It’s taken a while but it’s here at last. A journey from London’s West End to Canadian recruiting halls, to the roses of Picardy and the Chimes of Normandy, taking in French Inns with saucy barmaids called Madelon, a New York peace rally, a German destroyer (complete with shanty), a nursing station in No-Man’s-Land, a German trench in Verdun, and the poppy fields of Ypres. We have rarities that haven’t been recorded in a century, and we have the most well-known WW1 songs of them all, dusted up and polished to shine in their original, fresh and energetic glory.
You can purchase a copy HERE.
Okay that’s enough sales pitch. But I really do believe in this CD. It contains violin, clarinet, piano duo, cello, saxophone, xylophone, glockenspiel, trombone, harp, flute, accordion, banjo, Irish bouzouki, mandolin, drums, guest soprano Emily Atkinson (who also plays the xylophone), piccolo, bass saxophone and even some Hawaiian slide guitar in the interlude to “Long Long Trail”. All has been arranged carefully by Mr. Matt Redman (www.matt-redman.co.uk where you can hear the Hawaiian slide guitars for yourself!) so you never hear all of this at once, but selectively according to the mood and background of the piece.
There are two songs in German and one in French, and translations are given in the booklet. You get a lot for your £10!
I am at the moment selling it through BigCartel, which is a more personalised service than Amazon. For now. I may move to a distributor later. It depends on how things go. At the moment I haven’t got any sound samples up, but as I have more time I will do something about this. In the coming weeks I have a lot to do, telling radio, TV and print media about this recording while it’s fresh, and also a mini tour of Ipswich for Music in Hospitals, and then a week in Swaledale for the WW1 show, followed by some community outreach work: the Festival’s “Wandering Minstrels” scheme. Then it’s some horsey ragtime songs for Derby Day with the Saint Cecilia Choir in Epsom. I may have some time after that!
Anyway! Step right up! The CD is available and can be bought! And all credit to Harrison Phair photography, who captured the image that is the cover. For your interest, I’ve attached the original version! A lot of people think that the CD cover is a composite and the crowd is from 1914, but we only made it look that way. The parade was rounding the vintage streetcar singing “Pack up your Troubles”, and I joined them with “Tipperary” at the moment the photo was taken. It was in Fleetwood, on the 11th of November, 2014.
The CD’s track list:
1 If You were the Only Girl in the World
2 Somewhere in France
3 Over There
4 Roses of Picardy
5 Gegen England
6 Stay Down Here where you belong
7 The Rose of No Man’s Land
8 Bald, Allzubalde
10 Red is the English Rose
11 I’m Always Chasing Rainbows
12 Chimes of Normandy
13 Quand Madelon
14 You’d Better Be Nice to them Now
15 Pack up your Troubles in your Old Kit Bag
16 Till We Meet Again
17 Long Long Trail