.

Apart from his record, film and television work, Rose was guest conductor with several symphony orchestras. His Concerto For Flute And Orchestra was first played by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and later by the Boston Pops. Towards the end of his life his enduring passion was miniature steam trains, which ran on 900 feet of track around his house. On several occasions he travelled back to his native land where he met fellow English train enthusiasts. Such visits usually prompted invitations to conduct, and in October 1971 he was one of four distinguished conductors with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, who introduced their own music to a packed Royal Albert Hall audience as part of Filmharmonic ’71.

His private life attracted media attention in 1941 when he became the first husband of Judy Garland. The marriage didn’t survive the pressures of Hollywood fame, but David eventually found the right partner in his third wife, Betty, who survived him. He died on 23 August 1990, at his home in Burbank, California, aged 80. 

PAUL WESTON

Paul Weston is the only one of the famous trio of conductors on this CD actually to have been born in the USA. It all began way back on 12 March 1912, when Paul Wetstein (later to become Weston) was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. As a very young man he needed to find something to occupy him following an horrific train accident which had almost killed him, and he decided to study arranging whilst undergoing a long convalescence. (Interestingly there are similarities with Percy Faith’s early life). It proved to be the turning point in his career, especially as he had previously failed an audition to join a dance band as a clarinet player.

While still doing some graduate work at Columbia University, in 1934 he sold some arrangements to the Joe Haymes Orchestra. When Tommy Dorsey took over the Haymes orchestra in 1935, he hired Paul Weston as his chief arranger. This association lasted five years, during which time the Dorsey band produced some of its most memorable recordings, including the legendary Song of India, Stardust and Night and Day. While with Dorsey, Weston met his future wife, Jo Stafford, who was then a member of the Pied Pipers vocal group: they eventually married in 1952.

After leaving Dorsey he worked with Bob Crosby and the young Dinah Shore. At Crosby’s invitation he went to Hollywood in 1940, and the following year he did his first film arranging for the Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire movie "Holiday Inn". Other films quickly followed, and while at Paramount he met songwriter Johnny Mercer, who in 1942 was in the process of forming Capitol Records in partnership with record-store owner Glenn Wallichs and composer Buddy de Sylva.

So in 1943 Weston joined the staff at Capitol, where he recorded with their growing roster of singers. At the same time he was working extensively in shows on radio and later television, often with Jo Stafford. Thereafter he was picked by many top stars as their musical director.

In 1950 Weston had left Capitol for Columbia Records, where he built upon his previous successes with mood music 78s, by producing a series of LPs that soon accumulated healthy sales. Despite this, in 1958 he was sacked by A&R Manager Mitch Miller and returned to Capitol where some of his earlier big sellers were re-recorded in stereo. As a freelance he also backed Ella Fitzgerald on her ‘Irving Berlin Songbook’ for Verve.

Weston was no mean composer, and he collaborated on several big hits, among them Day by Day, I Should Care, Shrimp Boats, Autumn in Rome, Gandy Dancers’ Ball and When April Comes Again. His standing among his peers can be judged by the fact that he was a founder member and first president of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), the organisation which began awarding Grammys in 1958.

Unlike some of his contemporaries, he liked to use the whole orchestra, not just a few sections. "All I did was add strings to a dance band" he once explained. "The reason it still swung was because I used good jazz musicians." These included soloists of the highest calibre, like Ziggy Elman, Eddie Miller, Paul Smith and Barney Kessel. He sometimes resisted the temptation to amplify the strings, by having the rest of the band play softly during important string passages, resulting in a chamber-music quality that went right to the heart of his kind of music.

Aside from his orchestral work, Paul became the ‘Jonathan’ of Jonathan and Darlene Edwards – a spoof act he formed with his wife Jo Stafford in which she was a poor amateur hopeful with an equally useless accompanist. Record buyers loved it, and it even won them a Grammy.

The final ‘bonus’ track on this CD features Paul discussing the project to record 24 pieces by Jerome Kern, preceded by two of his arrangements from that album.

In 1971 the Trustees of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences gave its Trustees Award to Paul Weston. He died on 20 September 1996, at Santa Monica, California, aged 84.

Potted biographies such as these can only attempt to give basic information about the musicians who have given so much pleasure to the world. It is hoped that those who appreciate this kind of music will be encouraged to learn more about them, through the many sources of information available from reference books and the internet. Fortunately their rich legacy of recorded music remains widely available for the enjoyment of future generations.

David Ades

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The Guild "GOLDEN AGE OF LIGHT MUSIC" series celebrated its 100th release in November 2012! 

GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5200

A Glorious Century Of Light Music

1 Look For The Silver Lining (from "Sunny") (Jerome Kern, arr. Brian Fahey)
CYRIL ORNADEL AND THE STARLIGHT SYMPHONY
MGM SE 3906 1961
2 April In Paris (from "Walk A Little Faster") (Vernon Duke)
PAUL MAURIAT AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Bel Air 7008 1961
3 Puppet Serenade (Ron Goodwin)
RON GOODWIN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone PCS 3019 1961
4 The Party’s Over (from "Bells Are Ringing") (Jule Styne; Betty Comden; Adolph Green)
MANTOVANI AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca 45-F11281 1960
5 Love’s Sweet Song (from "Czardas Princess") (Emmerich Kalman)
HANS CARSTE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Polydor SLPHM 237501 1960
6 Milord (Marguerite Monnot; Bunny Lewis)
FRANCK POURCEL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV CSD 1303 1960
7 Lady In Waiting (Ballet Music from the musical "Goldilocks") (Leroy Anderson)
LEROY ANDERSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Brunswick STA 3030 1960
8 Beach Parade (Roger Roger)
ROGER ROGER AND HIS CHAMPS ELYSEES ORCHESTRA
Chappell C 687 1960
9 Climb Every Mountain (from "The Sound Of Music") (Richard Rodgers)
BILLY VAUGHN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Dot DOT 25276 1960
10 The Little Train Of The Caipira (Heitor Villa-Lobos)
MORTON GOULD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RC A LSC 1994 1960
11 All The Way (featured in the film "The Joker Is Wild") (Jimmy Van Heusen; Sammy Cahn)
FRANK CHACKSFIELD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca SKL 4061 1959
12 Stringopation (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM SE 3748 1959
13 How Deep Is The Ocean (Irving Berlin)
HANS GEORG ARLT AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Ariola 71231 1959
14 It’s D’Lovely (from "Red, Hot and Blue") (Cole Porter)
STANLEY BLACK AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LK 4163 1956
15 Pipsqueak (Dolf van der Linden)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Paxton PR 610 1954
16 Candlelight Waltz (Jack Mason)
BOSTON ‘POPS’ ORCHESTRA Conducted by ARTHUR FIEDLER
RCA 49-4219 1954
17 Butantan (Guy Wood)
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
HMV B 10657 1954
18 The Starlings (Charles Williams)
CHARLES WILLIAMS AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Columbia DB 3215 1953
19 Sewing Circle (Ray Martin)
RAY MARTIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Coilumbia DB 2896 1951
20 Tea For Two (from "No, No, Nanette") (Vincent Youmans)
ANDRE KOSTELANETZ AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia ML4382 1951
21 Samba Sud (Sidney Torch)
SIDNEY TORCH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 3049 1947
22 String Time (Robert Farnon)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON
Chappell C 304 1947
23 Stars In Your Eyes (Mar) (Gabriel Ruiz, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca 23445 1945
24 Dreams On The Ocean (Joseph Gungl)
MAREK WEBER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV C 3123 1939
25 The Jester At The Wedding – March (Eric Coates)
SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERIC COATES
Columbia DB 1505 1934

BONUS TRACK

26 Toymaker’s Dream (Ernie Golden)
JACK HYLTON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 5656 1929

Stereo: tracks 1-7, 9-13; rest in mono

This compilation represents a double celebration. Firstly it praises the talented conductors and composers who created a wealth of Light Music during the 20th Century; and secondly it recognises that this is the 100th Guild Light Music CD dedicated to the preservation of all that is best from "The Golden Age of Light Music".

Choosing the music to include in this landmark collection has not been easy, because there are so many conductors and composers who made valuable contributions to the world of Light Music during the last century. After much soul-searching it was decided to concentrate on the conductors who became household names at the time, through their regular recordings and broadcasts. Inevitably some who fully deserve to be featured on this very special occasion have had to be omitted, simply because they could not all be squeezed onto this small silver disc. Regular collectors will know that over 2,500 compositions have already appeared in this series, covering a wide variety of orchestral and brass and military band performances, so it is hoped that your own particular favourites have not been ignored for the part they have played in "The Golden Age of Light Music".

Light music admirers may, quite rightly, ask why the best known recordings by each of the conductors have not been selected. The simple answer is that they are most likely to have appeared on one of the previous ninety-nine CDs in this series. In fairness to the many regular collectors, tracks are not duplicated, but the enjoyable choice of music that has been carefully programmed here illustrates the outstanding quality of the substantial body of work achieved by each of these talented musicians.

The honour of providing the opening track goes to Cyril Ornadel, but equal praise is due to Brian Fahey for creating such an exciting arrangement of a familiar melody that is usually heard in a far more sedate setting. A good tune will lend itself to different interpretations: it used to be said that whether a song was truly great depended upon its acceptance for improvisation by jazz musicians. In the case of Light Music, popular songs often receive distinguished orchestrations that must have delighted the composers. Two previous Guild CDs (GLCD5188 & 5193) have already emphasised the importance of the arranger – something which is evident on every track in this collection. Unfortunately on this occasion there is only room in the notes for brief pen portraits of each of the conductors featured.

In the 1950s Cyril Ornadel (1924-2011) was well-known in Britain (mainly through his television work) but his recording career owed much to the USA, where MGM commissioned numerous albums featuring his ‘Starlight Symphony’ which were recorded at EMI’s famous Abbey Road studios in London.

The French conductor Paul Julien André Mauriat (1925-2006) was classically trained, which is sometimes evident in his work, although his early interest in jazz and popular music was paramount during his long career. He became internationally famous in 1968 through his recording of Love Is Blue.

Ronald (Ron) Alfred Goodwin (1925-2003) was a brilliant British composer, arranger and conductor, who rose to prominence in Britain during the 1950s through a series of recordings that revealed a fresh and vibrant style of light music that greatly appealed to the public. His ability to arrange and compose soon resulted in commissions to work in films, many of which became box-office hits around the world.

Annunzio Paolo Mantovani (1905-1980) was the conductor of one of the most famous light orchestras in the world from the 1950s onwards. Born in Venice, his family came to England when he was aged four and he was something of a prodigy on the violin by the time he reached sixteen. But he leaned more towards popular music, and fronted many different kinds of ensembles before long-playing records (especially when stereo arrived) eventually brought him worldwide acclaim.

The German conductor Hans Friedrich August Carste (1909-1971) enjoyed a long recording career, before and after World War 2. He became one of the musical directors at RIAS in Berlin in the late 1940s, and eventually formed his own concert orchestra: he also composed for films and the stage.

Franck Pourcel (1913-2000) is recognised as one of the big names in French popular music. During his long career he recorded over 2,000 songs, and achieved world-wide success with I Will Follow Him which he co-composed with Paul Mauriat.

Leroy Anderson(1908-1975) is probably the best-loved American light music composer of his generation. For many years he was the chief arranger for the Boston ‘Pops’, and he was so prolific that some of his numbers have tended to become overlooked. His music for the musical "Goldilocks" surely deserves to be better known.

The third French conductor to be celebrated in this special collection is Roger Roger (1911-1995), who had the ability to compose the kind of catchy instrumental pieces that were much in demand from recorded music libraries around 50 years ago.

Billy Vaughn (1919-1991) was very successful in producing big-selling orchestral albums in the USA, partly through his position as musical director of Dot Records. His foreign tours with his band earned him many friends, especially in the Far East.

Morton Gould (1913-1996) became one of the most highly respected American composers and conductors. He generally also arranged the works he conducted in the concert hall and on records, and from 1986 to 1994 he held the important position of President of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).

Francis (Frank) Charles Chacksfield (1914-1995) conducted one of the finest light orchestras in the world, and during his long recording career with Decca alone, it is estimated that his albums sold more than 20 million copies. He was the first British orchestra to achieve a No. 1 with a non-vocal disc in the US charts.

London-born David Rose (1910-1990) became one of the truly great light orchestra leaders in the USA, and his compositions such as Holiday For Strings (his own extended arrangement is on Guild GLCD 5189) and The Stripper sold millions.

German violinist Hans-Georg Arlt (1927-2011) began his distinguished radio career in 1946, and when the RIAS Dance Orchestra was formed in 1948 he led the string section for a while. In the following years he became a familiar name on German radio and television with his own String Orchestra.

The London pianist and bandleader Stanley Black (born Solomon Schwartz 1913-2002) was successful in many areas of music during his long career which began in his teens. From playing piano in Harry Roy’s dance band he became keen on Latin-American music, and later recorded many fine light orchestral albums, which made him popular around the world.

Dolf van der Linden (real name David Gysbert van der Linden, 1915-1999) was the leading figure on the light music scene in the Netherlands from the 1940s until the 1980s. As well as broadcasting frequently with his Metropole Orchestra, he made numerous recordings for the background music libraries of major music publishers, often featuring his own compositions. He also made transcription recordings for Dutch radio and other companies. His commercial recordings (especially for the American market) were often labelled as ‘Van Lynn’ or ‘Daniel De Carlo’.

One of the most popular light orchestras in the USA for many years was the Boston ‘Pops’, under its legendary conductor Arthur Fiedler (1894-1979). It is appropriate that he should actually have been born in Boston where he became the eighteenth conductor of the ‘Pops’ in 1930, and remained at the helm until a heart attack following a performance on 5 May 1979 which hastened his death two months later at the age of 84.

George Miltiades Melachrino (1909-1965) was one of the big names in British light music from the 1940s to the 1960s. Born in London, he became a professional musician, competent on clarinet, alto and tenor saxophone, violin and viola, and he worked with many British dance bands in the 1930s. After war service he built an orchestra which became one of the finest in the world. When long playing records arrived, Melachrino’s sold in vast quantities, especially in the USA.

Londoner Charles Williams(born Isaac Cozerbreit, 1893-1978) began his career accompanying silent films, then played violin under the batons of Beecham and Elgar. Right from the start of the ‘talkies’, he provided scores for numerous British films, and his Dream Of Olwen (on GLCD5192) is still remembered long after the film in which it appeared – "While I Live". In 1960 he topped the American charts with his theme for the film "The Apartment" (GLCD5180), although in reality the producers had resurrected one of his earlier works Jealous Lover.

Raymond (Ray) Stuart Martin (born Raymond Wolfgang Kohn in Vienna, 1918-1988) fled from the Nazis and settled in England before the outbreak of World War 2 where he became known as ‘Ray Martin’. He was one of the leading names in British popular music during the 1950s, due to his work on radio, television, films and especially the recording studios.

Although he was born in Russia, Andre Kostelanetz (1901-1980) was one of the biggest pioneers in American light orchestral music during the middle years of the 20th Century. His broadcasts and recordings were enjoyed by millions, and it was his ambition to encourage everyone to appreciate good quality orchestral music.

Canadian-born Robert Farnon (1917-2005) is widely regarded as one of the greatest light music composers and arrangers of his generation. His melodies such as Portrait Of A Flirt (GLCD5120) and Jumping Bean (GLCD5162) are familiar to millions around the world.

Sidney Torch, MBE (born in London, Sidney Torchinsky 1908-1990) is well-known in Britain for his numerous Parlophone recordings, as well as his long tenure as conductor of the BBC Concert Orchestra in the "Friday Night Is Music Night" BBC radio programme.

Toronto-born Percy Faith (1908-1976) moved permanently from Canada to the USA in 1940 where he quickly established himself through radio and recordings. From the 1950s onwards his fame spread internationally, due to the great success of his numerous long playing albums. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Faith arranged all his own material, and he had a particular love of Latin American music.

The 1940s witnessed the arrival of a new generation of light music composers and conductors, whose inventive ideas would be developed to near perfection during the following two decades. Until the end of the 1930s, many light orchestras and small ensembles were still performing the kind of music that had been popular in the previous century, with the waltz forming a significant part of their repertoire. This was certainly the case in central Europe, where the likes of Barnabas Von Geczy, Dajos Bela, Otto Dobrindt and their peers recorded vast amounts of light music, but their audiences expected – and were supplied with – waltz after waltz. Foremost among these was Marek Weber (1888-1964). Born in the Ukraine, he developed his career mainly in Germany, then moved to London to escape the Nazis, before living briefly in Switzerland then emigrating in 1937 to the USA.

This tribute to the 20th Century would not be complete without saluting the English composer and conductor widely known as ‘the uncrowned King of Light Music’. Eric Coates (1886-1957) was a successful composer of ballads in the early years of the last century, before devoting all his energies to light music. He was particularly adept at writing catchy melodies that appealed as BBC signature tunes and then making definitive recordings of them, helping to establish his high profile with the music-loving public which continues to this day through new recordings of his works.

There is sufficient time available on this CD to allow the inclusion of a ‘bonus’ track, which acknowledges the popularity among many collectors of recordings from the 1920s and 1930s that have been featured in some of our previous compilations. The British dance band fronted by Jack Hylton (1892-1965) was one of the longest running, and arguably most popular, due to its many recordings and broadcasts, frequent appearances in Variety theatres and its foreign tours. Among its wide-ranging repertoire it sometimes featured works that can probably best be described as orchestral novelties: two examples can be found on earlier Guild CDs - Wedding Of The Rose (GLCD5106) and Dancing Tambourine (GLCD5163). As well as being instantly appealing, thanks to their inspired arrangements they were often quite fun – which is partly the intention of our final track. It’s hard to believe that this fine recording is well over 80 years old and it is a tribute to the skills of the recording engineers of the 1920s. There seems little doubt that Hylton’s knack of giving his audience what it liked reflected the fact that Light Music was an important part of the popular music scene during much of the 20th Century.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5195

Great British Composers – Volume 1

"London Suite"" (London Everyday) (Eric Coates)
1 Covent Garden
2 Westminster
3 Knightsbridge
ERIC JOHNSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Westminster WPS 103 1961
4 Prelude (from "Moods" Suite) (Haydn Wood)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 116 1942
5 Dance Of An Ostracised Imp (Frederic Curzon)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by FREDERIC CURZON
Boosey & Hawkes O 2044 1946
6 Ballet For Children (from the film "Things To Come") (Arthur Bliss)
LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIR ARTHUR BLISS
Decca SDD 255 1959
"Blithe Spirit" – music from the film (Richard Addinsell)
7 Prelude
8 Waltz
LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by MUIR MATHIESON
Columbia DX 1186 1946
9 Bank Holiday (’Appy ’Ampstead) (Albert William Ketèlbey)
NEW SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by STANFORD ROBINSON
Decca LK 4080 1954
"Nell Gwynn" (Edward German)
10 Country Dance
11 Pastoral Dance
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 145 & 146 1942
12 Cavalcade Of Youth (Jack Beaver)
DANISH STATE RADIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON (‘The Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra Conducted by David King’ on disc label)
Chappell C 397 1950
"The Shoe" Ballet (John Ansell)
13 The Shoe
14 The Sandal
15 The Brogue
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 166 & 167 1942
16 Caribbean Caprice (Len Stevens)
SIDNEY TORCH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 3171 1949
17 The Unwanted (modern ballet impression): The Boy (Trevor Duncan, real name Leonard Charles Trebilco)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CEDRIC DUMONT
Boosey & Hawkes O 2333 1958
18 White Cliffs (Clive Richardson)
CONTINENTAL THEATRE ORCHESTRA Conducted by HEINZ BUCHHOLD
Bosworth BCV 1330 1961
"Holidays Abroad" (Vivian Ellis)
19 Reunion In Vienna
20 Costa Brava
21 Leaning Tower Of Pisa
22 Paris Taxi
23 Swiss Air
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by MONIA LITER (as ‘Paul Hamilton’)
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2370. O 2371, O 2372 1960
24 The White Knight (Charles Williams)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 705 1961
Stereo: tracks 1-3 & 6; rest in mono

At the outset it is important to emphasise that the idea behind this compilation is not to offer a definitive selection of the very best British composers of Light Music. Such an enterprise could fill at least ten CDs, and then still leave many deserving composers unrepresented. The intention is simply to provide examples of the work of just some who are considered by their admirers to possess the special talents that are particularly suited to the challenge of having their works performed by a concert orchestra.

Some pieces are longer than the usual styles to be found on most Guild Light Music CDs; but there are also examples of shorter numbers to provide contrasts and emphasise the wide variety of music that is generally recognised as ‘Light Music’ or ‘Concert Music’. Collectors who already have the very first volume of this series – "An Introduction" GLCD5101 – may recall that the accompanying notes tried to explain where the boundaries of Light Music might possibly lie. Perhaps the truth is that no two music lovers will ever reach a precise agreement on this sometimes thorny subject. Does it really matter? Surely the enjoyment of the music is the paramount importance, and it is hoped that the undoubted skill of all the composers on this disc will dispel any lingering doubts that Light Music occupies a valuable and important niche in the whole music scene.

The one man who carried the torch for light music during the first half of the last century was EricCoates (1886-1957), who became widely known as ‘the Uncrowned King of Light Music’. Originally a successful composer of ballads, eventually he devoted all his energies to light music and was particularly adept at writing catchy melodies that appealed as BBC signature tunes, the most famous being Knightsbridge from "London Suite" (used as the opening and closing music for "In Town Tonight"). This legendary 78 has been reissued on numerous occasions, and collectors wishing to acquire it have many choices available to them. Therefore this CD offers what are believed to be the first stereo performances of one of Coates’ best known works, which received favourable critical reviews.

Since the name ‘Eric Johnson’ first appeared towards the end of the 1950s, record buyers have wondered who this obviously accomplished conductor actually was. There were suspicions that this was a pseudonym (possibly for contractual reasons) and recent researches reported on the internet point to the likelihood that ‘Johnson’ could have been Dr Kurt List (1913-1970). List was born in Vienna and studied music under Alban Berg and Anton Webern. The ‘Johnson’ recordings appeared on the Westminster Records label; this was founded in 1949 by the owner of New York’s Westminster Record shop. Dr Kurt List is mentioned as being a music consultant to the label in 1951, but by the mid-1950s (when Westminster was linked with the UK Nixa label) there are references to him being Vice President and Music Director. The London Philharmonic Orchestra made some anonymous classical recordings for Westminster at Walthamstow Town Hall in August 1956, and there is the temptation to wonder if the Eric Coates recordings may have a similar provenance.

If Eric Coates was the ‘Uncrowned King’, then surely Haydn Wood (1882-1959) must have been the ‘Crown Prince of Light Music’. His career was similar in so many ways, and when it came to ballads Wood was more successful – Roses of Picardy being the prime example. This native Yorkshireman created a wealth of delightful melodies, often as part of suites, and Guild has already dedicated an entire CD to his music – "Joyousness" (GLCD5121). His contribution this time is the Prelude from his "Moods Suite".

London-born Frederic Curzon (1899-1973) was a charming, unassuming man who devoted his early career to working in the theatre, and like so many of his contemporaries he gradually became involved in providing music for silent films. As well as being a fine pianist and a conductor, he also played the organ, and his first big success as a composer was his "Robin Hood Suite" in 1937. This encouraged him to devote more of his time to writing and broadcasting, and several of his works have become light music ‘standards’, notably March Of The Bowmen (from "Robin Hood Suite" on GLCD5106), and The Boulevardier (GLCD5177). Dance Of An Ostracised Imp was another popular number, possibly due to its whimsical title which certainly suited the music. Frederic Curzon was eventually appointed Head of Light Music at London publishers Boosey and Hawkes, and for a while was also President of the Light Music Society.

When Arthur Bliss (later to be Sir Arthur Edward Drummond Bliss, 1891-1975) composed the music for the film of H.G. Wells’ "Things To Come" it proved to be the most important score provided up to that time for a British film. It also influenced film music internationally, with many composers embracing more symphonic aspects in their work. As stereo arrived towards the end of the 1950s Bliss was commissioned to record his Concert Suite of music from the film with the London Symphony Orchestra, and on this occasion the March (on Guild GLCD5178) was finally conducted by the composer. The opening scenes of the film are accompanied by the Ballet For Children, with the images of children at Christmas time playing with toy weapons of war. The music conveys the implied menace, which horrendously comes true.

Oxford-born Richard Addinsell (1904-1977) is one of the most famous British film composers of the last century, his Warsaw Concerto from the film "Dangerous Moonlight" (1942) being the work which spawned countless similar works in British films of the post-war era – broadcaster Steve Race named them ‘the Denham Concertos’, after the film studio where many were made. Incredibly he has around 50 films to his name, but much of the credit is due to several brilliant orchestrators who turned his melody lines into the atmospheric scores that so entranced cinema audiences. "Blithe Spirit" was based on a Noel Coward play, first staged in the West End in 1941, and the film’s score owes its charm to the talents of Leonard Isaacs (1909-1997), a pianist, conductor and arranger from Manchester who studied composition with Gordon Jacob, and conducting with Malcolm Sargent from 1925-29 at the Royal College of Music in London. Among several administrative positions he held at the BBC from 1936-63 was Head of Music for the Third programme (1950-54) and a similar position for the Home Service (1954-63). He moved to Canada in 1963, and became a Canadian citizen in 1973.

Albert William Ketèlbey (1875-1959), born in the Lozells area of Birmingham, was a highly successful composer, who earned the equivalent of millions of pounds during the peak of his popularity. Pieces such as In A Monastery Garden (GLCD5182), The Phantom Melody, In A Persian Market (GLCD5120) and Bells Across The Meadow (GLCD5108)brought him international fame, no doubt assisted by his enthusiastic participation in the rapidly growing business of producing gramophone records. In 1924 he composed his "Cockney Suite – Cameos of London Life", and the choice for this CD is the fifth and final movement, Bank Holiday, depicting crowds of Londoners enjoying a holiday funfair on Hampstead Heath.

Edward German (1862-1936) was born at Whitchurch in Shropshire and became ‘Sir Edward’ in the 1928 New Year’s Honours. He entered the Royal Academy of Music as an organ student, subsequently studying the violin and eventually composition. It was at the suggestion of Sir Arthur Sullivan that he turned his attention to comic opera. After Sullivan's death he was given the task of completing Sullivan's unfinished score of The Emerald Isle produced in 1901. Its success led to the composition of Merrie England (1902), A Princess Of Kensington (1903), Tom Jones (1907) and Fallen Fairies (1909). He also composed more symphonic works including Welsh Rhapsody, Norwich Symphony and Theme And Six Diversions. In 1900 German composed the music for "Nell Gwynn" - a stage play originally known as "English Nell".

Among the great composers such as Coates, Wood, Bliss and German in this collection are several others whose names will mean little to most music lovers. Yet their melodies have become part of the story of light music in Britain, and they fully deserve to be included on this CD. Jack Beaver (1900-1963) was born in Clapham, London, and in the 1930s and 1940s he was part of Louis Levy’s ‘team’ of composers, providing scores for countless feature films and documentaries, including Alfred Hitchcock's first huge international hit "The Thirty-Nine Steps" (for which Beaver received no credit). He was hired by Warner Bros. to run the music department at their British studio at Teddington in the early 1940s and was also much in demand for scoring theatrical productions. He frequently undertook a punishing workload, including numerous pieces for London production music libraries, which eventually contributed towards his early death. His ability to create music to cover almost any mood was second to none, and his Cavalcade Of Youth was just one in a series of notable works. This is his 14th composition on a Guild Light Music CD.

John Ansell (1874-1948) was at one time assistant conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and he was also frequently employed in London theatres. As a composer he may be familiar to music lovers for his overture Plymouth Hoe (which he conducts on Guild GLCD 5106) and Windjammer Overture (an edited version is on GLCD5163). But sadly a lot of his quite considerable catalogue of music is now neglected, including several suites – once so popular among concertgoers. One of these was "The Shoe", from which we feature three of the five moments.

Len Stevens(d. 1989) (his full name was Herbert Leonard Stevens) was – like the aforementioned Jack Beaver - a prolific composer, contributing mood music to several different libraries, with a style that his admirers quickly grew to recognise. In common with so many of the talented musicians employed in the business, he could turn his hand to any kind of music that was needed, and he was also involved in the musical theatre. Caribbean Caprice is typical of the bright and breezy numbers that were always being heard in cinema newsreels of the 1950s, and its appeal prompted commercial recordings by Roberto Inglez (1919-1974) and Sidney Torch (1908-1990), whose version appears in this collection. This is the composer’s 15th appearance on a Guild CD.

Trevor Duncan (real name Leonard CharlesTrebilco, 1924-2005) was working as a BBC sound engineer when one of his first compositions, High Heels (on Guild GLCD 5124) made the light music world sit up and take notice. 28 of his works have already appeared on Guild Light Music CDs, and he was the featured composer in "Hall Of Fame Volume 2" (GLCD 5124). Towards the end of his life he confessed that he was disappointed that he had never been commissioned to write a complete ballet score. His contribution to this CD – The Boy – may be an example of what the music world has missed. In contrast to his many lighter numbers and marches, he has created a haunting theme that conveys the tortured mind of someone who is ‘Unwanted’.

Clive Richardson was part of ‘Four Hands in Harmony’ (playing piano duets with Tony Lowry), but that was just a small interlude in a long and successful career. He was an early contributor of scores to British films, especially some of the Will Hay comedies, although he wasn’t credited on-screen. London Fantasia (on GLCD5120) was a big success in the 1940s, when mini-piano concertos were all the rage. Other Richardson compositions to succeed were Melody On The Move (GLCD5102), Running Off The Rails (GLCD5156) and Holiday Spirit (GLCD5120), that exuberant theme for BBC Children’s Television Newsreel. White Cliffs is one of several pieces he wrote with a nautical theme.

Vivian Ellis (1903-1996) was only 24 when he had his first big success in London’s West End with his show ‘Mr. Cinders’, and he devoted the major part of his illustrious career to the musical stage. However he also wrote several pieces of light music which have become ‘classics’ in their own right, the most famous being Coronation Scot (on GLCD5120 and 5181) which was initially well-known in Britain through its use as one of the signature tunes for BBC Radio’s "Paul Temple" series in the 1940s. Another familiar piece was Alpine Pastures (GLCD5169) used by the BBC to introduce "My Word". Like some of his contemporaries, Vivian Ellis possessed the precious skill of being able to conjure up a strong melody, although he preferred to leave it to others to orchestrate his creations. It is known that Cecil Milner (1905-1989) was responsible for the famous train sounds in Coronation Scot, and the arranger of Ellis’s "Holidays Abroad" Suite was Monia Liter (1906-1988) - at the time the Manager of the Recorded Music Department at Boosey & Hawkes.

Volumes could be written about Charles Williams (born Isaac Cozerbreit 1893-1978) who began his career accompanying silent films, then played violin under the batons of Beecham and Elgar. Right from the start of the ‘talkies’ he provided scores for numerous British movies, and his Dream Of Olwen (GLCD5192)is still remembered long after the film in which it appeared – "While I Live". By far the greatest volume of his composing skills was employed in mood music, providing hundreds of works for several libraries, and 40 have already been included on Guild CDs. His stature as a major composer and conductor of Britain’s Light Music Scene deservedly allows him the honour of closing this compilation of superior works with The White Knight.

David Ades

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About Geoff 123
Geoff Leonard was born in Bristol. He spent much of his working career in banking but became an independent record producer in the early nineties, specialising in the works of John Barry and British TV theme compilations.
He also wrote liner notes for many soundtrack albums, including those by John Barry, Roy Budd, Ron Grainer, Maurice Jarre and Johnny Harris. He co-wrote two biographies of John Barry in 1998 and 2008, and is currently working on a biography of singer, actor, producer Adam Faith.
He joined the Internet Movie Data-base (www.imdb.com) as a data-manager in 2001 and looked after biographies, composers and the music-department, amongst other tasks. He retired after nine years loyal service in order to continue writing.