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Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    

A 200th GARLAND OF BRITISH LIGHT MUSIC COMPOSERS

Our 200th bouquet is mostly concerned with song writers of various types. Bruno Huhn (1871-1950) is best remembered for Invictus, a rousing solo for brass; other titles were Behold the Labour, Courage, First Spring Advancing, Loveís Retreat, Seafarers and The Song of Morning. Ralph Greaves, active especially in the 1920s, produced piano music (e.g. Pastorale), songs for Twelfth Night and ballad-like songs such as I Arise From Dreams of Thee, Yellow Wine, Once Very Long Ago, A Poplar and the Moon and Lady When Your Lovely Head. From about the same period, William Hargreaves was more of a music hall composer, his most popular being Burlington Bertie From Bow. Others were We All Went Marching Home Again, They Built Piccadilly For Me. Delaneyís Donkey and Give My Regards to Leicester Square. His Itís The Old Army Game was interpolated into the originally American musical Poppy when this reached the London stage in 1924. John Guest, composer of I Hope I Donít Intrude, Shoulder to Shoulder, Certainly Not and The Tattler may come from the same period.

From a little later but writing songs in similar tone was Cecil Harington with The Blue Eyed Blonde and The Boy Friend (1943), Your Dogís Come Home Again, The Spelling Bee Song, The Song of the Birds and The Song of the Links. Dick Henty, spanned the period 1920 to 1950. Early in the 1920s he contributed songs to the musicals Tonightís The Night (an amusing confession of murders) and Faust On Toast (1921: Thatís How I Was) and his separate titles included Iím a Cornish Man, The Lazy Shepherd, The Modern Philosopher, Nothiní At All, Vendettas and Drake! dated 1948.

Phyllis Hardingís ballad style songs date mostly from around the 1950s: Hills of my Desire, In the Sweet Loneliness (1952), Come My Sweet Pretty Maid (1951), God Bless Me (1949), Sittiní in the Cornfields (1952), The Leafy Lanes of England (1950), Where Green Rushes Grow and The Magic Waltz (1957, known in vocal and purely orchestral versions). I have not been able to discover whether she was related to Wallace G. Harding, composer of the orchestral Suite, Days of Romance (in five movements: Morris Dance, Gavotte, The Woodland Glade, Barcarolle, Moonlight on the River, Valse - Alluring and The Hunt and Finale, Tarantella), or to Eric Harding, composer of the songs Aylesbury Duet, Out of the Twilight, Down a Quiet Little Street and Onward!

Philip L Scowcroft

June 2001


Enquiries to Philip at

8 Rowan Mount

DONCASTER

S YORKS DN2 5PJ

Philip's book 'British Light Music Composers' (ISBN 0903413 88 4) is currently out of print.

E-mail enquiries (but NOT orders) can be directed to Rob Barnett at rob.barnett1@btinternet.com


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