Request Box

 

Many people contact me with all kinds of requests about the dance band period, especially requests for particular songs. As dance band fans we want to hear our kind of music. It's more difficult now because the BBC has quite arbitrarily axed all dance band music pre - 1940 from its mainstream schedules. Once again, if it is thought that copyright has been broken, I shall be happy to remove any of the following items.  

 

Click below for Roy Fox - ‘Whispering’ CD jewel case

Insert


Roy Fox CD.doc

The CD below is a trial CD, comprising of my own 78 rpm recordings. These are in the public domain. The CD is a trial run for a future CD project that I have in mind, so any comments are welcome. It’s a catch 22 situation. As fans we are seeing less dance band material on the radio and CD, hence this free one. But of course, by offering free CDs, we offer less incentive for companies to release our kind of material.


Restoration is by myself. I’m not an expert in sound restoration, but hopefully I am improving. I have ordered the tracks in the following order deliberately so that the whole CD is a pleasant listening experience. The CD is available for free but do not use any part of it for any commercial purpose. Please download and enjoy. Right click the file to download.

Roy Fox and His Orchestra - Volume 2 - ‘Singing A Happy Song’


This CD presents more of Roy’s band in the years following his departure from the Monseigneur Restaurant. Roy played at the ‘Kit Cat’ Club and the Cafe De Paris. He also broadcast regularly on the BBC and made many recordings for broadcast on commercial radio, notably, Radio Luxembourg.  The CD is made up of my own 78‘s and restorations are by myself. The recordings are in the public domain. The CD is free to download, but please do not use it for any commercial purpose. 


Click on the title to play the track. Right click the track and select ‘download file as’ - to download the track. The notes for the Jewel case can also be downloaded. Happy listening!


Roy Fox CD vol 2.doc

01 - singing a happy song.mp3                                                   

02 - so rare.mp3                                                                          

03 - love was a song.mp3                                                            

04 - MOON FOR SALE.mp3

05 - sidewalks of cuba.mp3

06 - you turned your head.mp3

07 - hands across the table.mp3

08 - the very thought of you.mp3

09 -  shoe shine boy.mp3

10 - TUNE IN.mp3

11 - bird on the wing.mp3

12 - riding down the sunset trail.mp3

13 - i've got a shoe.mp3

14 - paddy.mp3

15 - MY CABIN OF DREAMS.mp3

16 - cherokee.mp3

17 - fair and warmer.mp3

18 -  at the end of the day.mp3


Roy Fox CD vol 2.doc           Jewel case - right click to download

RADIO PIRATES.mp4      (Later retitled to ‘Big Ben Calling’)


If the film will not play, right click and download


This rather rare clip comes from the 1935 film, also starred a young Hughie Green, as well as the Roy Fox Orchestra. The plot is quite simple, a group of youngsters start a pirate radio station, with the authorities trying hard to shut them down.


Of all the material that could have been included, the film makers chose ‘Hillbilly’ favourites. We hear ‘Wagon Wheels’, ‘On The Lone Prairie’, Denny sings ‘Home On The Range’, a snippet of guitar by Ivor Mairants, followed by ‘Old Faithful, sung by trumpeter Sid Buckman. As the film progresses we hear Denny sing, and have a brief glimpse of Denny singing, ‘Little Girl, What Now?’. I doubt that Denny was actually playing the guitar in the film.

This a little bit of fun and recalls the wonderful and very popular 10” LPs of the 50s. The CD features some lovely recordings from three of the top British dance bands of the 30s, also showing the quality of some of Denny’s vocal competition. Denny was only one of many top vocalists of the period. The recordings are from my own 78s. Indeed, they were destined for the skip when I rescued them from a junk shop for the handsome sum of 11/-  (that’s 55p to the younger generation). I have cleaned them up, and I hope you will agree, several have cleaned up well and sound very nice. Please enjoy, but do not use for any commercial purpose.


Right click to download



01 - I'm Feeling Happy-Henry Hall BBC DO - Dan Donovan 28-9-35.mp3

02 - THE DAY YOU CAME ALONG-Henry Hall BBC DO - Les Allen 16-10-33.mp3

03 - LOVELY LADY MOON-Billy Cotton Band - Cyril Grantham 3-7-31.mp3

04 - MANY HAPPY RETURNS OF THE DAY - Henry Hall BBC DO - Dan Donovan & Ch 28-9-35.mp3

05 - CAN THIS BE LOVE? - Billy Cotton Band - Cyril Grantham  3-7-31.mp3

06 - YOU TOOK THE WORDS RIGHT OUT OF MY HEART - Roy Fox and Orch - Denny Dennis  15-2-38.mp307

07 - THANKS - Henry Hall BBC DO - Les Allen  16-10-33.mp3

08 - COWBOY-Roy Fox and Orch - Denny Dennis  9-1-37.mp3





British Dance Bands of the 1930s - scans v2.doc




Equalisation and the restoration of 78s


I am no expert. Indeed, experts use very very expensive equipment, beyond the means of my pocket money. But it is surprising what can be done on a home pc with modern software, and some correct hardware. Some discussion of equalisation has occurred on the Yahoo ‘British Dance Band Group’ recently. Equalisation is a way of understanding the frequencies / bass and treble -  in a more detailed manner, of various recordings. Since the mid 50s equalisation has been standardised. Our modern hi fi equipment has the means to play the music with this standard equalisation. It is called the RIAA curve. Modern recordings are made with this in mind. The problem is - 78s before this time had different equalisation applied in the recording process. This varied according to date of recordings, the record company, and the engineer setting up the equipment. None of them were recorded with the RIAA equalisation. When you play an old 78 on modern equipment, the equipment will apply the RIAA curve to what you hear. The result is a often a muddy, sometimes over bassy sound.


The ultimate test for me is - do I like what I hear and can I hear the percussion well enough, without being too intrusive into the overall recording. Our ears and taste are what matters.


Below is an opportunity to restore your own 78 rpm record. Any audio restoration on a pc should be done with a full size wav file. Audio restoration programmes find compressed files such as mp3 files difficult as the programme is not designed for it.


The Click Repair programme can be found with the following link.   http://www.clickrepair.net/     

The re- equalisation programme is free. The rest requires purchase.


Here is a recording of Denny Dennis with Roy Fox and his Orchestra. It is the wonderful version of ‘You Took The Words Right Out of My Heart’. HMV BD5330   Recorded 15 - 2 - 38


The first is the raw transfer from an excellent quality 78, with applied RIAA curve common to modern hi fi equipment.

The second is my restoration completed with Click Repair programme. Plus final edit and trim with Audacity

The third file is a professional restoration using CEDAR technology.


Both restorations are from the original transfer below:


YOU TOOK THE WORDS RIGHT OUT OF MY HEART - HMV - E.wav


YOU TOOK THE WORDS RIGHT OUT OF MY HEART - Click Repair.WAV


YOU TOOK THE WORDS RIGHT OUT OF MY HEART - CEDAR.WAV




Equalisation demystified - Podcast by Don Ward


Don Ward has made a very interesting podcast on equalisation. Don shows the difference between the RIAA curve applied on most modern equipment to old 78s, and what they sound like with the correct equalisation applied. Thanks Don for taking the time and trouble, and for some very interesting vintage recordings.



Equalisation demystified -podcast by Don Ward - June 2016.mp3




Request for rare REX recordings:


A few REX 78s appear below - requested by a listener. The following are presented in full size wav format. Right click to download. Click to play.


The recordings come from less than perfect records / 78s and some are in very poor condition. They are not restored, but simply cleaned up a little - and some contain quite a lot of surface noise. I have left this in to preserve something of the integrity of the recording. It would be nice to see a cd of Denny’s REX material, but a supply of mint condition 78s would be a starting point. The 78s feature Arthur Young on the Novachord.


FAITHFUL FOREVER.wav

I HEAR A DREAM.wav 

WHERE OR WHEN.wav

WHERE OR WHEN - from LP.wav

GOODNIGHT MY BEAUTIFUL.wav

MY ROMANCE.wav

WEEP NO MORE.wav

SIERRA SUE.wav

WEEP NO MORE.wav

INTERMEZZO.WAV

I'LL WALK BESIDE YOU.wav



Below is the original transfer from the 78. Recorded with applied RIAA curve on a record deck - via amp - to cd recorder. It requires the application of the correct equalisation as part of a restoration. Have a go at restoration with your own programme. Right click to download.


FAITHFUL FOREVER - REX  E-.wav


REX 9723    Recorded 19-1-40 with Arthur Young on the Novachord