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April 2021

The Mark Fitz-Gerald Orchestra in lockdown

The light music classic "Puffin' Billy" by Edward White performed by members of the Mark Fitz-Gerald Orchestra in lockdown to provide a little joy for The British Home, which the orchestra would usually perform at each year. Arranged and produced by John Holland.


April 2021

Online concert from the Musical Museum

This Saturday, April 10th at 6pm (GMT) see Michael Carter live from the Musical Museum on their YouTube channel. An evening of music you can enjoy from the comfort of your own home. Michael plays the Mighty Regal Wurlitzer at the Musical Museum.


March 2021

News from The Aspidistra Drawing Room Orchestra

Bank Holiday Afternoon Concert, Monday 31st May 2021 2:30 pm
at Lauderdale House, Highgate Hill, London N6 5HG

The Aspidistra Drawing Room Orchestra plans to resume normal activity. So, the ensemble (consisting of string quartet piano flute and oboe) will be back at Lauderdale House in Highgate for their May Bank Holiday Concert with a programme of instrumental works and some songs from the Palm Court Era and beyond.

The audience will be socially distanced on this occasion, reducing the number of people who can attend in person but if there is sufficient interest the concert will be live-streamed for people who can not be accommodated at Lauderdale House. The programme will include:

Amparito Roca - Jamie Texidor
Mello Cello - Neil Moret
Lo ! Here the Gentle Lark - Sir Henry Bishop
The Continental - Con Conrad
Creole Love Call - Duke Ellington
Gallantry - Albert Ketèlbey
Sæterjenten Søntag - Ole Bull
Heather on the Pampas - Sydney Del Monte
Crackerjack - Mathias Seiber
Habanera - Georges Bizet

For tickets and further information please visit: www.aspidistra.org

Listen to us on Spotify

Some years ago we signed up to make our music available on Spotify. The process has taken a long time but we are pleased to report that from now on you can download our recordings from Spotify as well as from several other streaming platforms.

Not all our CDs are available as yet but it is likely to be only a matter of days before over 80 tracks will be accessible this way. So watch this space.

If you prefer to listen to actual CDs, we still have plenty of copies of 'Happy Frog and Hot Canary' and 'Beguine and Bugatti Step' and we are happy to sell these to subscribers of our newsletter for half price. Unfortunately, we had to cancel our plans to record another CD last year because of the pandemic but we hope to realise these plans later this year.

We have not yet been able to meet up as a group but have recorded another piece of music in our individual homes. This time we choose 'Die Lustige Fiedel' by Rudi Rischbeck. It was assembled by Ana, our flautist, together with a clip of Charlie Chaplin's 1916 film 'The Vagabond' for our YouTube channel.

We hope you enjoy the video; Please press 'like' if you do. You might also like to subscribe to our YouTube channel which links all our videos and many of our recordings.
We need 100 subscribers for us to continue the YouTube channel for free. It doesn't cost anything to subscribe - all you need to do is follow
this link and then click on 'Subscribe' in the right hand corner in the text below the video.

Please visit our website at www.aspidistra.org

March 2021

'HEHR Archive' on Youtube

This USA Youtube channel contains many playlists some of which Light Music enthusiasts will find of interest:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdw7kJeC2h7oZ8StCdQUjYg/playlists

Here is a selection of some of the playlists available on the channel:

'World of Light Music'
'The Story of Light Music'
BBC 'My Music'
'Melody Time'
'The Andre Kostelanetz Show'
BBC 'Sing Something Simple'
'Bands and their Music'
'On Parade'
'My Kind of Music'

and there are a lot more including over 40 BBC 'My Word' programmes!


March 2021

Welcome back Dame Edna!

The Dame returns to Radio 2 on Sunday 14th March at 9 pm with a new 4-part series, starting this time with 1936 and tracks from Elsie Carlisle & Douglas Byng.

Elsewhere you can watch - no doubt for the umpteenth time - Carol Reed's Oliver on Saturday afternoon on Channel 5 and Stanley Donen's Singin' In The Rain on Sunday afternoon on BBC2. Then there's Seven Brides For Seven Brothers at 6.35 am on Monday on TCM Movies (you'll need Sky or Virgin for this) and Barbra Streisand in Funny Girl on Monday afternoon on Sky Movies Classic (Freeview channel 51).

And, finally, Sky Arts (Freeview Channel 11) is re-showing Discovering Gene Kelly at 6 pm on Thursday (repeated on Friday at 2 pm). Their Discovering programmes are excellent, they have a team of well-informed critics and show a great many clips.

So a few things for us to look forward to...

Anthony Wills


February 2021

Another new 'Lockdown' video from
The Aspidistra Drawing Room Orchestra

Hard Hearted Hannah, the Vamp of Savannah by Jack Yellen, Bob Bigelow and Charlie Bates. Performed by the Aspidistra Drawing Room Orchestra in lockdown. Published in June 1924 by Tin Pan Alley, this popular song tells the story of a femme fatale of Savannah. Included in this recording is the first film to feature Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy together (The Lucky Dog, 1921), although here we only see Stan.


February 2021

Sunday Bandstand

For those of you who like Brass Bands, Chris Helme produces a two hour weekly programme of Brass Band music which you can stream online here

We have linked to his programmes from our streaming light music page.


Click here for archived news items


Read the report on our Autumn meeting
held in October 2019




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New CD reviews added:

6/4/2021
FESTMUSIK : A LEGACY
Onyx Brass | John Wilson

27/02/2021
FRENCH MUSIC FOR THE STAGE
Estonian National Symphony Orchestra
Neeme Järvi

27/02/2021
THE BEST OF 'MAKE WAY FOR MUSIC'
Featuring The BBC Northern Dance Orchestra

19/02/2021
ROGER QILTER - COMPLETE PIANO MUSIC
David Owen Norris

17/02/2021
NEW YEAR'S CONCERT 2021
Vienna Philharmonic

8/02/2021
DICKY BIRD HOP
Solo piano arrangements of Light Music Classics, performed by Paul Guinery.

14/01/2021
ENGLISH MUSIC FOR STRINGS
Sinfonia of London / John Wilson

09/01/2021
CLASSIC DIAMONDS
Neil Diamond / LSO

The London Light Music Meetings Group was formed in 2014 to continue to hold the meetings which were formerly organised by the Robert Farnon Society.

Each of these takes the form of a Sunday afternoon event during which recorded musical items are presented and discussed; they are held in May and October of each year.

The range of music genres is broadly as before embracing Light Orchestral, Film, TV and Theatre - related, Big Band and similar material.

The previous successful format is retained with a central feature/guest speaker and includes live performances from time to time.

We have now expanded this website to include news items, details of other musical events, CD and book reviews, and obituaries.

We welcome contributions in respect of any of the above, also comments and articles.

Please contact our webmaster
web@londonlightmusic.org.uk
or Tony Clayden
tony@londonlightmusic.org.uk
- telephone 020-8449 5559.