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Recordings Of Glad And Others

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Robin Madge's offer of recordings in the thread concerning the sad news of Gladys Thorp is a reminder that, despite some excellent intentions of the ICA and the occasional burst of activity by them,we do not have recordings of many very important players. The opportunities for concertina players being recorded professionally are very few and we must learn the lessons that the passing of another player teaches. Namely that we must be more conscientious in encouraging and helping each other to get stuff down on tape (or whatever). It is not just the old stagers who are passing on; others die tragically young.

I have been giving a little assistance to Al Day in his exciting Anglo project and it is distressing how little is available of such outstanding players as Andrew Blakeney-Edwards, Fred Kilroy, even Scan Tester. I was only able to offer one track of Rev. Ken and on that he was so obviously outside a skinful of Pink Gins that it was unusable!

I was particularly anxious that Andrew should be represented on this collection (you'll realise why when you hear him!!) and I asked around widely for recordings, but in the end the best available was something he did for me on an old cheap and cheerful cassette player with ageing batteries.

Can I urge everybody to consider making a recording of some 'party pieces' and I would then suggest submitting them to the ICA Sound Archive which would seem to me to be the obvious recipient and clearing house.

Robin's offer is a generous one. I hope it creates an avalanche.

Best wishes


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I totaly agree with Roger and I have been lucky to have had Rogers assistance with regards to Andrews playing.Even cleaned up some of the recordings of Andrew are not good, but when you hear the breath taking playing it is impossible not to include it.The same must be said for Fred Kilroy,until I received the recording from Roger I had never heard Fred play, but I love the joy and life that he brings to his playing.

Even in his eighties Scan Tester showed his love for the instrument and entertaining people and once again we have been lucky with finding a private collection of his work.

This site found ZaK and I am proud to have asked him to record for us and he has done a lovely job.

As Roger says please submit your recordings to the ICA. Someone in the future (hopefully ICA) will want to do a similar project to the one we are working on and lovely players we all take for granted will not be around.


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The ICA Sound archive is still in its infancy. However, Glad Thorp was one player recorded a few years ago on to a mini-disk. This consisted largely of an interview format with Glad talking about the various aspects of her musical history, and this was interspersed with Glad playing various tunes to illustrate the points mentioned in the interview. I am sure Glad was given her own tape format copy of this. I must try to find out if that is still around.


Another archive record of Glad is the very short video tape of the occasion in November 1993, when 5 players assembled to play for 2 1/2 minutes (No more) as part of the BBC Children in Need charity program broadcast. This was only transmitted in the BBC South East England region. Each member of the group then was given the short tape of that part, and those 5 tapes are the only record available as the BBC itself did not archive it. We do not know what Glad did with her own copy, but I still have mine.


- John Wild

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