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The Golden Age Of Light Music: A Trip To The Library

Release Date: 07/13/2010 
Label:  Guild   Catalog #: 5164   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Harry RabinowitzTrevor DuncanPaul DuboisBruce Campbell,   ... 
Conductor:  Cedric DumontRobert FarnonDolf van der LindenKurt Rehfeld,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hudson Ensemble
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 17 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Reminding us of the glories of the light music genre around the middle of the last century.

The booklet with this disc describes the way in which music publishers established collections of recorded music which could be used as background or interlude music for film, cinema newsreels, radio and television. Usually these recordings were not issued commercially unless they had already become popular. Not all of the music here was actually written for this purpose. Arthur Wood’s Suite “My Native Heath” was written in 1924 when he was a staff composer with Boosey and Hawkes. At that time they published such Suites and other items for the use of the many light music orchestras and ensembles that existed then. The back of the
Read more sheet music often used to advertise their “orchestral club” which offered a regular diet of such works, and I suspect that this and several of the other items on this disc were first published in this form. That does not mean however that they were not later included in the publisher’s record library and can therefore properly be included here.

Having said that, what we have here is yet another feast for anyone who enjoys light music of this period. Highlights included George Melachrino’s fantasy “Come landlord fill the flowing bowl”, Kurt Rehfeld’s “Fiddlers’ Frivol” (sic) and Ronald Hanmer’s “Children’s Hour”, but the variety and quality of the music is outstanding. Two of the earlier compositions included are also particularly enjoyable - Arthur Wood’s “My Native Heath” (how different the original orchestration was from that now heard on The Archers), and Rust’s “Life’s Laughter Overture”. Arthur Benjamin’s Overture to an Italian Comedy is slightly out of place here - it would fit well into a “normal” orchestral concert - but it is another gem. However the craftsmanlike quality of all the composers and performers is apparent throughout the disc even in those few pieces that are of somewhat lesser musical interest. It may be worth pointing out that the Melachrino item has had a short vocal section removed, but what remains does not seem noticeably lacking and the disc as a whole is well filled with over 77 minutes of well restored recordings - only a few sound their age and even this is no impairment to enjoyment.

One interesting aspect of this disc is the number of composers and performers who appear under pseudonyms. This has applied to other discs in this Guild series but seems to apply especially here. Thus Clive Richardson writes as Paul Dubois, and Willi Lautenschläger as José Armandola, and amongst the performers Robert Farnon becomes Ole Jensen. This was obviously a normal procedure at that time possibly for contractual reasons but it is good that these bizarre disguises are carefully set out in Guild’s usual meticulous listing. As usual again the notes are excellent, although again as usual not all of the items or composers included are discussed. This is nonetheless a very enjoyable collection, one of the best in the series, yet again reminding us of the glories of the light music genre around the middle of the last century.

-- John Sheppard, MusicWeb International
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Works on This Recording

Livin' It Up, for orchestra by Harry Rabinowitz
Length: 2 Minutes 47 Secs. 
The Girl from Corsica by Trevor Duncan
Conductor:  Cedric Dumont
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
Length: 3 Minutes 54 Secs. 
Jacarada Melody, for orchestra by Paul Dubois
Conductor:  Robert Farnon
Length: 2 Minutes 58 Secs. 
Popsy, for orchestra by Bruce Campbell
Conductor:  Dolf van der Linden
Length: 2 Minutes 41 Secs. 
Helicopter Journey, for orchestra by Jack Beaver
Conductor:  Kurt Rehfeld
Length: 2 Minutes 31 Secs. 
Country Canter, for orchestra by Ivor Slaney
Conductor:  Walker Warren
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hudson Ensemble
Length: 2 Minutes 38 Secs. 
Dinner At Chansons, for orchestra by Norrie Paramor
Length: 2 Minutes 13 Secs. 
Stardom, for orchestra by Robert Farnon
Conductor:  Robert Farnon
Length: 2 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Fiddler's Frivol by Kurt Rehfeld
Conductor:  Kurt Rehfeld
Length: 3 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Tele-Ski, for orchestra by Roger Roger
Conductor:  Roger Roger
Length: 2 Minutes 14 Secs. 
Sunday Driver, for orchestra by Peter Dennis
Conductor:  Theo Arden
Length: 2 Minutes 59 Secs. 
Children's Hour, for orchestra by Ronald Hanmer
Conductor:  Georges Devereaux
Length: 2 Minutes 48 Secs. 
Serenade To The Moon, for orchestra by Henry Croudson
Length: 2 Minutes 48 Secs. 
Remembrance, for orchestra by Patsy Lynn
Length: 2 Minutes 56 Secs. 
Dance Of The Dew Fairy, for orchestra by Edward White
Conductor:  Walter Collins
Length: 1 Minutes 32 Secs. 
Bromsgrove Fair, for orchestra by Leslie Bridgewater
Conductor:  Sidney Torch
Length: 2 Minutes 35 Secs. 
Come Landlard Fill The Flowing Bowl, Juke Box Fantasy by Traditional
Conductor:  George Melachrino
Length: 3 Minutes 24 Secs. 
Overture to an Italian Comedy by Arthur Benjamin
Conductor:  Stanford Robinson
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1937; England 
Length: 5 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Clown With A Tambourine, for orchestra by Montague Ewing
Length: 3 Minutes 6 Secs. 
Forty-Ninth Parallel: Excerpt(s) by Ralph Vaughan Williams
Conductor:  Charles Williams
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1940-1941; England 
Length: 1 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Fighter Command, for orchestra by Frank Tapp
Length: 2 Minutes 46 Secs. 
My Native Heath, suite for orchestra by Arthur Wood
Conductor:  William Hodgson
Period: Modern 
Written: 1925 
Length: 1 Minutes 38 Secs. 
In Buddah's Realm, for orchestra by José Armándola
Length: 2 Minutes 54 Secs. 
Life's Laughter, Overture (Lachendes Leben), for orchestra by Fridrich Wilhelm Rust
Length: 2 Minutes 52 Secs. 
A Love Song, for orchestra by Haydn Wood
Conductor:  Charles Williams
Length: 3 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Ten Days Leave, for orchestra by Charles Williams
Conductor:  Charles Williams
Length: 1 Minutes 30 Secs. 

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