Classical Editor: Rob Barnett                               Founder Len Mullenger:

VOLUME FIVE: 'The Parlour Tradition'
Gordon Pullin (tenor)
Roger Fisher (piano)

Charles Dibdin - Tom Bowling;
John Braham - The Death of Nelson;
Michael Balfe - Come into the Garden, Maud;
Claribel - You and I;
Arthur Sullivan - The Lost Chord;
Frederick Clay - I'll Sing Thee Songs of Araby;
Joseph Barnby - The Beggar Maid;
Stephen Adams - The Holy City;
Henry Leslie - Annabelle Lee;
Henry Lamb - The Volunteer Organist;
Dolores - The Brook;
Liza Lehmann - Ah, moon of my delight;
Florence Aylward - Song of the Bow;
Amy Woodforde-Finden - Kashmiri Song;
Charles Willeby - Crossing the Bar;
Maude Valérie White - Absent Yet Present;
Wilfred Sanderson - Until;
May H. Brahe - Bless This House;
A. Bazel Androzzo - If I can help somebody

PRICE: £10.00 each, incl. p&p; British Music Society members £9.00.

The latest volume (of seven projected in all) in this important and comprehensive series is devoted to 'parlour' songs or ballads which form had its floreat period during the Victorian and Edwardian eras. The repertoire on the CD stretches that historical period at either end as the Dibdin and Braham date from well before 1837 and Bless This House and If I Can Help were both published well after the Great War, the latter indeed in 1945. The disc seems to contain almost everybody's favourite high voice parlour songs and they are heard in the best possible light - not a hint of parody or even overstatement and admirably clear diction. These songs - and i am thinking particularly of The Death of Nelson - still have the power to mov us. There are a number which are new or almost new to me although they are all written within the same matrix. Annabelle Lee for instance or Crossing the Bar or The Beggar Maid. Henry lamb was an American and in his Volunteer Organist, in Dolores' The Brook, perhaps in Claribel's You and I the temptation to ham them up must have been almost irresistible (though these artistes do resist it); yet the songs by Frederick Clay, Liza Lehmann and Maude Valérie White, in particular, are sensitive imaginations and almost border on the art song genre, while Florence Aylward's stirring Song of the Bow, to words by Arthur Conan Doyle, reflect the patriotic feeling of its period as The Yeomen of England, The Old Superb and maybe half a hundred others. Performances show admirable musicianship and sensitivity on the part of both singer and accompanist and recording and presentation are again very good. I cannot really imagine anyone not deriving pleasure from this disc - even if some might do so shamefacedly.

Philip Scowcroft

See review of earlier volumes

Do have a look at Gordon Pullin's website at



PRICE: £10.00 each, incl. p&p; BMS members £9.00.

The CD may also be obtained from

Gordon Pullin, Treakles, Kettlebaston, Suffolk, IP7 7QA


or from

Macdonald Music Services, 14 High Street, Steyning, West Sussex, BN

and from

Audiosonic (Gloucester) Ltd, 6 College Street, Gloucester, GL1 29E

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