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Nights of Gladness
Charles ANCLIFFE (1880-1952)

Nights of Gladness - Ancliffe, Charles and His Orchestra
Ernest GILLETT (1856-1940)

Loin du Bal - Bijou Orchestra
Alphons CZIBULKA (1842-1894)

Stephane Gavotte - Kaufman, Ferdy and His Orchestra
Albert KETÈLBEY (1875-1959)

Clock and the Dresden Figures - Ketèlbey, Albert and His Concert Orchestra
Riccardo DRIGO (1846-1930)

Serenade: Notturno D'Amore - Rendezvous Orchestra
Franz von BLON (1861-1945)

Sizilietta - Prentice, Charles Drury Lane Theatre Orchestra
Leon JESSEL (1871-1942)

Wedding of the Rose (Der Rose Hochzeit) - Hylton, Jack and His Orchestra
Theodore Moses TOBANI (1855-1933)

Hearts and Flowers - Squire, J.H. and His Celeste Octet
Harold RAWLINSON (1891-1978)

Monsieur Tricotin (A Sketch of Montmartre) - Mantovani and His Tipica Orchestra
Ambroise THOMAS (1811-1896)

Entr’acte Gavotte - Weber, Marek and His Orchestra

Musette - Hartley, Fred and His Quintet

Occhi di Zingara - Alfredo and His Orchestra
Cècile CHAMINADE (1857-1944)

Pierrette - Bridgewater, Leslie and His Quintet
Montague EWING

Fairies in the Moon - Muscant, Joseph and The Troxy Broadcasting Orchestra

Cuban Serenade - Sandler, Albert Orchestra
Ede POLDINI (1869-1957)

Poupée Valsante (Waltzing Doll) - Orchestre Raymonde
Felix ARNDT (1889-1918)

Nola (A Silhouette) - Krish, Serge and His Sextet
Zdeněk FIBICH (1850-1900)

Poeme - Lorand, Edith and Her Orchestra

Teddy Bears Picnic (1) - Campoli, Alfredo and His Salon Orchestra
Jacob GADE (1879-1963)

Jealousy (Jalousie) - Roosz, Emil and His Orchestra
Jonny HEYKENS (1884-1945)

Serenade Number 1 - Von Geczy, Barnabas and His Orchestra

Cuckoo Waltz - New Mayfair Orchestra
George SCOTT-WOOD (1903-1978)

Shy Serenade - New Mayfair Orchestra
Ernest BUCALOSSI (1859-1933)

Grasshopper's Dance - Troise and His Mandoliers
Recorded 1929-1940
LIVING ERA CD AJA 5601 [74.42]

Crotchet Budget price

Another feast of the Palm Court awaits nostalgics. A look at the line-up will disclose the names of café fiddlers and recording giants of the genre – Sandler and his Strad, Campoli and his salon effusions, Alfredo and Mantovani. The majority are British performers and performances but some stellar continental names could hardly be refused. So Ferdy Kaufman joins Edith Lorand, Marek Weber and Barnabas Von Geczy in the roster, all elite violinists.

One of the incidental pleasures of a disc like this is to scan the booklet notes and find out biographical nuggets. I knew for instance that Alfredo was born Alfred Gill but not that he was from New Jersey. His cheery gypsy-ish postcards always suggest a denizen of Bournemouth or Acton. He jumped on the vogue for gypsy ensembles in the 1930s disbanding his dance band in the process. Of course we also have Ketèlbey and his Dresden Figures, Charles Ancliffe and a raft of dance band leaders – Jack Hylton, Debroy Somers, Charles Prentice. Collectors of the relatively obscure will like to note that Walter Goehr is here in his light music persona, adding his grit to the Poldini, alongside Campoli and the Orchestre Raymonde.

The tunes are mostly a delight, right from the splendid waltz that gives its name to the disc and Mantovani’s playing of the Harold Rawlinson piece Monsieur Tricotin. Alfredo’s band uses an accordion and spices the ensemble with whistling – rather winsome all round really. Much better is the Joseph Muscant band’s Fairies in the Moon (ignore the title). The Campoli titles are, to use the fiddler’s nickname, rather camp examples of his art – xylophones and gelatinous strings – but do listen out for the Somers band in Drigo’s Serenade. Who is that very fine cellist? It was a feature of bands like this – especially J.H. Squire’s Celeste Octet - to employ first-rate classical players and the Somers band sounds like it had a fair few on board.

There are novelty songs here naturally. Campoli serves up the dreaded Teddy Bears Picnic and Ronnie Munro dishes up all sorts of equipment for The Cuckoo Waltz including, for some reason, a Hawaiian guitar.

The 78s are in good nick – with the exception of a rather dished Fibich – and Peter Dempsey’s notes pack in a lot of valuable detail.

Jonathan Woolf

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