Monthly Archives: May 2018

Music from other performers who’s songs will take them into the nineteen thirties.

Albert Alick Bowlly [Al Bowlly] was born to Greek and Lebanese parents who had met en- route to Australia.  They moved to South Africa and their child was brought up in Johannesburg! After a series of odd jobs across South Africa, including being a barber and a jockey!  At the same time Al gained his […]

The ‘good’ and the ‘bad’ of the 1920’s

By the mid-1920s jazz was thriving in Britain with its popularity being boosted by the Melody Maker, a music newspaper which first appeared in January 1926, as well as by radio programmes from the recently launched British Broadcasting Corporation. However this mid-1920s post-war period of prosperity was soon to be well and truly over. The […]

A story of a soccer team

I’ve been a Manchester United supporter ever since they beat Blackpool 4-2 to win the FA Cup at Wembley in 1948.  Twenty years later – on Wednesday 29th May 1968 – I was on tenterhooks as I listened to another game at Wembley.  This one was the European Cup Final between Manchester United and the […]

The Actions of a King many years ago

It was on Thursday 27th May 1199 at Westminster Abbey that John was crowned King of a kingdom that stretched from Berwick in the north to Bordeaux in the south – the great Angevin Empire. The youngest of the eight children of King Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine John had been last in the […]

Ragtime moves on to Jazz in 1920’s Britain

Jazz music burst into mainstream Britain in 1919, with the arrival of the Original Dixieland Jazz Band.   The popularity of ragtime music in the Edwardian era laid the foundations for the acceptance of this syncopated music and its black (and sometimes white) musicians. During most of the First World War, Dan Kildare and his orchestra […]

The day in May when a tornado came to southern England

Do you remember Sunday 21st May 1950 when a tornado swept across southern England?  I certainly do.  The BBC reported that: ‘Two people have died in violent storms and a tornado which have devastated southern England. Several others were injured in lightning strikes and fierce winds which caused massive damage to property around London.’ The […]

Tuesday 18th May 1830 – the birth of a mower

At some time before this day Edwin Budding, an engineer from Stroud, Gloucestershire, had watched a machine in a local cloth mill that used a cutting cylinder/bladed reel mounted on a bench to trim the irregular nap from the surface of woollen cloth and give a smooth finish. This gave him an idea – ‘could […]