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Music Webmaster Len Mullenger


The music of WILLIAM YEATES HURLSTONE (1876-1906) retains a tenuous hold on the outer fringes of the repertory. Maybe if he had lived longer this hold would have been much stronger. Many of his works, chamber and orchestral, were "serious" in intent, although rich in melody, but a few perhaps fall within the purview of these Garlands, for example the Four Characteristic Pieces (Ballade, Crown Song, Intermezzo and Scherzo) for clarinet (or viola) and piano, which, are sometimes heard, the suite The Magic Mirror and The Derby Ram and maybe other ballad like songs.

MARK A BREWER, active at roughly the same time, should not be confused with Herbert Brewer, Organist of Gloucester Cathedral and great friend of Elgar: no relation so far as I am aware. Mark Brewer's forte was writing solos for the piccolo which at that time - and before and to an extent afterwards - were popular in military band and light orchestral concerts. A selection of his titles would include The Deep Blue Sea, The Cornet, The Lark's Festival, The Linnet's Parade and Lilliputian Polka.

HARRY WOOD was the eldest brother of Haydn (and Daniel) Wood. His reputation is now nowhere near as high as Haydn's but his songs must have had a vogue in their day as I have discovered an orchestral selection of his song hits. He arranged some Manx Airs, no doubt a tribute to the island where the Woods were brought up; he also wrote a considerable number of light orchestral miniatures - at least a dozen waltzes (including the charmingly titled Moonlet Ripples), an entr'acte Maritza and much else.

ADAM GORB is a Professor of Composition at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester; but he is certainly not above composing lighter music (he should not feel constrained to apologise for this, as I understand he is in the habit of doing) of which perhaps the best known is a set of Yiddish Dances for wind band.

ERNEST NEWTON was a composer of popular ballad-type songs and duets either side of 1900 and a prolific arranger of folk and popular songs (Oh Dear! Oh Dear! Oh Dear!!! was a setting of Martin's Tickling Trio). His own titles included Ailsa Mine (1896), Love's Echo, The Golden Goose, The Drum Major, The Bold Gendarme, Anna, The Beat of the Drum, Going to Kildare, Shoemaker Ned, Zummerzetshire, In Springtime (i.e. It was a Lover and His Lass, from As You Like It), Irish Slumber Song (1903), Secret Isle of Mona, Underneath the Trees, Lorna, The Kiss of Dawn, Nita Gitana and Where the Chestnuts Bloom. His instrumental pieces included a march, The Spirit of the Guards.

Finally it's "Ladies Last", a mention for IRIS TAYLOR (pseudonym for Fred Hartley), who produced a number of attractive miniatures either side of 1940, originally for piano solo though many were orchestrated: Dreamy Afternoon and Japanese Gown (both arranged by Fred Hartley) and Starry Night (arranged by Ronald Hanmer). © Philip L. Scowcroft

February 2000

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