Keeping Track - Dateline June 2009

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My Gypsy Love & Great Themes from Great Operas [Highlights]

Gypsy moon, Tzigane, Play gypsies, dance gypsies, Waltz of the gypsies, The gypsy, Golden earrings, Czardas [Monti], Play to me, gypsy, Budapest, At the Balalaika, Gypsy love, Dark eyes / Intermezzo from ‘Cavalleria Rusticana’, Nessun dorma, Oh! my beloved father, La donna è mobile, Your tiny hand is frozen, Caro nome, E lucevan le stelle, Musetta’s waltz song

Vocalion CDLK 4387 [76:12]

Another splendid 2-on-1 CD comprising albums originally issued as mono LPs in the early ‘60s on one of the very first budget labels, Decca’s Ace of Clubs. Much of light music stems from the styles and technique of gypsy players. You will find here – in very decent stereo – a lot of the fire and lushness associated with gypsy music, and this album must feature quite highly in the Chacksfield canon. Even if you are not "into" opera, the melodies by Mascagni, Puccini and Verdi on the second album are irresistible in these Italian-tinged arrangements. Here’s hoping for more reissues from this source, notably ‘Songs of Sunny Italy’Peter Burt 

A Box of Light Musical Allsorts For full tracklisting details please see page the Light Music CDs pages on this website Guild GLCD 5157 77:51 mins. Where would light music enthusiasts be without Guild and a few other labels of a like mind – reissuing the sort of fare not supplied by the major record companies and radio stations? I ask this after listening to this latest Guild Light Music release, which opens in cracking style with Bob Farnon’s Orchestra and his arrangement of My Object All Sublime from "The Hot Mikado" – Gilbert and Sullivan (sort of!). It has a big ‘show-bizzy’ opening with, I’m sure, echoes of Bob’s Alcan Highway, leading to a swinging version of Sullivan’s well-known melody accompanying a tap dancer! A novelty indeed! Felton Rapley’s very attractive Southern Holiday and Werner Müller’s likewise Take Me To Your Heart continue this melodic programme. A dip into the Chappell catalogue brings a welcome CD release of Clive Richardson’s Mannequin Melodyand then Alfred Newman conducts his own film music to "A Letter To Three Lives" from a Mercury LP I’ve had since its release in 1956. Angela Morley’s tribute to Bob Farnon A Canadian In Mayfair is given a spirited performance by Sidney Torch and his Orchestra, the same recording I think David Ades included on his Sidney Torch Great British Light Orchestras HMV compilation of 1992, long deleted. Thou Swell is a catchy number from "Words and Music" and was sung in that film by June Allyson in 1948; here it is played by Andre Kostelanetz and his Orchestra. However the track I can’t get over is Military Samba by John McGregor, a name new to me – but it’s so infectious as played by Edmundo Ros conducting what sounds like a fairly large Concert Orchestra. I had forgotten that he’d ever recorded with such an ensemble, then I remembered his recording of Marching Strings on an earlier Guild CD which probably came from the same session. Charles Williams’ Let’s Go Shoppingplayed by the Danish State Radio Orchestra recalls newsreels and Pathé shorts of the 1950s, as doesPolka Dot by Eric Cook played by the New Concert Orchestra conducted by Cedric Dumont.Rahadlakum from "Kismet" was new to me although I knew the score had been adapted from Borodin’s work; here it’s played in fine concert style by Percy Faith who arranged it for his orchestra.The Happy Hippo from the Conroy Library by Eric Winstone is another catchy melody, as of course is Eric Coates’ ‘Phantasy’ "The Three Bears" played by the London Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Sir Charles Mackerras in 1956, although he did not receive his knighthood until 23 years later. Four more library numbers follow which take me back to the 1940s and 1950s. Melody In Moccasins by Wilfred Burns is played by Philip Green and his Orchestra on a rare MGM 78, then Fly Past by Cecil Milner (incorrectly credited to Charles Williams when Chappell resurrected it for their ‘Archive – Adventure’ CD CHAP 166). I’m very pleased with the inclusion of Horace Dann’s Worcester Beacon because my Paxton 78 copy has a very poor surface as other copies probably also have, so Alan Bunting’s excellent restoration (not a trace of surface noise) is very welcome – and he’s managed to retain what I call that unique Levy’s Sound Studios sound – wonderful! The fourth library piece in this group is St Boniface Down by Trevor Duncan. The jury’s still out on this one! And finally Noel Coward’s London Pride rounds off another great Guild Light Music CD and – as the title suggests – a veritable Box of Allsorts. Ken Wilkins 


Auf Grosser Europa-Tournee & Über Sieben Meere – Sailing Along

28 titles including Das ist die Berliner, Auf der Reeperbahn nachts um halb eins, Copenhagen Polka, Tulips from Amsterdam, Lisbon Antigua, Moulin Rouge, Frühling in Wien, Münchner Kindl, Gondellied, O mia bella Napoli, Isle of Capri, Arriverderci Roma / 21 tracks including Rolling home, Down by the riverside, Kari waits for me, Señorita Dolores, Aloha Oe, What shall we do with the drunken sailor, Rolling home, Good bye, fare you well

Vocalion CDLK 4382 [65:39]

Expecting the first album on this 2-on-1 to compare with the Melachrino above, I could not have been more disappointed. This is not the Müller sound from previous CDs I have heard but a dance band playing a series of potpourri: foxtrots from Berlin, Paris, Vienna and Rome, rock from Hamburg, waltzes from Amsterdam and Munich, polkas from Copenhagen, bossa novas from Lisbon, cha-chas from Venice, tangos from Naples, and the twist [some ripe bass guitar here] from Capri. There is no mention of it being recorded in front of a live audience [actually there is no explanation for anything in the complete absence of liner notes] so I can only assume that all the background crowd noise, the vocalising and the applause is dubbed. Pity they bothered. These are 12 tracks I’ll not be returning to again in a hurry – glad I did not have to pay postage and packing on this one! The collection of seafaring songs on the second album, although vocal with orchestral accompaniment, is a different kettle of fish; my wife thought it "a nice CD", which is high praise! It is largely sung in German but some titles are in English. The men’s voices in the shanties are especially effective. The slow waltz Farewell is Greensleeves in a most attractive arrangement with a plaintive harmonicaThis time there are background sounds of ships and sailors; more acceptable on a first hearing, at least. You, of course, may like the whole disc. Peter Burt 


Faust: Ballet Music, Waltzes [Gounod], Der Rosenkavalier: Waltzes [Richard Strauss], The Queen of Sheba: Ballet Music [Goldmark], Jewels of the Madonna: Dance of the Camorristi [Wolf-Ferrari], Kemenoi-Ostrow Op.10 [Anton Rubenstein], Turkish March [Beethoven], Ballet Egyptien [Luigini], Le Cid: Ballet suite [Massenet]

Frank Bristow FBCD182 [78:30]

Like the Kostelanetz below, this is another selection from the basic catalogue of Boston Pops recordings over the years. Familiar classics make this a varied, well thought out and unhackneyed orchestral album of mass appeal. In this respect it will be like all of Fiedler’s well-edited and [naturally] immaculate musicianship, beautifully atmospheric in its overall sound and presentation.Arthur Jackson 


Liza, Laura, Waltz from Sari, Vienna, city of my dreams, Falling in love with love, Intermezzo, Gold and Silver Waltz,, Gypsy Love Waltz, Someone to watch over me, Lady be good, Two hearts in three-quarter time, Emperor Waltz, Vilia, Have you met Miss Jones?, Waltz dream, Gypsy Baron Waltz, Diane, Love walked in, You made me love you, Serenade [Pierne], Bali-Hai, We kiss in a shadow, Moon over Miami, Now is the hour

Frank Bristow FBCD91 [78:30]

"Miscellany" this most certainly is…everything from light opera, evergreens and other pop classics, to the best of show tunes by Gershwin, Rodgers and even Strauss. Thus, it might be a collection of older recordings which may be familiar to long-time Kosty addicts – like myself, for instance, who bought my first Kostelanetz 78s something like sixty-six years ago, and fell in love with his sound which even then was progressive indeed. Altogether 78½ minutes of a master at his best. Arthur Jackson

Frank Bristow’s CDs are ONLY available direct from him at 2 Cross Street, Brighton, Victoria, 3186, Australia. Tel. 03-9528-3167. E-mail: Credit cards and PayPal are accepted, but no cheques – details on request. Please visit Frank’s website for information about other CDs in his catalogue:

50 Years of the Music of LAURIE JOHNSON – Volume 3 Disc One "The New Avengers" Disc Two "Lock Up Your Daughters", "The Four Musketeers" Disc Three Film Scores – "The Moonraker", Hot Millions, Captain Kronos, A Hazard of Hearts, The Lady and The Highwayman, A Ghost in Monte Carlo, A Duel of Hearts; TV Themes – No Hiding Place, Shirley’s World; Works for Military Band – Airborne, A Christmas Carol; London Big Band – Crazy for Gershwin, Jeepers Creepers, Come Rain or Come Shine, Suddenly, From This Moment On, My Romance, Swanee, Mean To Me, I Love Paris, Mack the Knife, It Could Happen To You, Begorra! Edsel EDSD 2027. The incredible talent of Laurie Johnson is vividly illustrated in the wide range of music contained on these three CDs. Readers who have already purchased the first two volumes in this series will know that each disc comes in its own jewel case with an excellent booklet crammed with text, pictures and recording information. This set has been compiled and annotated by Laurie himself, and packaged with photos and memorabilia from his own collection. It represents amazing value, and is warmly recommended. David Ades


A mighty fortress is our God, Whispering hope, Nearer my God to Thee, The Lord’s my shepherd, Abide with me, Onward Christian soldiers, The Holy City, Eternal Father strong to save, Beautiful Isle of Somewhere, Jesus, lover of my soul, Jesus, joy of man’s desiring, Little brown church in the vale, All people that on earth do dwell, Rock of ages

CDLF 8135 [51:28]

As a churchgoer and avid Mantovani album collector, I do not know how I failed to add this to my collection on its first appearance in 1961, and was resigned to it being the one that got away! Now, hallelujah, here it is in all its God-given glory. Yet again we are indebted to Mike Dutton. With five wordless contributions from the Sammes Chorus, the superb Kingsway Hall organ on three tracks and nine masterly arrangements by Cecil Milner [the maestro writing the other five], Mantovani thought it was one of his best ever albums and is quoted in his biography as saying: "No matter what religious inclinations one may have, it can only be pleasing to everyone." Biographer Colin Mackenzie’s words that "it remains a listening joy, a source of comfort in troubled times" could not be more apt today. The story behind the album is told for the first time in the comprehensive liner notes. And all for around a fiver. Peter Burt

Bargain Basement : Light Music Classics Volume 4 With Emma to town (Collins), Vanity fair (Collins) The London Promenade Orchestra/Anthony Collins; Bowin’ and scrapin’ (Casson), Sombrero (Brown), Celtic snapshots (Pagan) The New Century Orchestra/Sidney Torch; Poodle polka (Walters), Midsummer madness (Watters), Chiming strings (Richardson), Eternal melody (Hanmer), City centre (Ewing), Shop window (Hanbury) L’Orchestre Devereaux/Georges Devereaux; The beachcomber (Richardson), Getting together (Richardson), Paris interlude (White), Bargain basement (Watters) The New Concert Orchestra/Jack Leon; Savoir faire (Curzon), The juggler (Liter) The New Concert Orchestra/Nat Nyll; Hey presto! (Wilson arr Duncan), Melody at moonrise (Watters), Ski jump (Dollimore), Making tracks (Duncan), Bob-sleigh (Jupp) The New Concert Orchestra/Frederic Curzon; Piccadilly spree (Watters) The New Concert Orchestra/R de Porten; A mood for lovers (Burns) The Symphonia Orchestra/Jack Talbot; Practical joker (Spass muss sein) (Van Phillips), Moonlight with Maxine (Van Phillips) The Lansdowne Light Orchestra Vocalion CDVS 1958. As the title suggests, this is Vocalion’s fourth collection of Light Music at a bargain price, which should be snapped up by all readers of this magazine (it is available from the RFS Record Service for only £3.00). Seasoned collectors will already have many of these tracks on other CDs, but even if only three or four pieces are new to you it is surely worth paying the price to acquire them. Wonderful value. In case you have missed any of them, the previous issues in this series are: "Fingerbustin’" CDVS 1946, "Stringopation" CDVS 1954 and "Dreamtime" CDVS 1957. Buy them all while you can! David Ades

THE GEORGE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA / MELACHRINO STRINGS Music For The Nostalgic Traveller / Music For Relaxation [Highlights]

England: Big Ben chimes, English hymn, Oranges and lemons Ireland: Irish washerwoman Wales:David of the White Rock Scotland: The road to the Isles France: Sur le pont d’Avignon, Madelon [Quand Madelon], La rêve passé, Auprès de ma blonde, Il était une bergère, Danse Apache, Sur les soits de Paris, Can Can Italy: Funiculi, funicula, Tarantella, Catari, catari, Gondola song, Parlami d’amore Mariù, La Danza Spain: España, Tango, Valencia, Andaluza, Spanish Gypsy dance Central Europe: Liber Augustin, Wiegenlied, Swiss dance, Vienna, city of my dreams, The Blue Danube, Komme Tzigany, Gypsy carnival Tropics: Cielito lindo, Jamaican rumba, Pila pilo, Brazil, Solamente una vez, Aloha Oe / Moonlight serenade, While we’re young, Valse bluette, By the sleepy lagoon, La serenata, Berceuse de Jocelyn

Vocalion CDVS 1969 [73:37]

It is just as well that this CD is worth at least twice its listed cost of £2.99 as none of my usual sources of supply had it at that price [HMV told me that the recommended price from Vocalion was £6.99, hence their price of £4.99] so, reluctantly, I had to pay half as much again in postage and packing. The last half-a-dozen tracks are from a 1958 stereo album and are typical of Melachrino’s suave sound. The first album comes from two years earlier and is in mono. The French and Italian selections have already appeared on Guild Light Music CDs. Vivid well-played arrangements, largely shared between maestro Melachrino and William Hill-Bowen, would have benefited from the extra dimension of stereo. Buy it [for £2.99 if you can], put it on your player, maybe turn up the volume a tad and enjoy! Peter Burt This CD is available from the RFS Record Service for £3.00. 


The bells of St Mary’s, By the sleepy lagoon, Hearts and flowers, Somewhere a voice is calling, Love here is my heart, Just a wearyin’ for you, ‘Bambi’ Medley, To a wild rose, Moonlight and roses, I’m in the mood for love, I only have eyes for you, Roses of Picardy, These foolish things, ‘Look For The Silver Lining’ Medley, Valse vanité, Body and soul, Smoke gets in your eyes

Sounds of Yesteryear DSOY 772 [62:04]

A pleasant way to remember those good old days when the BBC played light music on Sunday afternoons! The last two tracks feature the sweet saxophone of Freddy Gardner. Paul Clatworthy 

That’s Light Musical Entertainment For full tracklisting details please see the Light Music CDs pages on this website Guild GLCD 5158 78:29 mins. That’s Entertainment played by the Conrad Salinger Orchestra kicks off another Guild selection of melodies - most of which are bereft of airtime from our national broadcasting service. Angela Morley’s orchestra is next with Robert Farnon’s classicWestminster Waltz, then a name I usually associate with horror films, but here in partnership with Mitchell Parrish for Ruby from the film "Ruby Gentry" – Heinz Roemheld, a German musical director long in Hollywood. He was responsible for the scores to "The Invisible Man", "Dracula’s Daughter", "The Creature Walks Among Us" and others – not all of them horror movies. Andre Kostelanetz makes the Waltzes from "Count of Luxembourg" sound as though they were written just for his orchestra – a marvellous sound enhanced by Alan Bunting’s restorative treatment. David Ades confessed to me that he has included this track because it reminds him of the days in the mid-1950s when the English service of Radio Luxembourg used to open with this music around 7:00pm, although he has not been able to establish whether or not it was actually the Kostelanetz version that was used. Geraldo’s New Concert Orchestra does a fine job of All My Life by George Melachrino from "Eight O’Clock Walk", but the film itself is dismissed by Halliwell as ‘minor league courtroom stuff; an adequate time passer’. Very disheartening for the composer, I would think. This Can’t Be Love, I’ll See You In My Dreams and But Beautiful continue the romantic screen themes, but Alfred Newman (from my same Mercury LP that David used in ‘A Box of Light Musical Allsorts’) steps us the pace with his music for the Bette Davis classic "All About Eve" which also featured a very young Marilyn Monroe. I didn’t realise that Bob Farnon’s Blue Theme from a Chappell 78 was featured in the film "True Lies", so I turned again to Halliwell for his verdict – ‘it long overstays its welcome though the destruction is on an extremely lavish scale’. It stars the present Governor of California. Track 12 has the Overture by Sigmund Romberg, arranged by Robert Farnon, to "The Girl In Pink Tights"; the music is new to me but very enjoyable. Harry Warren’s This Heart Of Mine from the film "Ziegfeld Follies" gets a great treatment from George Melachrino’s Orchestra, as does Time Was played by Mario Ruiz Armengol and his Orchestra – a name I’d never heard of until he started to appear on Guild CDs. Buckly Down Winsocki from the 1943 MGM film "Best Foot Forward" (which has, I think, a military college background) starred Lucille Ball who’s singing voice was dubbed on the soundtrack, but the odd-titled piece is played here by (William) Hill-Bowen and his Orchestra. Body and Soul by Johnny Green is given a too dreamy treatment for my liking by Morton Gould’s Orchestra, but Geoff Love’s Orchestra makes the very best of Jerome Kern’s lovely song Make Believe from "Show Boat".Waltz For My Lady written and conducted by Frank Perkins could easily have come from a mood music library – it has a most infectious swing, while Leroy Holmes’ Enchanted Night has a real film ‘smoochy’ night club feel and one can imagine the camera following a particular couple round the dance floor. And finally the curtain comes down on another fine Guild programme with the incidental music by Max Steiner to "Since You Went Away" with the composer conducting. I also have a shortened version on another CD of the score, but as this Guild recordings is just over nine minutes you get, as usual, value for money with this series. Ken Wilkins 


19 tracks [all mentioned below]

Bygonedays BYD 77026 [72:21]

This long awaited Eric Coates CD will indeed "delight" the many thousands of fans of the nation's foremost composer and, at £5.99, is a "give away". From In Town Tonight, the foxtrot version of theKnightsbridge March, by Teddy Joyce and his Band to the very obvious finale of Eric conducting his outstandingly successful Dam Busters March, it presents the listener with a collection [17 conducted by the composer] very easy on the ear. It is right to say about Eric Coates that "Music was in his life and life was in his music". This music is still fresh and entertaining, patriotic, stirring and able to carry the listener into realms of quiet relaxation with so many mental images of  long gone times: people, places, events, sunlit byeways, mist-filled meadows after summer rain and sun; also busy streets, the shuffle and click of leather on paving, the mingle of traffic and ongoing workers weaving their ways to the daily grind. Here are favourites like By The sleepy lagoonLondon Bridge March,Symphonic Rhapsody on ‘I heard you singing’ and ’Bird songs at eventide’Song of LoyaltySummer Afternoon [Idyll], and Footlights [Concert Waltz], all with Eric conducting the Columbia  Symphony Orchestra. For Your Delight is the title track with Eric conducting the HMV Light Symphony Orchestra with which group he also fronts for The Man About Town [No.2 from ‘The Three Men’] and At the Dance [No.3 from ‘Summer Days’]. Eric conducts his own Orchestra for Wood Nymphs [Valsette], the Band of H.M. Life Guards play the march Over To You. With Television MarchOxford Street March,Westminster [Meditation]Rhythm [No.4 from ‘The Four Centuries’] and  Sound & Vision – The A.B.C. TV March, all combine a feast of music through the length of the disc. The disc, like all of those produced for the nostalgia market, is a fine and varied work. The technical expertise rendered upon recordings of over 75 years of age provides the ambient qualities associated with the era, with the dramatic advantage of next century technology that completely converts the listening pleasure for ages to come.  Full and impressive booklet notes by Peter Dempsey make for a wealth of information; he leaves no musical stone unturned. Whether at home or abroad this disc is a must for your CD shelves. I look forward to the next one, and trust that you will too.  Geoff Sheldon

Geoff Sheldon is Chairman of the Eric Coates Society in Hucknall, the composer’s birthplace. 

DAVID SNELL CHAMBER MUSIC FOR HARP Lyric Sonata; Elegie, Fantasie; Cavatina and March; Intrada and Waltz. Skaila Kanga (harp), Karen Jones (flute), Judith Busbridge (viola), Caroline Dearnley (cello), Nicholas Buckall (clarinet), Richard Bissill (French horn), Marcia Crayford(violin). Divine Art Diversions ddv 24130. Don’t be put off by "Chamber Music"! David Snell is, I am told, a member of the RFS and this disc shows that he has a gift for melody and several of the items here are light music miniatures. Debussy and others wrote sonatas for the same combination of instruments as the Lyric Sonata (flute/harp/viola) but the "Lyric" part of the title is dominant; all three movements overflow with melody and even nod towards jazz. The Fantasia explores fascinating and shapely material for harp, clarinet and horn; the lighter items are Elegie(flute/harp/cello), Intrada and Waltz, a pleasantly lilting example, (harp/violin), and Cavatina and March (flute/harp) in which a touchingly wistful Cavatina is followed by a March which reminds me of Trevor Duncan’s ("Dr. Finlay") example. David Snell has been a harpist with many orchestras, a conductor and a composer of film and "production" music. He will be delighted, as I am, with the fine playing, especially Ms Kanga, one of our finest harpists, and the excellent recording. Highly recommended. Philip Scowcroft 

SENTIMENTAL JOURNEY The Singers Unlimited with Robert Farnon and his Orchestra The More I see You, Sleepy Time Gal, I Get Along Without You Very Well, Angel Eyes, As Time Goes By, I’ll Remember April, If I Didn’t Care, Sentimental Journey, In The Still Of The Night, Deep Purple, Put Your Dreams Away, Mona Lisa, How Beautiful Is Night MPS Jazzclub 06025 1794292, 53:07. This compilation revisits those two memorable 1970s LPs "Sentimental Journey" and "Eventide". The first is included in full, whereas five tracks have been selected from "Eventide". With vocal arrangements by Gene Puerling, allied to the orchestral magic created by Robert Farnon, these are surely impeccable performances that will continue to amaze music lovers for the rest of this century – and beyond. It is a pity that some tracks on "Eventide" have been omitted (there would have been time on the disc), but many of you will know that the original albums have already been reissued in full on CD. If you missed them previously, this is your chance to enhance your collection with some superb sounds! David Ades Available from the RFS Record Service. 


Now I know, Manic depressive presents, Tess’s torch song, Jive number, Cradle song, Smoke gets in your eyes, Yesterdays, Lovely to look at, Summertime, Sophisticated lady, Laura, Isn’t it kind of fun?, It might as well be spring, That’s for me, It’s a grand night for singing, Slowly, Ole buttermilk sky, My foolish heart, Hey! ba-ba-re-bop, Among my souvenirs, Lazy river, The voice of Dana Andrews

Sounds of Yesteryear DSOY768 [65:31]

Compiler Michael Highton has latched on to a good idea here. Everyone is catered for, film buffs, good music lovers, romantics and anyone who needs their spirits lifted. Instead of the same theme repeated in different guises you get a very varied collection, not even limiting you to one film! The key to holding the CD together is film star Dana Andrews, picking parts of his films from 1944 to 1949. Orchestras involved are Glenn Miller, Tex Beneke, Victor Young, Ralph Flanagan, Andre Kostelanetz and Frank Cordell. Singers are Hoagy Carmichael, Danny Kaye, Diana Shore, Allan Jones, Dick Haymes and Ray Eberle. Bill Finegan’s arrangement of The cradle song, Norman Leydon’s score for Now I know and David Raksin’s Laura are worth the price alone. Not all tracks are from soundtracks, some are transcriptions but they all fit together in a wonderful montage of entertainment. Paul Clatworthy

WONDERFUL WORLD OF ROMANCE Unforgettable Melodies Of Haydn Wood - Peter Dempsey [tenor], Guy Rowland [piano]

Songs: O flower divine!, Wonderful world of romance, Little Yvette, A song of quietness, I look into your garden, Dearest I love the morning, Praise, I think of you, my sweet, The unforgotten melody, Singing to you, I shall be there, The stars looked down, This is my dream … and seven other titles

HW 1 [71:45]

Generally speaking, Haydn Wood is best known for light orchestral miniatures, but he also composed around 200 songs of the ballad-type [his wife was a professional singer], of which the most popular were Roses of Picardy [it won hands down], Love’s garden of roses and A brown bird singing. This disc gathers together 19 of them [including those three] written between 1914 and 1946 in performances which are, as in the Dempsey/Rowland CD devoted to Eric Coates reviewed in the last JIM, notable for clarity of delivery and diction and thoroughly recommendable. They appear in roughly chronological order; although the songs from around 1940 seem to have a rather desperate optimism, generally they exhibit a recognizable family likeness, so it was a good idea to intersperse four short piano solos [some were also orchestral] to supply contrast and an opportunity for Guy Rowland to display solo as well as accompaniment skills. Many tracks, vocal and instrumental, are doubtless premiere recordings, but which are not specified. An admirable and unusual anniversary tribute. Philip L Scowcroft

Available from Peter Dempsey at 44 Victoria Road, Bidford, Warwickshire, B50 4AR. [e-mail: Demsini] - £9.95 incl. p&p 


Kenneth Smith [flute] and Paul Rhodes [piano]

Hamilton Harty: In Ireland; Edward German: Intermezzo, Suite for Flute and Piano; Michael Head: By the river in spring; Havelock Nelson: Eirie cherie, In Venezuela; William Alwyn: Flute Sonata; Thomas Dunhill: Valse Fantasia; Kenneth Leighton: Flute Sonata; Stanford Robinson: The Moon-Maiden’s Dance

Divine Art Records DA 25069 [77:34]

This is a honey of a disc. Two of the items are styled "Sonata" but Alwyn’s, in one movement and reconstructed from unpublished bits, is recognisably by the film composer we know, while the Leighton’s slow movement is one of the loveliest things I have heard for a while. Harty’s ‘In Ireland’has atmosphere, the German pieces are perfect late Victorian salon miniatures, the Head alternates a cadenza-like motto theme with songlike episodes, the Dunhill has both tunefulness and brawn. Two BBC stalwarts of light music’s great period are represented: Stanford Robinson, who, as we hear, could compose as well as conduct, and Ulsterman Havelock Nelson, whose two pieces recall his associations with the Americas. Performances and recording enhance this unusual but wholly delightful repertoire. Generous measure, too. Philip L Scowcroft 


Baroque Chamber Orchestra, The King’s Singers, Lesley Garrett, Manuel Barrusco [guitar], Rostal & Schaefer, The Swingle Singers, Vienna Boys’ Choir, Kindred Spirits, David Tanebaum [guitar]

45 songs by Lennon & McCartney and George Harrison

EMI 2167842 [73:14 & 73:58]

Yeah, yeah, yeah! Without question the most entertaining new release I have reviewed this time round and, despite stiff competition, gets my accolade for the June JIM’s Best Album. I don’t think it is intended exclusively for classical music buffs as there is much here to appeal to the light music enthusiast, not least Arthur Wilkinson’s ‘Beatle Cracker Suite’, which cleverly blends Tchaikovsky with the Fab Four, and ‘The Beatles Concerto’, arranged by John Rutter, played by piano duo Rostal and Shaefer with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Ron Goodwin. This combination also contribute Maxwell’s silver hammerFool on the hill and A hard day’s night. It is difficult to choose standout tracks – they are all so good – but I particularly enjoyed the Vienna Boys’ Choir All you need is love, Lesley Garrett and orchestra conducted by George Martin with For no one/Blackbird and the five tracks by the Baroque Chamber Orchestra conducted by Richard Edinger. Tremendous value at around a tenner. Peter Burt 

BING CROSBY Through The Years Volume Three

26 tracks including Misto Cristofo Columbo, Your own little house, When the world was young, A weaver of dreams, At last! At last!, Just for you, Sailing down the Chesapeake Bay, Ida, sweet as apple cider, It had to be you, Two Shillelagh O’Sullivan, Rosaleen, Don’t ever be afraid to go home

Sepia 1129 [76:30]

Richard Tay’s enterprising label continues its chronological look at Bing’s recording career. On track one, from June 1951, he is joined by Jane Wyman for In the cool, cool, cool of the evening; not only a Top 20 winner but receiver of the Oscar for Best Film Song. Domino, recorded in October of the same year, also made the Top 20. Two weeks later he recorded The Isle of Innisfree, which appeared in the first ever UK charts in November 1952 and peaked at No.3. Also included are duets with The Andrews Sisters [I’ll si-si ya in Bahia and The live oak tree] and a couple of Christmas songs [Christmas in Killarney and It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas]. The final two tracks have a "Nashville" sound with Grady Martin and his Slew Foot Five [Just a little lovin’ and Till the end of the world]. Versatility was certainly one of the great Bing’s qualities. Peter Burt 

EDMUND HOCKRIDGE The Best of Edmund Hockridge

20 tracks incl. No other love, By the fountains of Rome, Young and foolish, A woman in love, Long ago [and far away], Moon river, ‘S Wonderful, The way you look tonight, Tonight, They can’t take that away from me, Tenement Symphony, Love letters, Only a rose, Falling in love with love, I love Paris

Pulse PLS CD 254 [60:35]

Although not a new release but mentioned here in tribute to the fine baritone who starred in seven Broadway hits in London’s West End theatres, and passed away in March this year, aged 89. "Ted" was a friend of the RFS [he sang with Bob’s band during WW2] and charmed those of us who had the privilege of meeting him. These are all classic songs and something to remember him by. Peter Burt


56 songs incl. Ta-ra-ra-boom-der-e, The band played on, The Bowery, On a Saturday night, While strolling thru the park one day, Hello my baby, I’ve got rings on my fingers, In my merry oldsmobile, In the good old summertime, Sweet Rosie O’Grady, Little Annie Rooney, Waltz me around again Willie, Sidewalks of old New York, A bicycle built for two, She’ll be comin’ round the mountain, Put on your old grey bonnet, M-i-s-s-i-s-s-i-p-i / Dialogue and I got rhythm, Embraceable you, You’re an old smoothie, Anything goes, Ridin’ high, Way down in the depths of the 90th floor, This is it, I’ll pay the check, Do I love you? Friendship, How deep in the ocean

Sepia 1131 [74:25]

A bit of a surprise here as I’ve always thought of this artist as a bit of a "belter" but there is warmth and a degree of light and shade in this vast selection. She had a powerful voice and was undoubtably one of the great ladies of the musical stage. The first ten tracks are from a Decca album called‘Memories’, recorded in 1955, arranged and conducted by Jay Blackton with The Mitchell Boys Choir and the Old Timers Quartet. It consists of 41 songs taking the listener on a journey through musical America from the 1890’s to the 1920’s … and is great fun. The second part of the disc is a 15-track selection from ‘A Musical Autobiography’, also recorded in 1955, in which Ethel narrates her career to date with "a stampede" through her songbook. She is accompanied by The Buddy Cole Quartet. Although she has a very pleasant speaking voice, I wonder about discs with dialogue for repeated listening. This aside, I don’t think anyone buying the CD will be disappointed. Peter Burt

JANE MORGAN Sings Popular Favourites

27 tracks including Around the world, It’s not me to say, An affair to remember, My heart reminds me, April love, All the way, Young in heart, Just a-wearyin’ for you, Melodie d’amour, Till the end of time, Till, Tammy, Where the blue of the night meets the gold of the day, Catch a falling star

Sepia 1126 [76:13]

A wonderful follow-up to the two previous Sepia discs: ‘An American Songbird in Paris’ and ‘Sings Showstoppers’, Jane must be one of the most overlooked singers of our time. This album has a choice selection of quality songs including her January 1959 UK singles chart topper The day the rains came, in both English and French versions. Accompaniments are provided either by The Troubadours, or orchestras conducted by Marty Gold or Vic Schoen. Excellent booklet notes by Dominic McHugh. I would happily listen to Jane singing every day and this will surely feature in my top choices for 2009. Peter Burt 

ARTIE SHAW ‘The Complete Spotlight Band 1945 Broadcasts’ Tabu, If I Loved You, Little Jazz, Out Of This World, Begin The Beguine, Summit Ridge Drive, Together, Lucky Number, My Heart Stood Still, Stardust, I Cover The Waterfront, Scuttlebutt, It Had To Be You, Dancing In The Dark, Along The Navajo Trail, S’Wonderful, Hindustan, Night And Day … 39 tracks on 2 CDs Hep Records CD 84/85.The above titles give an indication of the repertoire covered by this great collection of fine performances by the Artie Shaw Band – well-known hits from earlier (such as Begin The Beguine andStardust) plus new pop tunes and instrumentals featuring fine scores by the calibre of Eddie Sauter, Ray Conniff, George Siravo and Lennie Hayton. Audiences in those days seemed to appreciate true musicianship much more than today. As the title of the collection states, these are radio broadcasts and you will hear audience reaction. Happily it is not too obtrusive, and at times I wondered if the applause was dubbed to make it sound like a ‘live’ show in front of an audience. Considering the age of these recordings, and the fact that they have probably passed through the hands of several collectors, the sound quality is fine and Doug Pomeroy is to be congratulated on his undoubted expertise in handling modern digital restoration equipment. The booklet is packed with interesting notes and photographs, and anyone interested in the swing era should look this one out. Some of these recordings have been issued before, but the booklet claims that this is the first time that all of Shaw’s music from these broadcasts has been brought together in one collection. David Ades

BLESS THE BRIDE Original London Cast

24 tracks including Croquet, croquet, Too good to be true, Thomas T, Oh! What will mother say?, I was never kissed before, Ducky, Bless the bride, Bobbing, bobbing, Mon pauvre petit Pierre, This is my lovely day, The fish

Sepia 1124 [78.09]

With words by A. P. Herbert and music by Vivian Ellis, this show opened at London’s Adelphi Theatre on 26th April 1974 and stayed for 886 performances. The stars were Lizbeth Webb and Georges Guétary. Also in the cast were Betty Paul, Anona Winn [of ‘Twenty Questions’ fame] and Brian Reece [BBC radio’s ‘PC 49’]. The opening track is a selection from the show played at the piano by Vivian Ellis himself with the theatre orchestra conducted by Michael Collins. There are four "Bonus Tracks" from Monsieur Guétary including Table for two [not on the cast album] and Ma Belle Marguerite [in French]. Pure nostalgia. Ray Pavene

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