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malcolm clapp

Salvation Army Concertina Bands

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Eva was certainly the most photogenic concertina player at the turn of the century.

Dan,

 

The most photogenic Anglo player anyway! :D

 

There was also her very photogenic namesake Eva Taylor, the daughter of another minister (and both no doubt named after Little Eva, the heroine of 'Uncle Tom's Cabin'), who played an English system 56-key treble Æola. I must scan the three post cards that I have of her, so that the English concertina players can have their own pin-up! ;)

 

I now have a collection of about a dozen photos of her (several in her 'rags' costume, and some where she holds a button accordion...gasp!)

Yes, I mentioned I had a picture of her as "the General in rags" with a melodeon (I guess she was well aware that an expensive Jeffries was hardly the instrument to portray a poor woman from the slums), and that I even have another of her with a banjo (double gasp!! :rolleyes: ).

 

 

Before crowning Eva #2, consider also Libby McCabe of Seattle, and what about this fair lady?:

http://www.concertina.com/eydmann/christin...ertina-1908.pdf

On second thought, I'd fear for my life if I was in the same room with her whilst holding my "cheap atrocity" anglo!

 

You are right about Eva, when disguised in rags, as being better off without a pricey Jeffries giving her away. However, the photos I have of her with accordions whilst in rags contain some pricey looking accordions, too! Then there is the rag costume itself...the rags are too clean-looking in the photos I have to fool a streetwise East London or Brooklyn waif! To be fair, she was using this as a stage costume too (The General in Rags).

 

If you'd like, we could combine our Eva Booth photo collections and get them all out there for inquiring minds to gaze upon; I think Bob Gaskins would be up for it. Eva was an amazing person.

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Stephen, I hope you will be able to share these photographs with us, especially us Evangeline Booth fans. I can't be the only one, can I? Red

Hi Red,

 

I will see what I can do, but I don't have a scanner at the moment. It sounds like Mark is quite smitten too ...

Good things come to those who wait...

 

EvaBooth1.jpg

 

EvaBooth2.jpg

 

And here's a coincidence that I couldn't help but notice - the Torquay photo with the banjo (for Mark!) was taken in 1888 by Debenham & Stewart, a studio in which Marie Lachenal's husband Edwin Debenham was a partner.

 

edited photos

Edited by Stephen Chambers

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Lovely pic,Stephen..........I'm restraining myself from making any comment about the boy whose singing helped quell the mob at Torquay ( wild place, eh?), but I did notice the banjo has six strings plus a thumb string. Is or was this a common set-up for a banjo ?

Thanks Robin

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Lovely pic,Stephen..........I'm restraining myself from making any comment about the boy whose singing helped quell the mob at Torquay ( wild place, eh?)

Robin,

 

You'd want to, it was the "wild west" of England at the time - at least, for the Salvation Army! In fact it was one of the occasions when her father, General Booth, said "Send Eva!", to sort it out.

 

There's "A rare cabinet photograph of those Salvation Army members who were imprisoned for marching on a Sunday, Evangeline Booth was one of those involved", for sale on eBay at the moment, and I hope the seller won't mind me "advertising" it for them here. ;)

 

That's Eva in the middle, wearing the white sash that's in the banjo photo too:

 

Torquay1888.jpg

 

... but I did notice the banjo has six strings plus a thumb string. Is or was this a common set-up for a banjo ?

It was the commonest set-up for a banjo in England in the 19th century, tuned like a 5-string, but with a couple of extra basses.

 

I used to look out for them for my friend Reuben Reubens, when he was collecting 19th century banjos - so I've had quite a few of 'em.

Edited by Stephen Chambers

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I have in my possession some photographs of UK Salvation Army concertina bands. There are ten jpgs in a file approx 1.4M and I am happy to send them to anybody interested by email.

(Sorry, my computer knowledge (lack thereof!) will not let me use all the wonderful tools like compression/zips etc and I do not want to put them up on a web site because of potential copyright problems I have been warned about).

 

Just a little bit of history....

The first Salvation Army Concertina Band was formed in Bristol, England, in 1882, and continued until November 1971. At the time it disbanded, there were only two other bands in existance, being Plymouth Congress Hall (formed 1892) and Doncaster Citadel (formed 1917). I have heard reports of Salvationist concertina bands in the Sheffield area and in Dumfries (Scotland), though I know nothing of these, and also at Weston-Super-Mare (Somerset), which disbanded in the late 1940s.

 

The Bristol Citadel Band had four concertina-band leaders over its period of existance. These were all men, as were their accompanying drummers, though the concertina players appeared to be entirely drawn from the ladies ranks.

Early Bristol instrument type is not known, but in 1920 they acquired a new set of identical instruments, stamped Ball Beavon, metal ended 31 bone button anglos in Bb/F, steel reeded in very high old pitch, and these were used up until the band was decommissioned, at which point the four remaining members were allowed to keep a concertina each. The remainder were apparently returned to Headquarters.

 

Doncaster Band apparently played only English system, while Plymouth had most systems represented. Weston-Super-Mare Band played Bb/F anglos similar to the Bristol band instruments.

 

The photographs are as follows:

 

Bristol Citadel Band 23rd April 1967

Plymouth Congress Hall Band 23rd April 1967

Doncaster Citadel Band 23rd April 1967

All three bands together 23rd April 1967 (these taken at a Three Band Weekend in Bristol)

Bristol Citadel Band 1960

Bristol Citadel Band c1938

Bristol Citadel Band c1923 (two photos)

Weston-Super-Mare Band c1922

Weston-Super-Mare Band c1932

 

If any one else has done any research into Salvation Army concertina bands, please share through this group, or contact me direct.....

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Hi Malcolm,

I've been sorting out photos and found another one of Doncaster Citadel Concertina Band, taken in 1984, complete with names. As I came to Australia in 1977, I wasn't present, although I'm in the photo of the 3 bands in Bristol.

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Looking at the faces it seems there were no new young recruits, they are just the same people getting older as time goes on and the ranks thinning...

 

Chris

I was 21 when the photo of Doncaster band was taken in 1967 and 2 others were only slightly older, but most members were 20 or more years older than me.

 

Rita

Edited by Rita

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Malcolm, I would reckon it's a bass English with wrist, as well as thumb, straps.

 

Nice one indeed Chris !

 

Thanks to both of you, I now know who some of my Salvation Army photos are of, though I've also got some earlier, 1880's/'90's, cabinet photographs of individual Salvationists & their concertinas.

 

Stephen

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Malcolm, I would reckon it's a bass English with wrist, as well as thumb, straps.

 

Nice one indeed Chris !

 

Thanks to both of you, I now know who some of my Salvation Army photos are of, though I've also got some earlier, 1880's/'90's, cabinet photographs of individual Salvationists & their concertinas.

 

Stephen

 

It was a bass concertina, which only produced a note when pushed, you had to pull out the bellows first. The player was Mr. Alderson

 

Rita

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Not sure why I missed these postings.

In amongst the Peter Trimming personal recordings collection, as he mentions earlier, is some recordings of the Plymouth Citadel concertina Band. I requested and obtained permission from the Plymouth Headquarters to use these recordings for a future project ,probably now the Concertina Band/Group CD ,but has an outside chance of getting on Duet International.

Al

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Guest HallelujahAl!

From what I remember Alan I can't think the Plymouth Citadel Band would have had that many Duets - would've been mainly English's I'd have thought? But I'm looking forward to hearing any SA concertina band music - so if anyone's got any recordings they'd be happy to let this SA officer have a listen to, I'd be very grateful! Looking forward to Duet & Bands International respectively! I once had in my possession a lovely Eb tenor EC that was played in Dumfries Citadel Concertina band - played like a dream - but there's a story to the instruments in Dumfries Citadel, most of which were scrapped and sold off after a flood did unmentionable damage to the citadel buildings. I'm pretty sure that only the brass instruments were replaced - Lord knows why! :lol:

Regards

AL

Not sure why I missed these postings.

In amongst the Peter Trimming personal recordings collection, as he mentions earlier, is some recordings of the Plymouth Citadel concertina Band. I requested and obtained permission from the Plymouth Headquarters to use these recordings for a future project ,probably now the Concertina Band/Group CD ,but has an outside chance of getting on Duet International.

Al

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- but there's a story to the instruments in Dumfries Citadel, most of which were scrapped and sold off after a flood did unmentionable damage to the citadel buildings.

 

I have a Lachenal EC here that I bought a couple of years ago from the family of a deceased player. It has two sets of reed pans, in A=440, one in "brass band" high pitch. Both sets of reedpans have the same serial number, and there is a nice little box for the spare set. I wonder if they might have belonged to someone who played with the SA??

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From what I remember Alan I can't think the Plymouth Citadel Band would have had that many Duets - would've been mainly English's I'd have thought? But I'm looking forward to hearing any SA concertina band music - so if anyone's got any recordings they'd be happy to let this SA officer have a listen to, I'd be very grateful! Looking forward to Duet & Bands International respectively! I once had in my possession a lovely Eb tenor EC that was played in Dumfries Citadel Concertina band - played like a dream - but there's a story to the instruments in Dumfries Citadel, most of which were scrapped and sold off after a flood did unmentionable damage to the citadel buildings. I'm pretty sure that only the brass instruments were replaced - Lord knows why! :lol:

Regards

AL

Not sure why I missed these postings.

In amongst the Peter Trimming personal recordings collection, as he mentions earlier, is some recordings of the Plymouth Citadel concertina Band. I requested and obtained permission from the Plymouth Headquarters to use these recordings for a future project ,probably now the Concertina Band/Group CD ,but has an outside chance of getting on Duet International.

Al

Al ,Peter told me that a number of players were playing Duets which would just about make it eligible.My preference would be the Band CD

Please send me your Email address

Al

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Guest HallelujahAl!
Peter told me that a number of players were playing Duets which would just about make it eligible

 

Ah, that would explain it. Have sent you a pm.

AL

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