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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5175

Confetti

1 Confetti (Bronislau Kaper)
MGM STUDIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by JOHNNY GREEN
MGM E 3694 1958
2 Champs Elysees Café (Joseph Kuhn)
PARIS THEATRE ORCHESTRA
Somerset SF 2500 1957
3 Manhattan Playboy (Robert Farnon)
LESLIE JONES and his ORCHESTRA OF LONDON
Pye-Nixa NSPL 83009 1959
4 Hora Staccato (Grigori Dinicu; Jascha Heifetz, arr. Morton Gould)
MORTON GOULD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA Victor LSP 1656 1958
5 Musik Klingt Durch Die Nacht (Hartel; Woltmann)
HANS GEORG ARLT AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Ariola 71231 1959
6 In My Memoirs (Jimmy McHugh; Al Dubin, arr. Robert Farnon)
ROBERT FARNON AND HIS ORCHESTRA (LP label credits "Jack Saunders Orchestra")
Everest SDBR 1011 1958
7 Lina (Francis Lopez, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA with MITCH MILLER, oboe and cor anglais
Columbia CL 551 1954
8 I Concentrate On You (from "Broadway Melody of 1940") (Cole Porter, arr. Conrad Salinger)
CONRAD SALINGER ORCHESTRA Conducted by BUDDY BREGMAN
Verve MG VS-6012 1958
9 Pizzicato Rhumba (Salvatore "Tutti" Camarata)
MUSIC BY CAMARATA
Decca DL 5461 1952
10 Nota Per Nota (Guido Viezzoli)
GEORGE MELACHRINO Conducting the Orchestra of the 6th San Remo Festival
HMV SCT 1519 1957
11 Via Amalfi (Joseph Kuhn)
ROBERTO ROSSANI AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Stereo Fidelity SF-4700 1959
12 Getting To Know You (from "The King And I") (Richard Rodgers; Oscar ammerstein, arr. William Hill Bowen)
WILLIAM HILL BOWEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA Camden CAS 461 1958
13 Montevideo Bolero (Joseph Kuhn)
DOLORES VENTURA, Piano and the CARNIVAL ORCHESTRA
Valiant V-4926 1959
14 Bluebell Polka (F. Stanley, arr. Ron Goodwin)
RON GOODWIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 4094 1955
15 Joey"s Song (Joe Reisman)
JOE REISMAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LPS 1519 1957
16 Twice Around The Island (Joseph J. Leahy; Abe Olman)
DAVID CARROLL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury Wing SRW 12508 1957
17 Bees-A-Buzzin" (Edrich Siebert, real name Stanley Smith-Masters)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Paxton PR 563 1953
18 Mischief (Frederic Curzon)
NEW CENTURY ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Francis, Day & Hunter FDH 010 1946
19 Gadabout (Cyril Watters)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Paxton PR 639 1954
20 Utopia Road (Dolf Van Der Linden)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA ("Paul Franklin" on disc label)
Paxton PR 612 1954
21 Violins In Velvet (Leslie Begueley)
BOSWORTH STRING ORCHESTRA Conducted by LOUIS VOSS
Bosworth BC 1232 1949
22 Market Day (Wilfred Josephs)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CEDRIC DUMONT
Boosey & Hawkes O 2305 1958
23 Treble Chance (Peter Dennis, real name Dennis Alfred Berry)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA ("Paul Franklin" on disc label)
Paxton PR 629 1954
24 Parade Of The Champions (George French)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS METROPOLE ORCHESTRA
Paxton PR 585 1954
25 Florella (L.E. DeFrancesco)
GROSVENOR STUDIO ORCHESTRA
Synchro FM 242 1959
26 Who Killed Cock Robin? (Trad, arr. Paul Fenoulhet)
STUTTGART RADIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by KURT REHFELD ("Crawford Light Orchestra" on disc label)
Josef Weinberger Theme Music JW 152 1958
27 "Dear Miss Phoebe" - Selection (Harry Parr-Davies) Whisper While You Waltz, Spring Will Sing A Song For You, Living A Dream, March Of The Red Coats, I Can"t Resist The Music, All"s Well Tonight, When Will You Marry Me, I Leave My Heart In An English Garden

TOM JENKINS AND HIS PALM COURT ORCHESTRA
HMV B 10047 1951
Stereo: tracks 2-6, 8, 10-13, 15 & 16 : rest in mono

The word "confetti" describes small pieces of paper, of various shapes and colours, often thrown by guests at weddings. In musical terms it can equally apply to an assortment of pieces in different styles, conveying a variety of moods and emotions. In other words, almost a haphazard collection of tunes with no particular theme, except perhaps that they are all a little different. During the compilation of Guild Light Music CDs we sometimes come across enjoyable pieces of music which simply don"t fit in with particular projects. It seems a shame that they should suffer permanent neglect, which is why some previous compilations such as the earlier "Kaleidoscope" trio crop up every so often. Once more it is time to dust off some precious discs patiently awaiting rediscovery. Actually "rediscovery" may not be entirely accurate as many have never previously been available commercially and, for most of the others, this is their first appearance on CD, so it is unlikely that the majority of music-lovers will have heard them before.

New Yorker John Waldo Green, better known in the music business as Johnny Green (1908-1989), enjoys a lasting reputation for his work on MGM Musicals in the 1940s and 1950s, often in collaboration with his friend Conrad Salinger who gave Green the nickname "Beulah". To chronicle all his achievements would take several booklets such as this, since he combined songwriting (his biggest early hit was Body And Soul) with arranging, conducting and piano playing. Green"s contribution to this collection is the opening track Confetti, composed by Bronislau Kaper for the 1956 film "Forever Darling", in which he conducts the legendary MGM Studio Orchestra. Salinger (1901-1961) is featured as arranger of the Cole Porter classic I Concentrate On You.

When stereo discs were launched in the second half of the 1950s, record producers did not hesitate to tempt the public with exotic sounding titles that disguised the fact that they were probably not quite what they may have seemed. It is highly likely that The Cinema Sound Stage Orchestra, The Gaslight Orchestra, The (Rio) Carnival Orchestra, The Paris Theatre Orchestra, Roberto Rossani and his Orchestra and The New World Theatre Orchestra (all featured on various Guild CDs) are basically one and the same. Together with 101 Strings, they were names 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), Miller"s musical director, who composed, arranged, scored or conducted most of the early ones and was well known for his recording work in Hollywood, the US east coast and Germany. Unfortunately his untimely death at the Philadelphia Naval Hospital on 10 March 1962 at the age of 37 from a spinal cord injury meant he never attained the fame he was surely due. Kuhn has already been represented with five compositions on previous Guild Light Music CDs, but such was his prolific output during the early days of stereo that it is felt he deserves to have three more of his works made available once more. Champs Elysees Café and Via Amalfi are tuneful examples of the many pieces he wrote with a European flavour.

The pianist Dolores Ventura was married to British composer and oboe player Ivor Slaney (1921-1998), and it is possible that he was conducting the anonymous "Carnival Orchestra" in Kuhn"s Montevideo Bolero.

Manhattan Playboy was composed as the male counterpart to Portrait Of A Flirt (onGuild GLCD5120), one of the most successful pieces of light music ever, written by the Canadian Robert Farnon (1917-2005). He also excelled as an arranger, and In My Memoirs comes from his album of show tunes associated with Mike Todd.

On the subject of Light Music successes, one of the most played pieces in the last century was Hora Staccato, and the version by Morton Gould (1913-1996) ranks among the very best.

Hans Georg Arlt (b. 1927) 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. He 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.

For a while Mitch Miller (1911-2010) was Percy Faith"s recording manager at US Columbia. He was also regarded as a world class player on oboe and cor anglais, and Faith (1908-1976) recorded two albums which featured Miller as soloist. The bright melody Lina allows Miller to show off his expertise in a dazzling Faith arrangement.

Salvatore ("Tutti") Camarata(1913-2005) was an accomplished trumpet player, but he found his true musical niche during the 1930s as arranger for top bands such as Charlie Barnet, Jimmy Dorsey, Benny Goodman and Paul Whiteman. For a number of years he was musical director of ABC and Decca Records, and was a co-founder of London Records (the US arm of Britain"s Decca).

The special tribute to George Melachrino (1909-1965) in the Guild CD "The Hall of Fame - Volume 3" (GLCD5162) included a rare track, Aprite le Finestre, which was one of the two Italian entries for the first Eurovision Song Contest back in 1956; it was also the 6th San Remo winner the same year. Melachrino recorded all the entries with the San Remo Festival Orchestra for an HMV "stereosonic" tape which was later released as an LP on their International label. Nota Per Nota is another track from those sessions and is reminiscent of much atmospheric Italian film music of the period.

William Hill Bowen (1918-1964) was George Melachrino"s right-hand man in the years immediately following World War 2, often appearing on piano but, perhaps more importantly, as a brilliant arranger who managed to recreate his master"s famous style to perfection. In later years he fronted his own orchestra on many recordings for RCA and Reader"s Digest.

There was a time, back in the 1950s, where it was almost impossible to escape hearing Bluebell Polka. Happily the passage of time has dulled the memory of some of the many trite versions, leaving the bright Ron Goodwin (1925-2003) arrangement as something far more enjoyable.

Joe Reisman (1924-1987) earned a good living from playing saxophone and arranging for top bands, until he became Patti Page"s conductor on many of her 1950s hits. Thereafter he was in constant demand for recording and television work.

David Carroll (1913-2008) - real name Rodell Walter "Nook" Schreier - was well-known in his native USA as a conductor and arranger. In the mid-1940s he joined the newly formed Mercury Records where he spent the next 15 years. Initially employed as an arranger and conductor, he progressed to being a producer and was later promoted as head of artists and repertoire. He was particularly successful writing TV jingles for advertising, and became familiar to the public through his work with The Smothers Brothers, eventually becoming their General Manager.

It is unusual to find a composition by Frederic Curzon (1899-1973) being published by a company other than Boosey & Hawkes, where he was their Head of Light Music for many years. No doubt rivals Francis, Day & Hunter were happy to accept his jaunty Mischief, which receives a suitably polished performance from Sidney Torch (1908-1990) conducting an orchestra of the top session players on the London scene in the 1940s.

Another musician well represented in this collection is Dolf Van Der Linden (1915-1999), who conducts on five tracks, one of them his own piece Utopia Road. He wrote several works in this style which might be called "industrial" because they lend themselves for so many uses in films, especially documentaries. His real name was David Gysbert van der Linden and he was the leading figure on the light music scene in the Netherlands from the 1940s until the 1980s. It could be said that the famous Metropole Orchestra was his "baby". Shortly after the end of the Second World War, he was approached by the local broadcasting authorities Herrijzend Nederland (Rising Netherlands) and asked to form an orchestra of 40 musicians specialising in light music. The Metropole Orchestra performed their first broadcast on 25 November 1945, and under Dolf's leadership it soon became one of the finest ensembles of its kind in Europe. This was due in no small measure to the fact that Dolf succeeded in happily combining his own enthusiasm and aspirations with the outstanding technical qualities of the Metropole Orchestra and its talented musicians. As well as broadcasting frequently, the Metropole Orchestra made numerous recordings for the background music libraries of major music publishers, notably (but not exclusively) Paxton (from which the tracks on this CD originate), Boosey and Hawkes (under the pseudonym "Nat Nyll") and Charles Brull (as "David Johnson"). Dolf"s commercial recordings (especially for the American market) were often labelled as "Van Lynn" or "Daniel De Carlo".

The other recordings by Dolf van der Linden"s fine orchestra feature works by Edrich Siebert, Cyril Watters, Peter Dennis and George French. Siebert"s real name was Stanley Smith Masters (1903-1984) and his early musical career was as a boy musician in the Cheshire Regiment. When he left the Army in 1946 he concentrated on composing, often for military and brass bands, although his works seemed to adapt well for concert orchestras - Bees-A-Buzzin" being a good example. Peter Dennis hides the true identity of Londoner 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 Recorded Music Library, but also contributed titles to other publishers. His Treble Chance has been used extensively in British TV soap commercials in recent times. George French was a British violinist who broadcast frequently on the BBC, often as leader for many well-known conductors in programmes such as "Music While You Work". He clearly had a gift for composing, but his recorded output was not substantial. Parade Of The Champions is his third appearance on a Guild CD.

The other composer heard under Dolf van der Linden"s baton is Henry Cyril Watters (1907-1984). Originally a dance band pianist, Cyril realised that he had a talent to compose when he won a Melody Maker Song Contest in 1929, but throughout the 1930s he had to concentrate on performing because it was a continual struggle trying to get his music published. After serving in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, he became an arranger with several leading publishers, and his own works were soon being accepted by production music companies. One of them, The Willow Waltz, won an Ivor Novello Award in 1960. Although he was accomplished at writing in a variety of different moods, it is perhaps his bright and breezy pieces (such as Gadabout) that were so successful in the mood music libraries. Not content with just creating a strong main melody - always instantly appealing - his works are characterised by attractive middle themes which lift the composition to a higher level.

Leslie Begueley composed Canyon Canter which received much praise when it was included on GLCD5131. Violins In Velvet reveals another side to his composing talents.

The British composer Wilfred Josephs (1927-1997) probably first came to the attention of most music lovers through his work on top television series such as "The Great War" (1964) and "I Claudius" (1976). Newspapers frequently told their readers that he was really a dentist, who also happened to write music, but this trivialised his considerable achievements which included 12 symphonies, 22 concertos and numerous other works from overtures to film scores. His modest contributions to production music include Market Day which brilliantly captures the bustle and diversity of such happenings.

Every now and then one discovers an unusual piece of production music which fails to fit in with the usual recordings on offer. Florella is certainly a case in point: it was published in 1959 and, despite its 1920s style it sounds like it was a contemporary performance with musicians simply having fun.

If you lived in Britain during the middle years of the last century you will have been familiar with the name of Paul Fenoulhet (1906-1979) - even if you were unsure how to spell it! At one time he was conductor of the famous Skyrockets then moved on to work with several of the BBC"s light orchestras. No doubt his appealing arrangement of Who Killed Cock Robin was originally created for one of his numerous broadcasts.

For a while Tom William Jenkins (1910-1957) became a household name in Britain, when in 1948 the BBC asked him to succeed Albert Sandler (1906-1948) as conductor of the Palm Court Orchestra for the popular weekly Sunday evening radio programme "Grand Hotel". He was a brilliant violinist who was already highly regarded from his work in theatre and seaside orchestras. Sadly ill health cut short his career at the early age of 46. The music for the show "Dear Miss Phoebe" was composed by Harry Parr-Davies (1914-1955), who had been responsible for several of Gracie Fields" hits, such as Sing As We Go (played by the BBC Wireless Military Band on Guild GLCD5147). David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5176

From The Vintage Vaults

1 "The Arcadians" Overture (Lionel Monckton; Howard Talbot, arr. Arthur Wood)
ARTHUR WOOD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia DX 573 1934
2 Buffoon (Zez Confrey)
NEW LIGHT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
HMV B 4244 1932
3 Rondel (Sir Edward Elgar, arr. Haydn Wood); Mina (Sir Edward Elgar)
LIGHT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by HAYDN WOOD
HMV B8282 1935
4 Arpanetta (Ernst Fischer)
ROBERT GADEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Electrola EG 6286 1938
5 A Fantasy In Blue
The Birth Of The Blues, Blue Again, Blue Room, So Blue, There"s A Blue Ridge Round My Heart Virginia, Blue Is The Night, Beyond The Blue Horizon, Blue Hills Of Pasadena, Blue Skies, Where The Blue Of The Night, My Blue Heaven, Good-bye Blues.
FRED HARTLEY AND HIS QUINTET
Decca F 5168 1934
6 Lullaby Land (Reginald King)
LONDON CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1180 1944
7 The Dwarf"s Patrol - Fantasy (Otto Rathke)
THE LITTLE SALON ORCHESTRA
Columbia DB 459 1930
8 Suite Orientale (Francis Popy) Les Bayadères, Au Bord du Gange, Les Almées, Les Patrouilles.
MAREK WEBER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV C 1845 1930
9 March Past Of The Kitchen Utensils (Ralph Vaughan Williams)
BBC THEATRE ORCHESTRA Conducted by CLARENCE RAYBOULD
BBC Transcription Service 27692 1945
10 Gipsy Wine (Helmut Ritter)
BARNABAS VON GECZY AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 8434 1936
11 Springtime Serenade (Jonny Heykens)
MAREK WEBER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 8199 1934
12 In Playful Mood (Montague Ewing)
INTERNATIONAL RADIO ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1032 1937
13 "Gasparone" Potpourri (Carl Millöcker)
EDITH LORAND AND HER VIENNESE ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 2035 1935
14 Püppchen - Two Step Intermezzo (Little Doll) (Jean Gilbert, real name Max Winterfeld)
CONTINENTAL NOVELTY ORCHESTRA
Regal Zonophone MR 565 1932
15 A Day In Naples - Tarantella (George W. Byng)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by JAY WILBUR
Boosey & Hawkes O 2040 1945
16 Mon Bijou (Robert Stolz)
ALFREDO CAMPOLI AND HIS SALON ORCHESTRA
Decca F 5904 1936
17 Songs Of The Fair (Easthope Martin)
SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by WALTER GOEHR (as "George Walter" on record label)
Parlophone E 11268 1935
18 Summer Evening In Santa Cruz (Jose F. Payan; Fred Hartley)
ALBERT SANDLER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia FB 2367 1940
19 Niagara (Carl Robrecht)
PALL MALL REVELLERS
Bosworth BC 1071 1938
20 Sousa Marches - Medley (John Philip Sousa, arr Major Williams) Washington Post, King Cotton, Stars and Stripes, Liberty Bell, El Capitan, High School Cadets, The Diplomat, Stars and Stripes.

JACK HYLTON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca F 5216 1934

Famous composers of symphonies, marches, jazz and just about everything in-between can be found in this varied selection, mainly from the inter-war years, which surely qualifies for the adjective "eclectic". If anyone still needs convincing that the general term "Light Music" covers a wide variety of styles and performances, then surely the proof is here on this CD.

The reign of Edward VII lasted just nine years, following the death of his mother Queen Victoria in 1901, yet the Edwardian Era (as it has become known) witnessed considerable achievements in many fields, especially popular music. Lionel Monckton (1861-1924) was one of the main players, and most of his musicals reached the London stage during this period. Perhaps his most memorable was "The Arcadians" written in collaboration with Howard Talbot (1865-1928) which premiered at London"s Shaftesbury Theatre on 28 April 1909. The arranging and orchestrations of the music were usually entrusted to musicians well-known for these special skills, and the familiar Overture to "The Arcadians" is the work of Arthur Wood (1875-1953) whose lasting fame rests with his composition Barwick Green (on Guild GLCD5164), the signature tune of the long-running BBC radio serial "The Archers". Wood himself conducts his own orchestra in the 1934 recording which opens this collection.

Edward Elzear "Zez" Confrey (1895-1971) from Peru, Illinois, devoted most of his composing talents to jazz, but fame visited him while still in his twenties when his piano novelty Kitten On The Keys became a big hit in 1921. This prompted many other similar works such as Dizzy Fingers (on Guild GLCD5124) and Stumbling (GLCD5166). Equally popular in the 1930s was Buffoon which receives a charmingly measured performance from the New Light Symphony Orchestra with an unnamed conductor, although it is known that Clifford Greenwood sometimes conducted this kind of repertoire. This was HMV"s "house orchestra" for light music, novelty pieces and popular light classical works, and their previous appearances on Guild include Eric Coates" London Bridge March (GLCD5101) and Westward (GLCD5106).

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 be accurately described as "light music" throughout his life. Notable works in this genre include his Bavarian Dances, Chanson de Matin and Salut d"Amour (on Guild GLCD5122). Less familiar is Elgar"s Rondel, originally a song, which was arranged for the 1935 recording in this collection by its conductor, Haydn Wood (1882-1959). It is followed by what is probably Elgar"s last completed work, a musical portrait of his pet dog Mina.

Arpanetta is a charming piece of light salon music by the celebrated German composer Ernst Fischer (1900-1975), whose most famous work is his orchestral suite Südlich der Alpen (South of the Alps). It is performed by Robert Gaden (1893-1985), a sophisticated violinist born in Bordeaux, France, who led dance orchestras in Germany that were noted for their elegant style. It seems that Arpanetta was unpublished, and the manuscript has been lost, so it is fortunate that Robert Gaden took his orchestra (known as his Tanzsinfonie Orchester) into the Elektrola studios on 18 March 1938 and committed this lovely melody to wax.

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.

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 of Music. In 1927 he took an orchestra into Swan & Edgar"s restaurant at their Piccadilly Circus store, where they remained until 1939. He also started broadcasting regularly (during his career 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 throughout 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 spotlighting music of the 1930s, and in a lighter vein his tuneful orchestra can be heard playing popular melodies on several Guild CDs such as Lullaby Of The Leaves (GLCD 5134) and Roses At Dawning (GLCD 5139). Once again we feature him as a contributor to one of London"s production music libraries with his wistful Lullaby Land.

The Dwarfs' Patrol was composed by Otto Rathke, who wrote a number of similar novelty pieces which were popular in central Europe in pre-war years. Unfortunately the name 'The Little Salon Orchestra' offers no clues as to the real identity of the talented musicians on this recording.

But no doubts can exist regarding the two 78s on this CD by Marek Weber (1888-1964), who was a major recording artist in the 1930s. He was born in the Ukraine, 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. His orchestra tended to specialise in show selections and novelty pieces. The clarity on his 1930 German recording of Francis Popy"s Suite Orientale is quite amazing, demonstrating the high standards being achieved by sound engineers in Berlin during the early years of electrical recording. Popy (1874-1928) was a French composer whose work epitomised the "Belle Époque" and there is a park named after him in his home city of Lyon. Jonny Heykens (1884-1945) was a Dutch composer who was particularly popular in Germany. His most performed work became known as Heyken"s Serenade (Ständchen)(the Marek Weber version is on Guild GLCD5120), and Springtime Serenade is one of several similar pieces - no doubt written in response to public demand.

The English composer Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) has secured his musical legacy with some memorable symphonies, but this prolific composer also excelled in film scores, opera, choral music and in the adaptation of folk songs. March Past Of The Kitchen Utensils originated as incidental music for a Cambridge production of Aristophane"s comedy "The Wasps" (1909). Clarence Raybould (1886-1972) conducts the BBC Theatre Orchestra in this 1945 BBC Transcription recording. He joined the BBC in 1936 as Assistant Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, a post he held until 1945.

Barnabas Von Géczy [1897-1971] was born in Hungary although his family originally came from Venice. After the First World War his father was appointed concert master at Budapest Opera but Barnabas decided to try his luck in Berlin where in 1924 he obtained his first resident engagement at the Weinhaus Traube. From 1925 to 1937 he led the Hotel Esplanade house orchestra, and during this period he made numerous broadcasts and recordings and undertook frequent tours. He became one of the best-known hotel ensembles in Germany and gained an international reputation. After the Second World War he decided to relocate to the Munich area, and in 1952 he formed a new orchestra.

In Playful Mood is one of many works by Montague Ewing (1890-1957), who also composed under the name "Sherman Myers". He had a most successful career as a composer and arranger of light music and popular songs.

Edith Lorand [1898-1960] was born in Hungary, but spent most of her early career in Germany where she became world-famous as a violinist. She made numerous recordings, mostly light classical and "salon" works, but the changing political situation forced her to return to Hungary in the mid-1930s. Even in her homeland she felt unsafe, so in 1937 she went to the USA where she spent the rest of her life. "Gasparone" is an operetta in three acts by Carl Joseph Millöcker (1842-1899) with a German libretto by Friedrich Zell and Richard Genée.

We are back in unknown territory with "The Continental Novelty Orchestra" but this is likely to be a German ensemble. The catchy number Püppchen is by a composer who adopted the name "Jean Gilbert", but he was actually Hamburg-born Max Winterfeld (1879-1942). He was responsible for over 50 operettas before and after the First World War, but left Germany in 1933 and settled in Argentina where he died in Buenos Aires.

Born in Dublin, George W. Byng (1862-1932) was a busy conductor and composer, especially in London theatres. He was a regular visitor to the recording studios, and accompanied many leading artists such as Peter Dawson and Harry Lauder. At one time he conducted the famous Queen"s Hall Light Orchestra, and was also involved with scoring around 30 ballets. His orchestral suite A Day In Naples was among his most popular works.

The Italian violinist Alfredo Campoli (1906-1991) has occupied a warm place in the affections of British music lovers, since his debut at London"s Wigmore Hall in 1923. He played in many light orchestras, and was also a prolific broadcaster and recording artist in his own name. Mon Bijou is typical of the many light pieces that demonstrated the virtuosity of the maestro and the musicians who played with him. It was composed by Robert Stolz (1880-1975), an acclaimed Austrian composer, highly regarded in his homeland who went to Hollywood to escape the Nazis. In America he enjoyed success writing music for films such as "Spring Parade" and "It Happened Tomorrow".

Frederick John Easthope Martin (1882-1925) was known mainly for his popular songs, which proved popular at ballad concerts. There were three sets of Songs Of The Fair of which the most popular was the familiar Come To The Fair which features at the beginning and end of our recording. The noted English arranger Henry Ernest Geehl (1881-1961) arranged several of Martin"s songs into suites, and it is possible that he was responsible for this familiar score. Walter Goehr (1903-1960) was one of the many talented musicians who left Germany due to the developing political situation in the 1930s. Born in Berlin, he studied conducting with Arnold Schoenberg but was forced to leave his position with German radio in 1932. The Gramophone Company (later to become EMI) invited him to London as a music director, and he made many recordings for their labels, often using the pseudonym "George Walter". His varied career included teaching composition and conducting, and one of his pupils was Wally Stott (1924-2009), later to be known as Angela Morley who was widely praised for her work in Hollywood. In 1945 Goehr was appointed conductor of the BBC Theatre Orchestra, and he also composed several film scores, notably David Lean"s "Great Expectations" in 1946.

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" and Sandler"s own 1940 Columbia recording of Summer Evening In Santa Cruz is typical of 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.

Carl Robrecht (1888-1961) is remembered for his pseudo-oriental novelty Samum, still much loved by brass bands. The Henry Hall version was included on Guild GLCD5106 and another of his pieces in similar vein, Fata Morgana, was featured on GLCD5163. That came from the Bosworth Mood Music Library, which also recorded our version of Niagara by a group of anonymous session musicians. Robrecht appears to have been prominent in hotel band circles in Berlin between the wars, and there is reference to him using the pseudonym "Robby Reight".

Although some British Dance Band purists might disagree, possibly the most famous of the pre-war bands was fronted by Jack Hylton, born John Greenhalgh Hilton (1892-1965). The band made numerous records and toured widely in Britain and overseas. At times its repertoire ventured into light music circles, such as Wedding Of The Rose (on Guild GLCD5163) and Dancing Tambourine (GLCD5106). Hylton provides a rousing finale to this collection with a selection of Sousa marches arranged by a "Major Williams". John Philip Sousa (1854-1932) was universally regarded as the American "March King" and his music is still regularly performed today. David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5177

The Composer Conducts - Volume 1

1 Jet Journey (Ron Goodwin)
RON GOODWIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 3649 1953
2 Courses de Toros (Bull Fights) (Gérard Calvi, real name Grégoire Elie Krettly)
GÉRARD CALVI AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Pye NPL 28003 1958
3 Fun In The Sun (Angela Morley, as Wally Stott)
TELECAST ORCHESTRA Conducted by ANGELA MORLEY (as WALLY STOTT)
Chappell C 688 1960
4 Les Parfums De Paris (Cedric Dumont)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CEDRIC DUMONT
Boosey & Hawkes O 2325 1958
5 Parisian Mode (Woolf Phillips)
WOOLF PHILLIPS AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Columbia DB 2873 1951
6 Sagittarius (Hal Mooney)
HAL MOONEY AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury SR 60073 1958
7 The Phantom Regiment (Leroy Anderson)
LEROY ANDERSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Brunswick STA 3030 1960
8 City Of Veils (Les Baxter)
LES BAXTER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Capitol ST 868 1958
9 Puppets On Parade (Rudolf Friml)
101 STRINGS Conducted by RUDOLF FRIML
Stereo Fidelity SF-6900 1959
10 Subway Polka (Harold Geller)
HARRY GELLER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LPM 1032 1955
11 Bad Timing (from "Billion Dollar Baby") (Morton Gould)
MORTON GOULD, HIS PIANO AND ORCHESTRA
Columbia ML 4451 1951
12 Along The Avenue (Roger Roger)
ROGER ROGER AND HIS CHAMPS ELYSEES ORCHESTRA
Chappell C 644A 1959
13 Montana Round-Up (Kermit Leslie & Walter Leslie real surnames Levinsky)
KERMIT LESLIE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Epic LN 3452 1958
14 Huckleberry Duck (Raymond Scott, real name Harry Warnow)
RAYMOND SCOTT AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Coral CRL 57174 1957
15 Neiani (Axel Stordahl; Oliver)
AXEL STORDAHL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Dot DLP 25282 1960
16 Pam Pam (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM D 149 1957
17 La Bardinetta (André Popp)
ANDRÉ POPP AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia WL 130 1958
18 Fiddle Derby (Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia 4-39491 1951
19 Without Your Love (Guy Luypaerts)
GUY LUYPAERTS AND HIS ORCHESTRA (as "GUY LUPAR"on LP label)
RCA Victor LP 3254 1955
20 Fandango (Frank Perkins)
FRANK PERKINS AND HIS "POPS" ORCHESTRA
Brunswick LA 8708 1955
21 Sports Arena (Wilfred Burns, real name Bernard Wilfred Harris)
HARMONIC ORCHESTRA Conducted by WILFRED BURNS
Harmonic HMP269A 1948
22 Trolley Bus (Charles Williams, real name Isaac Cozerbreit)
QUEEN"S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 283 1946
23 Boulevardier (Frederic Curzon)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by FREDERIC CURZON
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2089 1946
24 Jack The Dancer (Dolf van der Linden)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS METROPOLE ORCHESTRA
Paxton PR 582 1953
25 Blende Auf (Werner Müller)
RIAS DANCE ORCHESTRA Conducted by WERNER MüLLER
Polydor H 49 262 1954
26 Symphony In Jazz (First Movement) (Otto Cesana)
OTTO CESANA AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CL 631 1955

Stereo: tracks 6-9 & 15 - rest in mono.

When composers conduct their own music one assumes that it is being performed exactly as they intended. Therefore such recordings are particularly valuable, and Ron Goodwin (1925-2003) certainly needed no encouragement to pick up the baton. From the 1950s onwards the recording scene in Britain was treated to a succession of his inventive and charming instrumentals which still sound fresh and appealing today. Internationally Ron"s fame would depend largely on his successful film scores such as "633 Squadron" (1964), "Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines" (1965) and Alfred Hitchcock"s "Frenzy" (1972). After several recordings for smaller labels, Ron was signed to EMI"s Parlophone in 1953 and his first recording for them was his own Jet Journey. Although he recorded it later in stereo, it is the first version which opens this CD that many regard as the best.

Gérard Calvi (real name Grégoire Elie Krettly, born 1922) first came to the attention of the public in his native France when he contributed the music in 1948 to a show called "Les Branquignols". The following year he composed the score for "La Patronne", launching a career in mainly European films that would continue for the rest of the 20th Century. By far his best known cinematic work was for the "Asterix" films, but Calvi was equally at home in the theatre and recording studio, and writing popular songs - over 300 in total. Probably his most successful composition internationally was One Of Those Songs - thanks to Will Holt adding the English lyric to a catchy orchestral piece called Le Bal de Madame de Mortemouille (on Guild GLCD5160). This time we feature his description of bull fights - Courses de Toros.

During the 1950s Angela Morley (1924-2009, at the time working as "Wally Stott") composed many light pieces for Chappell & Co., the leading London publishers of background music. Fun In The Sun is typical of the bright, tuneful pieces that became her trademark. Angela Morley went on to enjoy a long and successful career in recordings and films, eventually being much in demand in Hollywood to assist leading composers on major projects - working with John Williams on "Star Wars" being a prime example. Her TV credits included "Dallas" and "Dynasty".

Cédric Dumont (1916-2007) was born in Hamburg, Germany, but during his long career he became known as "Mr. Music Man of Switzerland". Growing up in the 1930s he came into contact with Jack Hylton in England, and over in the USA he seems to have worked briefly with Teddy Wilson, Harry James and Benny Goodman. He settled in Switzerland at the outbreak of World War 2 and was soon broadcasting from the studios in Basel. His career touched the classics as well as jazz, but it was in the sphere of light music that he became known throughout Europe. British mood music libraries engaged him to conduct their works when they were unable to record in Britain due to a Musicians" Union ban, particularly during the 1950s, and his own Les Parfums de Paris is one such example.

Woolf Phillips (1919-2003) did not have the same high public profile as many of his fellow British bandleaders in the middle years of the last century, yet his talent and accomplishments were greater than many of them. However he did get noticed when conducting the orchestra at the London Palladium between 1947 and 1953, and most big band fans knew him through his association with the Skyrockets and later the Geraldo and Ted Heath bands. Before the war he learned orchestration from his famous brother Sid, who played clarinet with Ambrose and contributed some of the most notable arrangements for that band. While at the Palladium Woolf conducted for visiting American stars such as Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland and Tony Martin, and in 1966 his friend Donald O"Connor (of "Singin" In The Rain" fame) persuaded him to relocate to the United States, where he spent the rest of his life. His Parisian Mode was a rare orchestral recording, which was used for a while by BBC Television as the signature tune for the panel game "What"s My Line".

Hal (born Harold) Mooney (1911-1995) is making another Guild appearance with his composition Sagittarius, which comes from a collection spotlighting each sign of the zodiac. In 1956 Mooney became A&R Director and chief arranger at Mercury Records, where he remained until Philips phased out the label towards the end of the 1960s. Mooney then moved to Universal Studios, working as MD on many of the top TV shows of the period, before retiring in 1977.

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 its famous conductor, Arthur Fiedler, introduced many Anderson novelties to an appreciative public. He was so prolific that some of his numbers have tended to become unfairly overlooked, such as The Phantom Regiment.

Texas born Les Baxter (1922-1996) decided to abandon a career as a concert pianist, and chose to concentrate on popular music. He played the tenor sax and is reported to have been influenced by Coleman Hawkins and the Duke Ellington Band. At the age of 23 he joined Mel Tormé"s Meltones and recorded with Artie Shaw, but his heart was set on arranging. As his career progressed he worked for Capitol and RCA, and tended to be asked to record pieces with an "exotic" appeal, like his City Of Veils.

Once again we are pleased to welcome Rudolf Friml (1879-1972) to conduct one of his own compositions. Puppets On Parade seems a far cry from his famous operettas such as "Rose-Marie" and "The Vagabond King", but it surely serves to confirm his versatility.

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. Subway Polka comes from an album of tunes he composed about New York for the American market. 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 the violin and conducting.

Morton Gould (1913-1996) became one of the most highly respected American composers, and his distinguished career was crowned with a Pulitzer Prize (for his Stringmusic, commissioned by Mstislav Rostropovich for the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington) just a year before his death at the age of 82. His Bad Timing comes from a Broadway show that has been overshadowed by his other greater achievements as a composer.

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 admirers internationally. Along The Avenue is one of many works he wrote for the Chappell Recorded Music Library.

Kermit Leslie (born Kermit Levinsky in New York City) often composed with his brother Walter, and it seems a pity that he appears to have made relatively few recordings. Montana Round Up is the ninth work by the Levinsky brothers to appear on Guild.

Raymond Scott was an American bandleader and pianist who composed a melody that is instantly recognisable to the older generation - Toy Trumpet (the version by Reginald Pursglove and his Orchestra is on GLCD5137). This was just one of a number of quirky novelties with similarly quirky titles, such as Twilight In Turkey, Reckless Night On Board An Ocean Liner and Huckleberry Duck, the choice for this collection. Scott"s real name was Harry Warnow (1908-1994) but he used a pseudonym to avoid being accused of nepotism, since his older brother Mark conducted a CBS house orchestra which used to play his tunes.

The name Axel Stordahl (1913-1963) will be familiar to many collectors of American popular music, mainly through his backing for Frank Sinatra during a period known as the singer"s "Columbia years". In 1936 he joined Tommy Dorsey as a trumpet player, and was encouraged to develop his arranging talents. He realised that his style was more suited to slow, sentimental ballads, which became his trademark, and this is evident in his composition Neiani.

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 (on Guild GLCD5120) and The Stripper sold millions. The choice of Pam Pam for this collection has been dictated by the fact that it is one of his lesser known works, yet his mastery of the light orchestra shines through in every bar.

André Charles Jean Popp (b. 1924) is a Frenchcomposer, arranger and screenwriter whose main claim to fame rests with his composition Love Is Blue which was a big hit for Paul Mauriat in 1968, reaching number one in the US charts. But Popp"s long career has embraced many styles, often leading to eccentric arrangements, much of it for his broadcasts on French radio. In contrast with some of his works, La Bardinetta is relatively sedate!

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, and his compositions such as Fiddle Derby confirm his mastery of the light orchestra.

Guy Luypaerts (b. 1917) was born in Paris to Belgian parents during the First World War and he became well-known in French musical circles through conducting an orchestra called the Nouvelle Association Symphonique de Paris. Guild has previously included his imaginative sounds in the Cole Porter tribute (GLCD5127) and conducting inventive cameos such as The Sleepwalker of Amsterdam (GLCD5131), Masquerade In Madrid (GLCD5132), Jose Fontaine"s catchy Whimsy, and his own composition Chatter Box (both on GLCD5160). This time it is the turn of his more conventional Without Your Love.

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 BBC television series "Dad"s Army" in 1971. Sports Arena is one of his many pieces accepted by various London publishers.

Charles Williams(real name Isaac Cozerbreit, 1893-1978) is yet another composer/conductor whose work is now familiar once again through his many Guild recordings. Trolley Bus is one of numerous pieces published by Chappells at a time when he was the main contributor to their Recorded Music Library.

Frederic Curzon (1899-1973) spent most of his early career working in the theatre and like so many of his contemporaries he gradually became involved in providing music for silent films. Later he was appointed Head of Light Music at London publishers Boosey and Hawkes, for whom he composed many highly praised pieces. Several appear in a special concert selection in the second volume of this series, but on this CD we hear his famous Boulevardier in the original full-length version.

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 and his own Jack The Dancer remains one of his most popular works.

Werner Müller (1920-1998) was a bassoonist who became the conductor of the RIAS (Radio In American Sector) Dance Band based in Berlin, which gave its first concert on 24 April 1949. The band soon built up a strong following through its Polydor recordings, with exciting performances such as his own Blende Auf.

Italian born Otto Cesana (1899-1980) spent much of his early career in California where he lived from 1908 to 1930. His piano studies commenced at the age of ten, and he became an accomplished organist; he also learned about orchestration and harmony which he put to good use working in radio and Hollywood film studios. Most critics regarded Cesana"s work as being "easy listening", although the distinguished jazz critic Leonard Feather considered him worthy of an entry in the 1960 Encyclopaedia of Jazz through his acclaimed composition Symphony In Jazz. The first impressive movement makes a fitting finale to this collection. David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5178

The Composer Conducts - Volume 2

1 March from "Things To Come" (Music from the film) (Arthur Bliss)
LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIR ARTHUR BLISS
Decca SDD 255 1959
2 "Pinky" Music from the film (Alfred Newman)
ALFRED NEWMAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury MPL 6500 1956
3 Scherzofrenia (from Symphony No. 5 ½ - "A Symphony For Fun") (Don Gillis)
NEW SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OF LONDON Conducted by DON GILLIS
Decca LM 4510 1950
4 State Occasion (Robert Farnon)
QUEEN"S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON
Chappell C294 1947
5 Dawn Fantasy (Peter Yorke)
PETER YORKE AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA with ARTHUR SANDFORD, piano
Columbia DB 2639 1950
"The League Of Gentlemen" Music from the film (Philip Green)
6 Golden Fleece Theme
7 League Of Gentlemen March
PINEWOOD STUDIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by PHILIP GREEN
Top Rank International JAR-355 1960
8 Salute The Soldier (Eric Coates)
LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERIC COATES
EMI JG 214 1944
9 Les Jeux (Playing) (George Melachrino)
THE MELACHRINO STRINGS Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
HMV C4250 1954
10 Amethyst March (soundtrack recording from the film "Yangtse Incident") (Leighton Lucas)
LEIGHTON LUCAS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone 45-R 4342 1957
11 Strings In The Mood (Walter Collins)
LONDON PROMENADE ORCHESTRA Conducted by WALTER COLLINS
Paxton PR454 1948
12 Naval Occasion (Hubert Clifford)
MELODI LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by HUBERT CLIFFORD
13 Chappell C428 1953
13 "The Dancing Years" - Three Ballet Tunes (Ivor Novello)
THE DRURY LANE THEATRE ORCHESTRA Conducted by IVOR NOVELLO
HMV B 8897 1939
14 International Sports March (Sidney Torch)
QUEEN"S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Chappell C299 1947
15 Rendezvous With Curzon (Frederic Curzon) Cachucha from "In Malaga" Suite; Maid Marian from "Robin Hood" Suite; Bravada; Serenade Of A Clown; March Of The Bowmen from "Robin Hood" Suite
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by FREDERIC CURZON
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2090 1946
16 Selection of Radio Novelty Tunes (Montague Ewing) Fairy On The Clock; Soldier On The Shelf; The Queen Was In The Parlour; Butterflies In The Rain; Little Dutch Clock
MONTAGUE EWING, Piano, with NOVELTY BAND
Rex 8364-A 1935
Three Dale Dances (Suite founded on Yorkshire Folk Tunes) (Arthur Wood)
17 First Movement
18 Second Movement
19 Third Movement
ARTHUR WOOD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia DX 971 1940
20 Wedgewood Blue (Albert William Ketèlbey)
ALBERT W. KETÈLBEY, Piano, and his CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Columbia DX 27 1930
21 Thrills (Charles Ancliffe)
CHARLES ANCLIFFE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia DB 339 1932
22 Cornish Rhapsody (featured in the film "Love Story") (Hubert Bath)
LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by HUBERT BATH, with HARRIET COHEN, piano
Columbia DX 1171 1944

Stereo: track 1 - remainder in mono.

The second collection of composers conducting their own works opens with a significant work for British cinema of the 1930s. When Arthur Bliss (later to be "Sir" Arthur Edward Drummond Bliss, 1891-1975) composed the music for the film of H.G. Wells" 1933 novel "The Shape Of 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. While the film was in production during 1935 Bliss was apparently only partly satisfied with the way in which his music was used, although it seems that he was prepared not to apply any kind of veto. When the film appeared, the music was widely acclaimed and Bliss recorded part of the score for commercial release on Decca. For some reason it was left to the film"s musical director, Muir Mathieson (1911-1975), to conduct the famous March, which soon achieved fame through many other uses especially in newsreels. 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 was finally conducted by the composer.

Alfred Newman (1901-1970 - some references give his birth date as 1900) is occasionally overlooked as an important film composer, yet for much of his career he was probably the most influential and respected among his peers. His Hollywood career began in 1930 and one of his early scores was "Street Scene" in 1931 (the music is included on Guild GLCD5153), and until John Williams finally overtook him in January 2006 he was the most Oscar-nominated composer/conductor, with a tally of 44 nominations resulting in 9 Academy Awards. From 1939 until 1959 he was the musical director at 20th Century Fox, reputed to have worked on around 225 films. "Pinky" from 1949 supposedly dealt with racial problems in southern USA; as one respected critic observed "it has about as much daring as a cheese-mite".

During his lifetime it seems that the American composer Donald Eugene Gillis (1912-1978) did not get the full attention from the American record industry which his talents deserved. It was the British Decca label that brought him to London in 1950 for several sessions at the Kingsway Hall which have preserved for posterity some of his best - and most quirky - creations. Anyone who can compose a piece of music called "Symphony No. 5½" is almost demanding not to be taken too seriously, and to make sure that nobody missed the joke Gillis subtitled his work "A Symphony For Fun". The first movement Perpetual Emotion is on Guild GLCD5156; now we have the third movement Scherzofrenia, which is so typical of the carefree, almost whimsical, work that he offered to music lovers in the middle years of the last century.

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 (on Guild GLCD5120) and Jumping Bean (GLCD5162) are familiar to millions around the world. He composed a vast amount of background music for the Chappell Recorded Music Library, and one of his most used pieces was State Occasion. Strangely he was never asked to make a commercial recording, but we can hear him conducting the original version for Chappell in 1947.

Peter Yorke (1902-1966) was a leading arranger, composer and conductor in Britain for many years, with many recordings and broadcasts to his credit. Among his compositions the mini-concerto Dawn Fantasy ranks as one of the best. It comes from the era when the Warsaw Concerto (composed by Richard Addinsell for the 1941 film "Dangerous Moonlight") spawned a glut of similar works, which broadcaster Steve Race astutely dubbed "the Denham Concertos", after the film studio which often featured such works on their soundtracks.

Philip Green (born Harry 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 began with EMI in 1933, and he is credited with at least 150 film scores, including "The League Of Gentlemen". The music has been sequenced on this CD as it was used in the film.

Eric Coates (1886-1957) was asked to write a piece of music to assist the National Savings Movement during the Second World War. The result was Salute The Soldier which was the name given to the campaign to raise as much money as possible during those difficult times. Although he conducted the work in Trafalgar Square to gain maximum publicity, the special recording issued was made in No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road on 1 February 1944 with Coates and the London Symphony Orchestra.

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. He was also a very good composer, and his strings are shown in their full splendour in his Les Jeux.

Leighton Lucas (1903-1982) seems to have been at home in the fields of more serious music (especially ballet and opera) yet he also produced some pleasing light music and enjoyed success with scores for several prestigious films. In 1954 he wrote the incidental music for "The Dam Busters" (Eric Coates only contributed the famous march), and other projects included "Target for Tonight" (1941 - the theme is on Guild GLCD5118) and "Yangtse Incident" (1957) from which comes the Amethyst March, named after the ship involved in the action.

Walter R. Collins 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. Several of his own compositions have already appeared on Guild CDs (Laughing Marionette on GLCD5134; Linden Grove GLCD5112; possibly his best loved piece Moontime GLCD5168; Paper Hats And Wooden Swords GLCD5144; and Springtime GLCD5138). Strings In The Mood can now be added to this list.

Born in Tasmania, Hubert Clifford (1904-1959) composed several mood music pieces for Chappell"s Recorded Music Library, one of them being Naval Occasion. He provided scores for three British Transport Films in the 1950s, and "Round The Island", which featured the Isle of Wight, impressed him so much that he made his home there.

Ivor Novello (born David Ivor Davies 1893-1951) was a Welsh composer, singer and actor who created some of the most popular shows in London"s West End during the first half of the last century. He was not particularly known for orchestral recordings, so it is nice to be able to include some less familiar music from one of his best shows, "The Dancing Years", in this collection. Apart from many of his songs which have become standards, he continues to be remembered for the annual music awards which bear his name, held in London each Spring.

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. He was also a frequent conductor and composer of mood music recordings for the Chappell Recorded Music Library, which is the source of his International Sports March.

For some years Frederic Curzon (1899-1973) was the Head of Light Music at London publishers Boosey and Hawkes. His famous Boulevardier was included in the first volume of "The Composer Conducts" (GLCD5177) but this was just one of many well crafted piece of light music that flowed from his pen. In 1946 he recorded a Concert Suite which he called "Rendezvous With Curzon" featuring five contrasting pieces. Alongside the better known numbers is the middle section of a charming rarity, Serenade Of A Clown, which he does not appear to have recorded in full for the Boosey & Hawkes Recorded Music Library.

Next to its tunefulness, perhaps the greatest appeal of Light Music is its variety of styles. This aspect is surely displayed in his Selection of Radio Novelty Tunes by London-born Montague Ewing (1890-1957), who sometimes used the American-sounding pseudonym Sherman Myers to make his music more acceptable in the USA. The composer himself plays and conducts a selection of his catchy melodies which audiences of the 1930s certainly appreciated and would have instantly recognised.

Arthur Wood (1875-1953) was a busy theatrical conductor (like many of his fellow composers at that time), and at the age of 28 had the distinction of being the youngest musical director in London"s West End. For a while he was a staff composer with Boosey and Hawkes, creating dozens of short suites, and he was a frequent visitor to the recording studios pre-1914. He made at least two early acoustic recordings of his Three Dale Dances, but fortunately EMI invited him back in 1940 for electrical re-makes.

When Gustav Holst sat an entrance examination for the Trinity College of Music, he was just beaten for a place by Albert William Ketèlbey (1875-1959) who later went on to become one of the most distinctive Light Music voices of his era. Fortunately for posterity, Ketèlbey was a regular visitor to the recording studios as well as a prolific composer. Wedgewood Blue has the bonus of the composer conducting his orchestra from the piano.

Irishman Charles W. Ancliffe (1880-1952) will forever be associated with Nights Of Gladness, (the Mantovani version on Guild GLCD5113 does the famous waltz full justice) but he was a military bandmaster as well as a successful composer. This was illustrated in his march The Liberators (GLCD5163) but he is back in familiar waltz territory with Thrills - his seventh composition to be featured on a Guild CD.

Hubert Charles Bath (1883-1945) composed another of those "Denham Concertos" (mentioned above) for the 1944 British film "Love Story". It told the story of a concert pianist who learned that she had an incurable illness, so she moved to Cornwall. Cornish Rhapsody was the appropriate title of her major concert piece in the film, performed on screen in London"s Royal Albert Hall by Margaret Lockwood; the actual pianist on the soundtrack was Harriet Cohen (1895-1967). Although he worked on around twelve feature films (one was "Rhodes of Africa" which included his Empire Builders March - on GLCD5136), Hubert Bath is almost forgotten today. His composition Out Of The Blue was used for many years to introduce BBC Radio"s "Sports Report", but he had died before it was chosen in 1948. His son John Bath (1915-2004) was also a composer (he wrote Sportsman"s Luck on GLCD5115).Although Rawicz and Landauer, with Mantovani and his Orchestra, gave a splendid rendition in stereo of Cornish Rhapsody around fifteen years later (on GLCD5153), it is perhaps the distinctive sound of the original 1944 recording that suits the atmosphere of the work so perfectly. It provides the climax to two collections featuring some possibly historic occasions when composers allowed us to hear their music, presumably just as they intended. David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5179

Portrait Of My Love
1 Portrait Of My Love (Cyril Ornadel)
CYRIL ORNADEL AND THE STARLIGHT SYMPHONY
MGM 45-MGM 1090 1960
2 Impression Of A Princess (Eric Coates)
DANISH STATE RADIO ORCHESTRA Conducted by ROBERT FARNON ("Melodi Light Orchestra Conducted by Ole Jensen" on disc label)
Chappell C 542 1956
3 I Love You Samantha (Cole Porter)
VICTOR SILVESTER AND HIS SILVER STRINGS
Regal SREG 1015 1959
4 April Love (from the film "April Love") (Sammy Fain: Paul Francis Webster)
MANTOVANI AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca SKL 4067 1959
5 The Prince and Princess Waltz (Dimitri Tiomkin; Ned Washington)
DAVID CARROLL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury MG 20301 1957
6 Wedding Day (Douglas Brownsmith)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by R. de PORTEN
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2223 1953
7 One Night Of Love (Victor Schertzinger, arr. Robert Farnon)
ROBERT FARNON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LK 4055 1953
8 You Are Too Beautiful (Richard Rodgers; Lorenz Hart, arr. Glenn Osser)
GLENN OSSER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Kapp KL 1022 1955
9 Two Hearts In Three-Quarter Time (Robert Stolz)
ANDRE KOSTELANETZ AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CL 863 1956
10 Like Someone In Love (Johnny Burke; Jimmy Van Heusen, arr. Paul Weston)
PAUL WESTON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CS 8042 1958
11 Beguine For Lovers (Joseph Kuhn)
DOLORES VENTURA, piano and the CARNIVAL ORCHESTRA
Valiant V-4926 1959
12 Can"t Help Loving That Man (from "Show Boat") (Jerome Kern)
MANTOVANI AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LK 4215 1957
13 Take Me In Your Arms (Alfred Markus; Fritz Rotter; Mitchell Parish)
LEROY HOLMES AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM E 3378 1956
14 If I Should Fall In Love Again (Jack Popplewell, arr. Peter Yorke)
PETER YORKE AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Delyse Envoy ES 7041 1959
15 Tenderly (Walter Gross; Jack Lawrence)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM E 3067 1953
16 Dancing in The Starlight (Trevor Duncan, real name Leonard Trebilco)
THE SYMPHONIA ORCHESTRA Conducted by CURT ANDERSEN
Harmonic/Charles Brull CBL 461 1960
17 Deep In My Heart, Dear (Sigmund Romberg, arr. William Hill Bowen)
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
RCA Victor LSP 2106 1960
18 You"re My Thrill (Jay Gorney; Sidney Clare)
JACKIE GLEASON AND HIS ORCHESTRA featuring BOBBY HACKETT, trumpet
Capitol W 1147 1959
19 Star Eyes (Don Raye; Gene De Paul)
CYRIL STAPLETON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LK 4177 1957
20 If She Should Come To You (La Montana) (Augusto Alguero; G. Moreu; Alec Wilder)
FRANK DE VOL AND HIS RAINBOW STRINGS
Philips PB 1038 1960
21 For Those Who Love (Frank Cordell)
FRANK CORDELL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV 45-POP 755 1960
22 "Sons And Lovers" - Theme From The Film (Mario Nascimbene)
THE CASCADING STRINGS Conducted by JOHNNY GREGORY
Fontana H 251 1960
23 To A Young Lady (Robert Farnon)
LESLIE JONES and his ORCHESTRA OF LONDON
Pye-Nixa NSPL 83008 1959
24 You Are Beautiful; Love Look Away (from "Flower Drum Song") (Richard Rodgers, arr. Brian Fahey)
CYRIL ORNADEL AND THE STARLIGHT SYMPHONY
MGM SE 3817 1960
25 Amor (from film "Broadway Rhythm") (Gabriel Ruiz, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca 23344 1944
26 The Wedding Dance (Paul Lincke)
LONDON PROMENADE ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERIC ROGERS
Decca LF 1166 1954
27 The Wedding Song (Horan, real name Geoff Love)
MANUEL AND THE MUSIC OF THE MOUNTAINS ("Manuel" is GEOFF LOVE)
Columbia SCX 3297 1960

Stereo: tracks 3, 4, 10, 11, 14, 17, 23, 24 & 27; rest in mono.

"Love like youth is wasted on the young" - thus sang Frank Sinatra to Sammy Cahn"s perceptive words in 1960, although many believe the sentiments originated with playwright George Bernard Shaw. If writers and composers are to be believed, love knows no age boundaries and most of us on the planet will be lucky enough to experience it at least once during our lifetimes. It provides such strong inspiration for all kinds of creative people that few can resist expressing it in words and music, as witnessed in this collection that should mist up the bifocals of those whom Sinatra was originally serenading. Hopefully it will also appeal to a younger generation, where wedding bells may be in the offing.

The honour of providing the title, and the opening track, of this CD goes to Cyril Ornadel (b. 1924) who rose to prominence in Britain during the 1950s, largely due to his weekly appearances conducting the orchestra for the popular television series "Sunday Night at the London Palladium". He was MD for numerous top musicals in London"s West End, and his composing credits include the hit show "Pickwick" and the song Portrait Of My Love which gave Matt Monro an international hit when lyrics were added by "David West", a pseudonym for Norman Newell. Cyril returns later with two love songs from "Flower Drum Song".

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, which helped to establish his high profile with the public, especially in Britain where he became known as "the uncrowned king of light music". Impression Of A Princess was composed as a tribute to Queen Elizabeth"s sister, Princess Margaret, who was the subject of much speculation regarding her romantic private life during the 1950s. Sadly history tells us that she did not always enjoy the carefree, happy lifestyle vividly portrayed in Coates" charming composition.

I Love You Samantha was one of several hit songs in the 1956 film "High Society". The critics thought it dull, but it still appeals to new generations - possibly due to the music from that master who also provided his own witty lyrics, Cole Porter (1891-1964). The British ballroom dancing legend Victor Silvester (1900-1978) makes a welcome return to Guild with his Silver Strings.

From the earliest flickering moments of silent movies on a silver screen, love and romance have been guaranteed to fill cinema seats. Several of the songs featured in this collection were written for films, beginning with April Love from the 1957 movie starring Pat Boone. Mantovani (1905-1980) makes his first of two appearances in this collection with a wistful performance that perfectly captures the sentiments in the lyrics.

David Carroll (1913-2008) - real name Rodell Walter "Nook" Schreier - was well-known in his native USA as a conductor and arranger. In the mid-1940s he joined the newly formed Mercury Records where he spent the next 15 years. Initially employed as an arranger and conductor, he progressed to being a producer and was later promoted as head of artists and repertoire. The Prince and Princess Waltz was composed in honour of Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco.

Douglas Brownsmith (1902-1965 - he preferred not to use his first name which was Reginald) was a pupil at St Paul"s Choir School. His first big success as a composer came in 1927 when Down the Mall - written in collaboration with Tony Lowry - was published. In the following years it was heard frequently in radio broadcasts by organists and light orchestras, and commercial recordings were made by Philip Green (on Guild GLCD5116) and Charles Shadwell (GLCD5171) - also Fodens Motor Works Band (GLCD5147). After the Second World War, production music publishers needed a vast amount of original orchestral compositions to service the requirements of radio, films and the emerging television stations around the world: Bosworth (See-Saw GLCD5144, Time For Fun And Games GLCD5125), Boosey & Hawkes (for whom he composed Wedding Day), Charles Brull (Continental Holiday GLCD5132) and Francis Day & Hunter all published a number of his works. During the 1930s Douglas purchased and ran the only bakery in the village of Ticehurst, Sussex, which he eventually sold and exchanged for a small restaurant in Bexhill-on-Sea. Apart from his music (and his love of cricket) this kept him fully occupied until his death from a sudden heart attack in 1965 at the age of 63.

It"s back to the cinema for the next four melodies, starting with the title song from One Night Of Love starring Grace Moore in 1934. Robert Farnon (1917-2005) conducts his orchestra in one of the polished arrangements that made his 1950s Decca LPs set new standards among fellow musicians. Farnon is heard later as the composer of To A Young Lady, dedicated to his daughter Judith in 1954.

You Are Too Beautiful escaped from Al Jolson"s 1933 movie "Hallelujah, I"m A Bum", giving Glenn Osser (b. 1914) the chance to shine as a conductor as well as an arranger, which had been his forté for many years with the likes of Les Brown, Jan Savitt, Bob Crosby, Bunny Berigan and Charlie Barnet.

Robert Stolz (1880-1975) originally wrote Two Hearts In Three Quarter Time for a 1930 German film, and a quarter of a century later the great maestro Andre Kostelanetz (1901-1980) gave it a welcome new lease of life.

Dinah Shore introduced Like Someone In Love in her 1945 film "Belle Of The Yukon". Paul Weston (born Paul Wetstein 1912-1996) was one of America"s top arrangers and conductors, whose orchestral collections such as "Music For Dreaming" and "Music For Memories" were to provide the springboard for many future albums. In 1971 the Trustees of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences gave him its Trustees Award.

The pianist Dolores Ventura was married to British composer and oboe player Ivor Slaney (1921-1998), and it is possible that he was conducting the anonymous "Carnival Orchestra" in Beguine For Lovers by Joseph Francis Kuhn (1924-1962).

Jerome Kern"s "Show Boat" premiered in New York in 1927, but it will have been more familiar to most people through the several film versions that followed. Can"t Help Loving That Man is one of the enduring songs from the show, performed for us here by Mantovani conducting his orchestra for his last Decca mono sessions in 1957.

Ruth Etting introduced Take Me In Your Arms back in 1932. Leroy Holmes (born Alvin Holmes, 1913-1986) scored Hollywood films and radio programmes during his early career, before becoming one of the mainstays of MGM"s conducting "team", also arranging many of their recordings. Eventually he moved on to United Artists where he conducted many of their contract singers and also recorded albums under his own name. His screen credits include the films "The Bridge In The Jungle" (1970) and "Smile" (1975).

If I Should Fall In Love Again won Jack Popplewell the first prize in a 1940 newspaper competition, launching his successful songwriting career. Peter Yorke (1902-1966) is a regular contributor to this series of CDs, as composer, arranger and conductor. After an apprenticeship 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.

Tenderly became a standard soon after it was published in 1946. London-born David Rose (1910-1990) was one of the truly great light orchestra leaders in the USA, and his compositions such as Holiday For Strings (on Guild GLCD 5120) and The Stripper sold millions. Over forty of his recordings have already been featured on previous Guild CDs.

Trevor Duncan (real name Leonard Charles Trebilco, 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 - Dancing In The Starlight was published by Charles Brull.

Sigmund Romberg"s operetta "The Student Prince", first produced in 1924, gained a new lease of life when MGM filmed it for the second time in 1954. Cinemagoers witnessed Mario Lanza"s strident tenor voice coming from Edmund Purdom"s lips, after the producers dropped Lanza in the starring role because he had put on too much weight. Deep In My Heart, Dear was one of many fine songs in the score, and William Hill-Bowen (1918-1964) arranged it beautifully for the George Melachrino (1909-1965) Orchestra.

Jackie Gleason (1916-1987) was an American comedian, actor and would-be musician, although apparently he could not read or write music. His name appeared on many top-selling Capitol LPs, but legend has it that he did not conduct the music and his input was restricted to merely suggesting ideas that he conceived in his head and persuaded others to write down for him. It seems that it was Gleason"s concepts for each album that were the main selling points, and a shroud of secrecy descended upon the actual arrangers, soloists and conductors. An exception was the trumpeter Robert Leo "Bobby" Hackett (1915-1976), an Americanjazzmusician who had played with the bands of Glenn Miller and Benny Goodman, and solos on You"re My Thrill.

Star Eyes was composed for an unmemorable 1943 MGM "potboiler" "By Hook Or By Crook" (original US title "I Dood It"). The song managed to outlive the movie, and it is given a creditable performance by Cyril Stapleton (1914-1974), who was a well-known orchestra leader in Britain and overseas during the 1950s and 1960s, thanks to his regular BBC broadcasts and his many recordings.

In the USA Frank De Vol (1911-1999) is known primarily as the composer for the radio and TV series "The Brady Bunch", but light music fans appreciate that his career has been far more substantial. It was not uncommon to see the credit "Music by De Vol" on many films, and he had an executive position at Columbia Records, for whom he made a number of successful mood music albums. The continental melody If She Should Come To You enjoyed modest success - partly due to Alec Wilder"s English lyrics.

Frank Cordell (1918-1980) was a fine English composer, arranger and conductor whose work first became noticed through the tuneful backings he often supplied to some contract singers on HMV singles in the 1950s. Occasionally he was allowed his own 78s, and he was also responsible for several distinctive LPs which quickly became collectors" items. The cinema beckoned with some prestigious projects and he was nominated for an Oscar for his work on "Cromwell" (1970). For Those Who Love was originally composed as the music behind a famous soap powder TV commercial in the UK.

Mario Nascimbene (1913-2002) scored numerous international films from the 1940s until his last in 1982, with the most notable including "The Vikings", "Alexander the Great" and "Room at the Top". Sons And Lovers (1960) was based on a novel by D.H. Lawrence about a young Nottinghamshire miner"s growing pains, and the version of the theme by Johnny Gregory (born Giovanni Gregori, 1924) fully exploits the lovely melody.

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. Amor is one of his earliest commercial recordings, which he conducted in Chicago for US Decca on 20 April 1944.

The German composer Paul Lincke (1866-1946) became known around the world for his Glow Worm (there are different versions on GLCD5106 and 5143), but this was just one number in a large body of musical works. His waltz The Wedding Dance is conducted by Eric Rogers (1921-1981) who is best remembered for scoring several "Carry On" films, although he was involved with numerous other projects in Britain and the USA.

Yorkshireman Geoff Love (1917-1991) succeeded in so many musical fields during his busy career. Internationally he achieved success as "Manuel and his Music of the Mountains" although his identity was a closely-kept secret for many years. His 1960 recording of The Wedding Song (which Geoff himself composed under the pseudonym "Horan") provides a fitting finale for this collection of music for romantics and lovers of all ages. 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 2010

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For 2010:

LIGHT MUSIC CDs DECEMBER 2010

GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5173

The Pianist In The Spotlight

1 Love Letters (Victor Young, arr. George Greeley)
GEORGE GREELEY, Piano and Orchestra
Warner Bros WS 1319 1959
2 Near You (Francis Craig)
ROGER WILLIAMS, HIS PIANO AND ORCHESTRA
London HA-R 2155 1958
3 Because You’re Mine (Sammy Cahn; Nicholas Brodszky, arr. Paul Weston)
PAUL WESTON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CS 8042 1958
4 Nothing Ever Changes My Love For You (Marvin Fisher; Jack Segal, arr. George Shearing and Billy May)
GEORGE SHEARING, Piano with BILLY MAY AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Capitol T 858 1957
5 Concerto (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA with DON FERRIS, Piano
MGM SE 3748 1959
6 The Way You Look Tonight (from film "Swing Time") (Jerome Kern)
JOE "Mr Piano" HENDERSON, Piano with BILL SHEPHERD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Pye NSPL 83006 1959
7 Soft Sands (Lou Stein)
LOU STEIN, PIANO - with BILL FONTAINE’S ORCHESTRA
London HLZ 8419 1957
8 Silly Billy (Norman [Norrie] William Paramor)
NORRIE PARAMOR AND HIS ORCHESTRA featuring NORRIE PARAMOR, Piano
Columbia DB 4004 1957
9 Invitation Waltz (from "Ring Round The Moon") (Richard Addinsell)
SEMPRINI, Piano and Orchestra
HMV POP 384 1957
10 Carnavalito (Edmundo Porteno Zaldivar)
PIERRE DORSEY, HIS PIANO AND ORCHESTRA
Polygon P 1083 1953
11 Vendetta (Ken Jones; Chris Armstrong, better known as Ray Martin)
WINIFRED ATWELL, Piano with CYRIL ORNADEL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Philips PB 332 1954
12 Georgian Rumba (Ivor Slaney)
DOLORES VENTURA, Piano – with Accompaniment Directed by IVOR SLANEY
Parlophone R 4160 1956
13 Can I Forget You (Jerome Kern, arr. Robert Farnon)
ROBERT FARNON AND HIS ORCHESTRA featuring BILLMcGUFFIE, Piano
Decca LK 4083 1954
14 My Ship (from "Lady In The Dark") (Kurt Weill, arr. Morton Gould)
MORTON GOULD, Piano, AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia ML 4657 1953
15 Legend (Robert Docker)
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO featuring WILLIAM HILL-BOWEN, Piano
HMV C 4038 1950
16 Heart And Soul (Hoagy Carmichael)
ROBERTO INGLEZ AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 3640 1953
17 Starlight (Otto Cesana)
OTTO CESANA AND HIS ORCHESTRA featuring BERNIE LEIGHTON, Piano
Columbia CL 631 1955
18 Punch And Judy Polka (Ronald George Munro)
BILLY MAYERL RHYTHM ENSEMBLE
Parlophone F 2449 1951
19 Mediterranean Concerto (Alberto Fernando Riccardo Semprini)
SIDNEY TORCH AND HIS ORCHESTRA(pianist uncredited on disc label)
R 3313 1950
20 Jungle Bird (Maurice Burman, arr. Stanley Black)
STANLEY BLACK, HIS PIANO AND ORCHESTRA
Decca LF 1055 1951
21 While A Cigarette Was Burning (Charles F. Kenny; Nick A. Kenny)
ART WANER Conducting THE LATIN QUARTER ORCHESTRA
MGM D 124 1954
22 City Centre (Robert Keys)
PALL MALL REVELLERS
Bosworth BC 1080 1939
23 "Mr. Dodd Takes The Air" – Film Selection Am I In Love, Remember Me (Al Dubin; Harry Warren)
CARROLL GIBBONS, piano - AND HIS BOY FRIENDS
Columbia FB 1870 1938
24 At The Court Of Old King Cole (Raie Da Costa)
RAIE DA COSTA, Piano, with RAY NOBLE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 6496 1934
Stereo: tracks 1, 3, 4, 5 & 6 ; other tracks mono.

In this collection it is the turn of pianists to take centre stage. Some of them will be familiar as famous solo artists, while others fronted their own groups or small ensembles which bear their name. Occasionally there are the unsung heroes whose work in orchestras often goes unnoticed, although they would surely be missed if they suddenly disappeared.

George Greeley (born Georgio Guariglia, 1917-2007) was an American pianist, conductor and composer who worked extensively in films and television, and made numerous recordings – often accompanying leading artists such as Gordon MacRae, Jane Powell and Jane Froman. During his early career he arranged for popular bandleaders such as Tommy Dorsey. In the 1950s he was a staff pianist at Columbia Pictures, and received particular praise for his work on "On The Waterfront" (1954) and "The Eddy Duchin Story" (1956). In later years he performed as piano soloist and guest conductor with leading orchestras in many countries.

Roger Williams (born Louis Weertz, 1924) is known in his native USA as "The Pianist To The Presidents", because he has been invited so many times to perform at the White House. Undoubtedly he is one of the most popular pianists of his generation, having achieved many hit records, including Near You - the choice for his first appearance on a Guild CD.

Paul Weston (born Paul Wetstein 1912-1996) was originally a pianist, although his particular favourites were saxes and clarinets. When recovering from an accident he was unable to perform so he tried arranging, which proved to be the spur for his future career fronting a world famous orchestra. Because You’re Mine allows us to hear his mastery of the keyboard. In 1971 the Trustees of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences gave its Trustees Award to Paul Weston.

If anyone deserves to be called a ‘Living Legend’ it is surely George Shearing (b. 1919), who became ‘Sir George’ in 2007 when he received his knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace. His unique style of playing has won him countless friends and admirers for over half a century, and he has worked with just about everyone who matters in show business. Choosing a suitable title for his first appearance on Guild was made relatively easy when he teamed up with Billy May (1916-2004) – who showed that he could write just as well for strings as for the big band style that made him famous.

David Rose (1910-1990) needs no introduction to regular Guild Light Music friends. Born in London, his family moved to Chicago in the USA when he was four, and during his prolific career he became one of the biggest names in radio, films, television and – of course – records. Holiday For Strings (on Guild GLCD5120) gave his career a sudden boost in the early 1940s, and it proved to be one of the first of a string of memorable compositions that kept flowing from his fertile inspiration. Concerto is perhaps more laid back than many of them, but its glorious harmonies provide the perfect backdrop to the piano of Don Ferris. Composer and pianist Ferris (born Dominic Anthony Frissore, 1919-2006) served in the US Army during World War II, and was a staff organist in the Armed Forces Radio Service where he would have come into contact with Sgt. David Rose. After working for two years as a staff pianist in film studios, Ferris became pianist for the David Rose Orchestra in 1946.

Joe "Mr Piano" Henderson (born in Glasgow, 1920-1980) was a professional dance band pianist at the age of fifteen. During the 1950s he became well-known in Britain, partly due to his friendship with singer Petula Clark, whom he had first met in 1947 at the Peter Maurice music publishers. His biggest hit was his own composition Trudie in 1957, which won him an Ivor Novello Award.

Lou Stein (1922-2002) was an American jazz pianist whose credentials included working with the likes of Glenn Miller, Percy Faith, Jackie Gleason and Benny Goodman – among many other famous names in jazz and popular music. His own melody Soft Sands (on this CD) also received the honour of a recording by Oscar Peterson.

Londoner Norman William (Norrie) Paramor (1914-1979) tended to be better known by the public for his work with pop stars on EMI’s Columbia label, but he also made numerous instrumental recordings and wrote several catchy numbers that greatly appealed, such as his own Silly Billy.

Although his numerous British fans considered him to be Italian, the pianist and composer Semprini was actually born in Bath, Somerset, where his Italian parents named him Alberto Fernando Riccardo Semprini (1908-1990). No doubt his attractive accent was partly due to the time he spent studying music at the Verdi Conservatory in Milan, from which he graduated in 1928. He was a frequent broadcaster, and he used his own composition Mediterranean Concerto as his theme. Surprisingly the Sidney Torch (1908-1990) recording heard on this CD did not mention the name of the pianist on the disc label. At that time Torch’s pianist was often Edward Rubach, and one would have expected him to be credited. This leads to speculation that the composer may have been at the keyboard, or maybe even Sidney Torch himself who was a piano virtuoso as well as a famous organist..

Pierre Dorsey joins our roster of pianists in the catchy novelty Carnavalito. He made a few recordings in the 1950s, but his career does not seem to have lasted.

Among the most successful in terms of hit records was Winifred Atwell (born Una Winifred Atwell,1914-1983) who hailed from the West Indies. During her variety appearances she performed first on a traditional grand piano, then her ‘other’ piano (discovered in a London junk shop) was wheeled on stage allowing her to play the boogie woogie and ragtime tunes that became her trademark. But she was also an accomplished concert pianist, and had studied at London’s Royal Academy of Music where she became the first female pianist to be awarded the Academy’s top grades. In Vendetta she is backed by Cyril Ornadel (b. 1924) and his Orchestra reprising their previous contribution to a Guild CD (Moonlight Fiesta on GLCD5111). Ornadel rose to prominence in Britain during the 1950s, largely due to his weekly appearances conducting the orchestra for the popular television series "Sunday Night at the London Palladium".

Dolores Ventura enjoyed a busy performing and recording career in Britain during the 1950s, sometimes with an orchestra conducted by her husband Ivor Slaney (1921-1998). He was also a successful composer and a fine oboe player, regularly doing session work under top conductors such as Robert Farnon. Four of Slaney’s accomplishments come together in Georgian Rumba: firstly the pianist is his wife; secondly he composed the melody; thirdly he can be heard on oboe – and on top of all that he conducts his orchestra. His previous compositions featured in Guild are Country Canter (GLCD5164), Donkey Doodle (GLCD5131) and The Show Goes On (GLGD5149). His more serious works include a Brazilian Suite and an Oboe Concerto.

William [Bill] McGuffie (1927-1987) is remembered by most music lovers as a fine pianist, often leaning towards jazz, although his occasional work in films proved that he was also a talented composer. His success is all the more impressive, when you consider that the third finger of his right hand was amputated in childhood following an accident. He never let this become a handicap, and in later life he founded his own charity The Niner Club (named after his number of fingers) which raised money for autistic children. During his long career he was the pianist of choice for many leading conductors, and Robert Farnon (1917-2005) was no exception – creating a special arrangement of Can I Forget You to showcase his talents.

Morton Gould (1913-1996) became one of the most highly respected American composers, and his distinguished career was crowned with a Pulitzer Prize (for his Stringmusic, commissioned by Mstislav Rostropovich for the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington) just a year before his death at the age of 82. He generally arranged the works he conducted in the concert hall and on records, and his brilliance as a sensitive pianist shines through every bar of the Kurt Weill classic My Ship. From 1986 to 1994 Gould was President of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).

Robert Docker (1918-1992) became known to the British public through his many broadcasts as a pianist, but he was also a prolific arranger and composer. His Legend entered the repertoire of many light orchestras, and the George Melachrino (1909-1965) version for HMV was regarded by many as the definitive version.

Roberto Inglez was actually a Scotsman called Robert Inglis (1919-1974) who specialised in Latin American music. He built up a loyal following through his work in leading London West End clubs and his frequent BBC broadcasts.

Italian born Otto Cesana (1899-1980) spent much of his early career in California where he lived from 1908 to 1930. His piano studies commenced at the age of ten, and he became an accomplished organist; he also learned about orchestration and harmony which he put to good use working in radio and Hollywood film studios. Although his recorded output was not large compared with some of his contemporaries, he usually conducted his own compositions which were of a consistently high standard – as already illustrated on several previous Guild Light Music CDs. The pianist in Starlight is Bernie Leighton (1921-1994), mainly recognised as a jazz player who worked with Percy Faith and numerous singers, bands and orchestras from the late 1930s into the 1980s.

Billy Joseph Mayerl (1902-1959) was a Londoner whose expertise on the piano gained him international recognition. Although perhaps best-known for his own cameos (often syncopated), during his regular broadcasts he played numbers by many fellow composers - such as Punch And Judy Polka by Ronald George Munro (better known as Ronnie, 1807-1989). In an extremely varied career, Munro had led a dance band during the twenties and thirties, becoming the first conductor of the Scottish Variety Orchestra when it was established by the BBC in 1940. Later he formed his own light orchestra for radio in the fifties, concluding his BBC career with a sextet which he led between 1962 and 1967. When radio broadcasts of live music in Britain dried up, he moved to South Africa, where he reformed his orchestra, subsequently becoming Head of Light Music for S.A.B.C.

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.

Pianist Art Waner conducted the orchestra at the famous Latin Quarter nightclub, located at 159 Palm Island Drive, Miami Beach. From the 1940s into the 1960s this was a Mecca for top entertainers such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Tony Bennett performing for winter crowds of tourists wishing to escape to the Florida sunshine.

City Centre is an early composition by Robert Keys (1914-1999), who went on to become a repetiteur then assistant head of the music staff at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, which he joined in 1953. He was widely respected in the profession and a key back-room figure in helping turn Covent Garden into a house of international standing. Previously he had worked with Benjamin Britten at his English Opera Group in Aldeburgh. Such was his reputation that he received many invitations to work on special projects overseas. In retirement he continued to coach young singers, and was secretary of the Robert Stolz Society.

Although he was born in Clinton, Massachusetts, the pianist and composer Carroll Gibbons (1903-1954) made his career mainly in England, which apparently impressed him while studying at the Royal Academy of Music in his late teens. He became associated with the Savoy Hotel Orpheans, but briefly returned to the USA in 1931 where he spent two years with MGM in Hollywood. One of his most popular compositions was Garden In The Rain (Ray Martin’s version is on Guild GLCD5135) which received the accolade of a recording by Frank Sinatra with the Robert Farnon Orchestra in 1962.

The daughter of Portuguese parents, Raie Da Costa (1905-1934) was born in Cape Town, where she studied dancing and music. She wanted to become a ballerina, but an accident forced her to forget this childhood ambition so she concentrated on the piano. In 1924 her mother brought her from South Africa to London, but initially it was hard to get classical engagements. A wise change of career found her concentrating on rhythmic popular numbers, and a recording contract was secured in 1928. From then on she was always busy with broadcasting, stage shows and, of course, records. She was considered by many to be one of the most talented pianists of the time, with an incredible left-hand technique. Sadly she died at the young age of 29 from a cruel illness in 1934, not long after she had recorded her own composition At The Court Of Old King Cole which is the final track in this collection.

David Ades

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5174

The Lost Transcriptions – Volume 1

1 Strike Up The Band (George & Ira Gershwin, probably arranged by Sidney Torch)
RAF CONCERT ORCHESTRA probably conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
ORBS Cut 2448 (2EN 9358) Issue MK 4943 1944
2 "Swing Time" Selection (Jerome Kern; Dorothy Fields, probably arranged by Len Stevens) The Way You Look Tonight, Pick Yourself Up, A Fine Romance, Waltz In Swing Time.
RAF CONCERT ORCHESTRA probably conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
ORBS Cut 173 (2EN 3640) Issue MK 4570 late 1942 or early 1943
3 Ragging The Scales (Edward B. Claypole, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
OA PO 104 1950s
4 The Butterfly And The Alligator (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
World Programme Service (Australia) 006 c1943
5 If You Please (from the film "Dixie") (Jimmy Van Heusen, arr. Sidney Torch)
SIDNEY TORCH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Towers of London Transcription Disc c1951
6 Primavera (Jupe Elders)
DOLF VAN DER LINDEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Thesaurus Orthacoustic 1773 1953
7 Pepper Tree Lane (from "Hollywood Bowl Suite") (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
World Programme Service (Australia) 006 c1943
8 Balboa Barcarolle (Vernon Duke, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
VOA PO 125 1950s
9 La Bamba De Vera Cruz – Mexican Dance (Traditional, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
VOA PO 88 1947
10 Song Of The Flame (from the musical "Song Of The Flame") (George Gershwin; Herbert Stothart)
PHIL SPITALNY AND HIS ALL GIRL ORCHESTRA
Thesaurus Orthacoustic 1871 1954
11 Too Romantic (from "Road To Singapore") (Johnny Burke; James V. Monaco)
LEITH STEVENS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Standard Program Library Z-267 1949
12 Flying Down To Rio (Edward Eliscu; Gus Kahn; Vincent Youmans)
CARMEN DRAGON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
World Programme Service (Australia) 099 c1945
13 Solitude (Edgar de Lange; Irving Mills; Edward Kennedy (‘Duke’) Ellington; arr. Len Stevens)
RAF CONCERT ORCHESTRA probably conducted by SIDNEY TORCH (solo violin Lou Whiteson)
ORBS Cut 962 (2EN 5926) Issue No. MK 3105 1943
14 Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead (from "The Wizard Of Oz") (Harold Arlen; E.Y. Harburg)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
World Programme Service (Australia) 671 c1943
15 The Peanut Vendor (El Manisero) (Moises Simons; Marion Sunshine; L. Wolfe Gilbert)
THE ORCHESTRA IN KHAKI Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
ORBS Cut 3158 (2EN 12663) Issue MK 5593 1945
16 Jota (from "Spanish Dance Suite") (Anthony Collins)
WORLD CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by PHILIP GREEN
World Program Service 10397 c1955
"Three Sketches" (Don Gillis)
17 Enchantment
18 Whimsy
19 Day Dreams
HOLLYWOOD SALON ORCHESTRA Conducted by HARRY BLUESTONE
Standard Program Library T-273 1949
20 Dance Of The Frogs (based on Frog Went A-Courtin’) (Lamar Stringfield)
LEWIS WILLIAMS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Standard Radio Transcription Services Z 250 1949
21 Praeludium (Armas Järnefelt)
ARMY SALON ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERIC ROBINSON
ORBS Cut 2793 (2EN 10538) Issue MK 5509 1944
"The Three Men" Suite (Eric Coates)
22 1 The Man From The Country
THE ORCHESTRA IN KHAKI Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
ORBS Cut 1303 (2EN 6812) Issue MK 3558 1943
23 2 The Man About Town
THE ORCHESTRA OF H.M. ROYAL MARINES (PORTSMOUTH DIVISION) Conducted by Captain F VIVIAN DUNN, MVO ARAM RM
ORBS Cut 1817 (2EN 8104) Issue MK 4194 1944
24 3 The Man From The Sea
THE ORCHESTRA OF H.M. ROYAL MARINES (PORTSMOUTH DIVISION) Conducted by Captain F VIVIAN DUNN, MVO ARAM RM
ORBS Cut 1820 (2EN 8105) Issue MK 4195 1944
25 Romantic Overture (Overture Romantique) (Kéler Béla)
THE ORCHESTRA OF THE ROYAL MARINES (PORTSMOUTH DIVISION) Conducted by Captain F VIVIAN DUNN, MVO ARAM RM
ORBS Cuts 2982/3 (2EN 11563/4) Issue MK 6029 probably recorded no later than 1945

 

What are ‘Transcriptions’ and why have they been ‘lost’? Regular purchasers of Guild Light Music CDs will already be aware that a lot of music is specially recorded by music publishers for the entertainment industry, and only rarely does it become available to the general public via commercial recordings. Numerous gems from this vast pool of light music have already appeared on Guild CDs, and many more await rediscovery.

There is another resource of fascinating material available on Transcription Recordings. Generally speaking the term refers to recordings of live performances made for use by broadcasting organisations before the advent of audio tape. With so many small radio stations all over the USA needing music to fill their schedules, it is not surprising that the major providers of transcription recordings were based in America, although broadcasters and publishers in Britain and Europe soon realised the potential of making their output available to a world-wide audience.

Some names became familiar within broadcasting circles: apart from the majors such as the BBC, transcriptions were issued by Standard, World, Thesaurus and Lang-Worth, to name just a few. The discs came in various sizes - 7" to 12" were usually 78 rpm but the 16" ones were often recorded at 33⅓ rpm, pre-dating the launch of the LP on the domestic market by many years.

During World War 2 transcriptions became commonplace in the USA and they were distributed to American forces via the AFRS (Armed Forces Radio Service) and broadcast by many other services including AFN (American Forces Network) and AEFP (Allied Expeditionary Forces Programme). Britain established The British Forces Network (BFN) and The Army Welfare Department created The Overseas Recorded Broadcasting Service (ORBS) to record and distribute recordings for use by BFN, other broadcasters and ENSA (Entertainments National Service Association). As well as providing live entertainment the latter was able to reach small groups of servicemen in remote areas by playing the recordings over PA systems installed in vans.

None of these wartime transcription discs were for sale, the intention being that they would be destroyed when the war ended. Fortunately some servicemen decided to keep them as souvenirs, preserving for posterity a unique record of the kind of music that played an important part in the morale of fighting troops. Some of the recordings were significant because they paired performers who were contracted to different record companies, thus making similar commercial release impossible.

The sound quality of these discs is generally good, and modern digital restoration makes them very enjoyable. Only occasionally are there slight traces of distortion, which cannot be removed completely, but their historical importance dictates that they should not be rejected for such minor imperfections.

Armed Services bands and orchestras proliferated during World War 2 but today’s researchers find it extremely difficult to discover hard facts about many of them and, although it is well known that Sidney Torch (1908-1990) conducted The RAF Concert Orchestra, detailed information about this orchestra is almost non-existent.

When Torch was called up for war service in 1941 he was posted to Blackpool where there was a large Royal Air Force Unit that provided entertainment for the tens of thousands of other service personnel in the area. Regular shows by and for the forces were produced at several Blackpool theatres, notably The Opera House, The Grand Theatre and The Winter Gardens where, as Corporal Sidney Torch, he conducted accompanying orchestras of various sizes as well as continuing to make commercial recordings on The Opera House organ. Contemporary theatre programmes show that many well known names from the world of light music were involved with these orchestras, including Leading Aircraftman Len Stevens (responsible for many of the arrangements), Aircraftman Norrie Paramor (who played piano and also arranged), Aircraftman Lou Whiteson (who usually led the orchestra and sometimes conducted) and Aircraftman Ronald Binge (who conducted the station choir, which regularly performed with the orchestra). Although we know that Solitude was arranged by Len Stevens (and the Swing Time selection is probably his work from an RAF radio series called "March Of The Movies"), it is the opinion of several light music experts who have listened to other recordings by the orchestra that the majority are probably Sidney Torch arrangements. It is also very likely that he conducted them but, as Peter Yorke made at least one ORBS recording with the orchestra, we cannot be sure.

The labels on the discs are of little help, since there is no mention of the arrangers or the conductors. Indeed, Swing Time is credited to the RAF Theatre Orchestra but, as matrix numbers confirm it was recorded at the same time as some of the Concert Orchestra pieces, it is reasonable to assume that it is the same orchestra.

By the time the last RAF Concert Orchestra recordings were made Torch had been promoted to the rank of Flying Officer and he was changing his career, from being one of Britain’s finest theatre organists during the 1930s, to a leading light music composer and conductor following his discharge from the RAF in the mid-1940s. These recordings possibly offer a unique snapshot of a period when he was honing his skills as an arranger – something at which he would excel during the following decades, most notably fronting the BBC Concert Orchestra in the radio series "Friday Night Is Music Night".

Details of Percy Faith’s "Voice Of America" recordings are as scarce as those for the RAF Concert Orchestra. VOA issued hundreds of 16" discs to the armed forces featuring Faith and other popular orchestras of the day such as Richard Maltby, Andre Kostelanetz and David Rose. They contained re-issues of their commercial recordings, alternate and out-takes of these recordings and, in Percy Faith’s case, slightly different arrangements of numerous pieces he had recorded commercially. But of most interest are the recordings unique to VOA, three of which are featured here. It has not been possible to date two of them accurately as surviving VOA programme logs only go up to 1950 but, using the dates of the commercial recordings which are on some of the discs as a guide, they are probably from between 1951 and 1955.

David Rose (1910-1990) needs no introduction to regular Guild Light Music friends. Born in London, his family moved to the USA when he was four, and during his prolific career he became one of the biggest names in radio, films, television and – of course – records. Holiday For Strings (on Guild GLCD5120) gave his career a sudden boost in the early 1940s, and it proved to be one of the first of a string of memorable compositions that kept flowing from his fertile inspiration. His first appearance in this collection introduces us to a previously unknown composition The Butterfly And The Alligator. It seems to be unpublished – the reason may possibly be due to the fact that the ‘alligator’ theme was later used by Rose in his composition Satan And The Polar Bear (on Guild GLCD5105). The "Hollywood Bowl Suite" is Rose’s tribute to the famous open air arena (opened on 11 July 1922) where so many top performers have appeared – including Tom and Jerry! Pepper Tree Lane is the street at the entrance to the complex (some maps show the name as ‘Peppertree’). David Rose’s second wife was Judy Garland, and he probably made this somewhat bizarre yet appealing arrangement of Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead (from her most famous film) during the brief period when they were happily married.

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. 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’.

Many people think of all-girl bands as a World War 2 phenomenon made necessary because of the draft, but musical ensembles consisting of all female players had existed since the 1920s. Ukraine-born Phil Spitalny (1890-1970) fronted a 22-piece orchestra that had 20 years (1934-1954) of coast to coast success in the USA which included concerts, movies and network radio sponsorships. On radio he was introduced as Phil Spitalny and his All-Girl Orchestra featuring Evelyn and her Magic Violin. She was Evelyn Kaye Klein, who helped Spitalny find the women he needed, involving auditions of more than 1,000 musicians mainly in New York and Chicago. Spitalny and Evelyn married in 1946. In later years he retired to Miami and became a music critic for a local newspaper.

Leith Stevens (1909-1970) was an American composer and conductor, best-known for his work in radio and films and television. During World War 2 he was radio director for the Southwest Pacific Area with the US Office of War Information. Later in Hollywood his most notable scores were for space dramas such as "Destination Moon " (1950), "When Worlds Collide" (1951) and "The War of the Worlds" (1953). He worked on hundreds of productions during his long career, and his name cropped up in the credits for numerous TV series especially in the 1960s.

Carmen Dragon (1914-1984) was born in Antioch, California. His first success in Hollywood was collaborating with Morris Stoloff (1898-1980) arranging Jerome Kern’s score for the 1944 Rita Hayworth/Gene Kelly film "Cover Girl" which secured him an Oscar. He worked extensively in radio and television, and was a frequent visitor to recording studios conducting the Hollywood Bowl and Capitol Symphony Orchestras.

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. He was also in demand as a singer, and can be heard on recordings with Carroll Gibbons and others. During World War 2 he became Musical Director of the Army Radio Unit, and his 50-piece ‘Orchestra in Khaki’ toured with the ‘Stars in Battledress’. Melachrino was also a regular broadcaster on the Allied Expeditionary Forces Programme of the BBC, alongside Major Glenn Miller and Captain Robert Farnon. Post-war he used most of his wartime musicians to form his world famous Melachrino Orchestra, and there are hints of what was to come in the inventive arrangement (by Melachrino?) of The Peanut Vendor. In a display of its versatility, we later hear the same orchestra performing the first movement of Eric Coates’ "Three Men Suite".

It is hardly surprising to discover that Philip Green (born Harry Philip Green, 1911-1982) was involved in transcriptions, since this apparently compulsive worker was responsible for numerous broadcasts, film scores and compositions during a career lasting from the 1920s to the 1980s. His work is already well-represented on Guild Light Music CDs. Jota is a rarely heard piece by Anthony Collins (1893-1963), better known for his Vanity Fair (on GLCD5120).

Harry Bluestone (1907-1992) was born in England, but he made his successful career in the USA where he composed and conducted music for films and television. In this collection he conducts Three Sketches, a rare work by the American composer Don Gillis (1912-1978), whose music is probably receiving more attention from record companies today than it did during his lifetime. Today his best known composition was his tongue-in-cheek "Symphony No. 5½ - A Symphony For Fun". The first movement Perpetual Emotion is on Guild GLCD5156.

Lamar Stringfield (1897-1959) composed symphonic works based on American folk-lore, and judging by Dance Of The Frogs they were not without a touch of humour. He was awarded the Pulitizer prize for his orchestral suite "From the Southern Mountains." In 1932 Stringfield united a group of volunteers to form the North Carolina Symphony, and a Lamar Stringfield Society has been established in his honour.

Eric Robinson (1908-1974) was a personality during the formative years of BBC Television. After 4 years spent playing violin with the BBC Theatre Orchestra he joined The BBC Television Orchestra, which was formed in 1936 and conducted by Hyam Greenbaum. When BBC Television closed down for the duration of World War 2, like so many conscripted musicians, his talents were employed to good use and, on this CD, we hear him conducting the Army Salon Orchestra in Järnefelt’s famous Praeludium. When normal service was resumed after the war, Robinson became the conductor of the BBC Television Orchestra, and was soon a household name through his monthly show "Music For You". Later he went into partnership with George Melachrino and became Managing Director of the Melachrino organisation. His elder brother was the famous conductor Stanford Robinson (1904-1984). Edvard Armas Järnefelt (1869-1958) was a Finnish composer and conductor who became a Swedish citizen in 1909, where he worked for the rest of his life.

The final three tracks feature the Orchestra Of The Royal Marines (Portsmouth Division) conducted by Captain Vivian Dunn, their Director of Music from 1931 to 1953, in which year he was promoted to be Principal Director Of Music, Royal Marines, with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. Here they perform the second and third movements of "The Three Men Suite" by Eric Coates (1886-1957) which appropriately includes the movement The Man From The Sea.

This collection ends with an attractive concert overture by Kéler Béla (also known as Adalbert Paul von Kéler 1820-1882), a Hungarian composer and conductor well known in Europe during his lifetime. As a young man he played violin in a theatre orchestra in Vienna, but he was soon conducting in Berlin and in 1856 became Bandmaster of the 10th Austrian Infantry Regiment. During the latter part of his life he undertook concert tours in Germany, Denmark, Switzerland and England. He composed reasonably prolifically including twelve concert overtures, among them Lustspiel (his most popular work on GLCD5134), and his Overture Romantique which closes this CD. Béla also wrote numerous shorter pieces, including waltzes, galops, polkas, marches and mazurkas. His colourful music, and especially some of the overtures, remained popular well into the 20th century.

David Ades

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LIGHT MUSIC CDs SEPTEMBER 2010

GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5171

War And Peace : Light Music Of The 1940s

1 Down The Mall (John Belton, real names Tony Lowry and Douglas Brownsmith)
CHARLES SHADWELL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 9487 1946
2 Stardust (Hoagy Carmichael, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca 23535 1944
3 Footlights (Eric Coates)
LIGHT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERIC COATES
Columbia DX 966 1940
4 Spitfire Fugue – from the film “The First Of The Few” (William Walton)
HALLÉ ORCHESTRA Conducted by WILLIAM WALTON solo violin:
Laurance Turner
HMV C 3359 1943
5 A Cocktail Of Happiness (Wynford Reynolds)
WYNFORD REYNOLDS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca Music While You Work MW 130 1944
6 Girls In Grey (Charles Williams)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 193 1943
7 Humoresque (Antonin Dvorák)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV B 9494 1946
8 “El Alamein” – Concerto for Piano and Orchestra (Albert Arlen, born Albert Aarons)
JACK PAYNE AND HIS ORCHESTRA with PEGGY COCHRANE, piano
HMV C 3428 1945
9 On A Spring Note (Sidney Torch, real name Sidney Torchinsky)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Chappell C 300 1947
10 Boogie Woogie Moonshine (from the film “Piccadilly Incident”)
LOUIS LEVY AND HIS ‘MUSIC FROM THE MOVIES’ pianist HENRY BRONKHURST
Decca K 1559 1946
11 Voice Of Industry – March (Jack Beaver)
THE NEW CENTURY ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Francis, Day & Hunter FDH 002 1946
12 Willie The Whistler (Robert Farnon)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Chappell C 259 1946
13 Starlight Roof Waltz (George Melachrino)
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
HMV B 9610 1948
14 “A Matter Of Life And Death” – Prelude from the film (Allan Gray, real name Josef Zmigrod)
QUEEN’S HALL LIGHT ORCHESTRA Conducted by CHARLES WILLIAMS
Columbia DX 1320 1947
15 Olympic Games March (Ronald Hanmer)
NEW CENTURY ORCHESTRA Conducted by SIDNEY TORCH
Francis, Day & Hunter FDH 043 1948
16 The Fairy And The Fiddlers (Edward White)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by JAY WILBUR
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2047 1946
17 Bonaventure (Frederic Curzon)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by FREDERIC CURZON
Boosey & Hawkes O 2042 1946
18 American Serenade (Louis Alter)
MEREDITH WILLSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca DL 8025 1949
19 Marche Fantastique (Leighton Lucas)
LEIGHTON LUCAS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
EMI Mood Music EP 122 1948
20 Short Overture To An Unwritten Opera (Don Gillis)
NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA Conducted by RAE JENKINS
Boosey & Hawkes OT 2092 1946
21 Royal Cavalcade (Albert William Ketèlbey)
THE LOUIS VOSS GRAND ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1146 1942
22 Lullaby Of The Bells – Piano Concerto from the film “The Phantom Of The Opera” (Edward Ward)
MANTOVANI AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA featuring GUY FLETCHER, piano
Decca F 8460 1944

In retrospect it is clear that the 1940s had a major impact on the way in which Light Music would develop in the remaining years of the 20th Century. The somewhat genteel world in which many composers involved in the genre were living was shattered when World War 2 broke out in September 1939. Although their style of music would still be appreciated, it had to compete with other developments which would invigorate what some believed was a fading niche of the music scene. Light Music has never had an easy ride, and the fresh impetus provided in the 1940s would itself gradually wane – particularly in the 1970s and 1980s – until another welcome renaissance gathered pace in the 1990s. Although Light Music is not heard today on radio and in the concert hall to the extent that it once was, the paradox is that there has never been a time when there was such a wide choice available for the public to buy on commercial recordings.

Down The Mall is making its third appearance on a Guild CD, and we make no apology for selecting it as the opening number for a second time. It was first included in the second 1930s collection “In Town Tonight” (GLCD5116) played by Philip Green and his Orchestra, from a Parlophone 78 in the label’s ‘bright and breezy series’. But it has always been popular with brass bands, as the famous Fodens Motor Works Band illustrated in “Bandstand In The Park – Volume 2” (GLCD 5147). Essentially Down The Mall is a feel-good piece of light orchestral music, and on this CD it appears in the kind of arrangement (longer pieces in this style were sometimes called ‘concert arrangements’) that was so popular in the 1940s. The record label typically ignored the importance of the arranger, but there are sufficient clues in the music to link it to Peter Yorke (1902-1966), who regularly contributed such pieces for Charles Shadwell to conduct in the “ITMA” radio programme. The composer ‘John Belton’ was actually a partnership of Tony Lowry and Douglas Brownsmith (1902-1965). Charles Murray Winstanley Shadwell (1898-1979) could be heard regularly on BBC radio broadcasts during the 1940s, notably the afore-mentioned “ITMA” and “Music Hall” – the latter always ended with his own march Down with the Curtain (on Guild GLCD5135). Earlier in his career he had been conductor of the Coventry Hippodrome Orchestra, also represented previously on Guild.

By 1942 Albert William Ketèlbey (1875-1959) was no longer enjoying the success of earlier decades, when his pieces such as In a Monastery Garden, The Phantom Melody, In a Persian Market and Bells Across the Meadow had brought him international fame. But he was still writing well-crafted melodies, often for production music companies, as in the case of Royal Cavalcade, the penultimate track in this collection. Later the LP era of the 1950s brought a well-deserved revival of interest in his work. By comparison Eric Coates (1886-1957) frequently pleased the public with melodies in various styles – something he would continue until almost the end of his life with his famous Dam Busters march. Footlights finds him in familiar light-hearted territory, in stark contrast to what was happening in the real world when he conducted it in 1940.

Far more in keeping with the reality of the time was the film “The First Of The Few” which told the story of R.J. Mitchell, the designer of the Spitfire fighter aircraft which played a major role in the Battle of Britain, where Germany’s Luftwaffe was defeated by the Royal Air Force. William Walton’s score suited the film to perfection and the Fugue accompanied scenes of the aircraft’s construction and development. The Second World War was also the subject in “A Matter Of Life And Death”, although this was made when hostilities had ceased. Released in the USA as “Stairway To Heaven”, it was selected for the first post-war Royal Command Film Performance in 1946, and has since achieved cult status. Part of the credit must accrue to the music by Allan Gray (real name Josef Zmigrod, 1902-1973) who established his film scoring credentials in the German cinema before moving to England in 1936. His handful of notable scores included “I Know Where I’m Going” (1945), “This Man Is Mine” (1946) (on Guild GLCD 5109) and “The African Queen” (1952).

Still in 1946 we find Anna Neagle and Michael Wilding in “Piccadilly Incident”. Again the film is set in the Second World War, and the musical director was Anthony Collins (1893-1963). Boogie Woogie Moonshine lacks composer and arranger credits on the record label, but there are no prizes for spotting that Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata gets a look in, alongside the popular song You Are My Sunshine.

It was during 1941 that Teddy Holmes recruited Charles Williams (1893-1978) to prepare for the launch of the Chappell Recorded Music Library. When the first recordings became available for radio and films (especially wartime newsreels) in 1942, they were competing with existing mood music libraries operated by fellow London publishers Bosworth and Boosey & Hawkes. But Chappells soon became the leading provider of production music in the world – a position they were to hold for at least two decades. Williams recorded many of his own works, and Girls In Grey became instantly recognisable to millions through its use as the theme for the BBC’s Television Newsreel. Originally he had composed it as a wartime march for the Women’s Junior Air Corps.

On that momentous day in March 1942 when David Rose (1910-1990) took his orchestra into RCA Victor’s studios to record his own composition Holiday For Strings, could he have imagined the effect it would have on his peers? In one memorable recording session he proved that the general public did still enjoy Light Music, when it was performed with such enthusiasm and obvious enjoyment. It was hardly surprising that it sold over a million copies within a short while. He cleverly adapted his unique string sound for Humoresque. World War 2 also allowed musicians a freedom previously denied to them, in terms of players and the chance to experiment without financial constraints. Robert Farnon (1917-2005) and George Melachrino (1909-1965) were leaders respectively of the Canadian and British Bands of the Allied Expeditionary Forces. At their command they had many more musicians than they could have afforded in peacetime, and they embraced wholeheartedly the wonderful opportunity that had been gifted to them.

In Farnon’s case he recognised that the music scene in Britain was more suited to his talents than what existed back home, so he remained in London when he took his discharge in 1945. He brought vibrancy to Light Music that reflected his North American roots, and his influence on fellow composers and arrangers (both in Britain and America) was considerable. His very first piece for Chappell, Willie The Whistler, appears on this CD.

Melachrino kept many of his wartime musicians when he launched his own civilian orchestra, and he found that the public was happy to accept his glorious string sounds. On 23 October 1947 the revue “Starlight Roof” opened at the London Hippodrome, starring Vic Oliver and Pat Kirkwood with 12 year-old Julie Andrews in the cast. George Melachrino wrote the score for the show, from which his Starlight Roof Waltz has become a light music favourite.

Sidney Torch (1908-1990) was a famous cinema organist before war service in the Royal Air Force, where he conducted the RAF Concert Orchestra. When he left the forces he also recognised the great opportunities offered in Light Music, and he turned his back on the organ. His catchy On A Spring Note was a great success for the Chappell Mood Music Library, and the original version on this CD is longer than Torch’s commercial recording on Parlophone.

Thus the second half of the 1940s witnessed the return of many talented musicians to the demands of radio, television, films and recordings, and the influence of their wartime experiences resulted in some of the finest cameos of light orchestral music ever composed. Such was the quality of Light Music (not forgetting some landmark film scores) during the entire decade that volumes could be written about each of the composers and orchestras featured in this collection. As usual, space is the enemy, so these notes will have to concentrate on a few special cases where those involved may be less familiar to music lovers today.

El Alamein – Concerto for Piano and Orchestra received its first performance in Cairo, at the Earle Hall of the YMCA in October 1944, conducted by Hugo Rignold with Phil Finch on piano. It was composed by Flying Officer Albert Arlen, in dedication to the men who died at El Alamein in 1942 and 1943 during the North Africa campaign of the Second World War. Four months later, on 18 February 1945, Peggy Cochrane performed the broadcast premiere back in London. She was also a well-known singer and violinist and was married to bandleader Jack Payne (1899-1969). She studied at the Royal Academy of Music under Eric Coates and Lionel Tertis. Albert Arlen (1905-1993) was an Australian composer, playwright and director, born Albert Aarons in Sydney to Turkish immigrants. He worked in London from 1925 to 1940, when he joined the Royal Air Force as a pilot. He is best known in his home country for the musical “The Sentimental Bloke” (1960), and was appointed a member of the Order of Australia for services to music and the performing arts in 1990.

London hosted the first post-war Olympic Games in 1948, and the production music libraries commissioned several suitable marches which they hoped would be used extensively by film and newsreel companies. The prolific mood music composer Ronald Hanmer (1917-1994) is the choice for this collection, with his appropriately titled Olympic Games March from the Francis, Day & Hunter stable – note Sidney Torch again as conductor.

Hollywood was firmly in its glory days during the 1940s, and a good musical score was often regarded as essential. Edward Ward (1900-1971) adapted themes by Tchaikovsky and Chopin for the 1943 production of “The Phantom Of The Opera”, but the ‘Piano Concerto’ Lullaby Of The Bells, was his own composition. During a career lasting 37 years Ward received seven Oscar nominations – the last one being for this film. The fine recording on 12 June 1944 is one of the first employing Decca’s revolutionary ‘full frequency range recording’ system, developed originally to assist in the detection of enemy submarines; the comparison with the previous track recorded only two years earlier is quite amazing. Mantovani (1905-1980) is conducting a large concert orchestra in the days before his ‘cascading strings’ sound made him world famous. Other examples of his earlier work can be found on Guild GLCD5110 and 5113.
David Ades

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Some other fine music from the 1940s already on Guild CDs

All Strings And Fancy Free (Sidney Torch) GLCD5150
Carriage And Pair (Benjamin Frankel) GLCD5110
Coronation Scot (Vivian Ellis) GLCD5120
Devil's Galop (Charles Williams) GLCD5162
Down With The Curtain (Charles Shadwell) GLCD5135
Film Opens (King Palmer) GLCD5149
Glass Slipper - Overture (Clifton Parker) GLCD5107
Holiday For Strings (David Rose) GLCD5120
Horse Guards - Whitehall (Haydn Wood) GLCD5121
In Party Mood (Jack Strachey) GLCD5120
Jumping Bean (Robert Farnon) GLCD5162
London Fantasia (Clive Richardson) GLCD5120
Melody On The Move (Clive Richardson) GLCD5102
Picture Parade (Jack Beaver) GLCD5149
Portrait Of A Flirt (Robert Farnon) GLCD5120
Radio Romantic (Sidney Torch) GLCD5149
Rhythm On Rails (Charles Williams) GLCD5107
Runaway Rocking Horse (Edward White) GLCD5102
Seascape (Clifton Parker) GLCD5109
Shooting Star (Sidney Torch) GLCD5162
Television March (Eric Coates) GLCD5104
Tropical (Morton Gould) GLCD5101
Up With The Lark (Robert Busby) GLCD5150
Warsaw Concerto (Richard Addinsell) GLCD5162
Wild Goose Chase (George Crow) GLCD5115
Winter Sunshine (George Melachrino) GLCD5162

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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.