Austin John Marshall, record producer, folk-revival ideas man, lyricist and songwriter, performance poet and muralist, created, nurtured or acted as cultural midwife to many strands of art. His fingerprints are all over Shirley Collins & Davy Graham's folk roots, new routes, Shirley & Dolly Collins' magnum opus Anthems in Eden, Ultravox!'s pre-Midge Ure incarnation Tiger Lily and English songwriter Steve Ashley's groundbreaking Stroll On. He also contributed footage to Peter Neal's Jimi Hendrix film Rainbow Bridge (1972) and to the Incredible String Band's film Be Glad for the Song Has No Ending (1970).
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Thursday 14 March 1996
In the European imagination, American operas of a certain age never quite escape the shadow of Broadway: if we want that, we'll have the genuine article, thanks.
Sunday 31 July 1994
BLESSED with the voice of Billie Holiday in the body of Jimmy Clitheroe, Little Jimmy Scott is the most affecting singer of slow, sentimental ballads there is. A doll-like figure, whose flailing arms act out the psychodrama of each song as if the shop-worn lyrics told the story of his life (and if they possess enough pain and loss, they do), Scott is just about the last of his line - the lachrymose- jazz-meets-R&B vocalists of the Forties and Fifties. Now aged 69, with three decades of bad luck and obscurity behind him, he's happily enjoying a late renaissance. He has an excellent new album (Dream, Sire), and this week he plays the Purcell Room in the South Bank's 'Now You See It . . .' season, an imaginative mixture of music, dance and performance linked by the promise that the artists involved will be taking risks rather than taking stock. (See Jazz, below, for details.)
Wednesday 11 May 1994
For copyright reasons we are not able to provide the full text of the poem on this database. Following are the details of the publication in which it appears.
THEATRE / He makes 'em like they used to: Lloyd Webber has always harked back to bitter-sweet, old world glamour
Wednesday 14 July 1993
FRANZ WAXMAN, who scored the original, would have killed for Lloyd Webber's main title theme - one of those dark, broody, slightly tarnished melodies with Hollywood nostalgia written all over it. The trick about pastiche is always to go one better than your original, make it your own. It isn't true that you can't spot a Lloyd Webber tune, that his melodies are somehow anonymous, even second-hand. The big lyric ballads are of course his stock- in-trade and he delivers an absolute corker within minutes of the opening of Sunset. 'With One Look' is archetypally Lloyd Webber: it's the hymnic quality, the way the melody achieves uplift and surprise with the second four-bar phase (that's the bit you go out humming), it's the urgency of the middle-eight.
Friday 04 June 1993
ONCE it was big and, yes, 'operatic' in its thumping Grand Guignol gestures, its Gothic chorales. But now I'm convinced that the future of Sondheim's remarkable score is here, in the raw, unvarnished, awful truth of its chamber version.
Saturday 05 December 1992
AN UNKNOWN set of debut recordings by Henry Wood has been discovered by a student in the basement of the Royal Academy of Music in London, writes Norman Lebrecht. The 1908 acoustic discs were found in a cupboard by Jonathan Dobson, who was working as a library assistant to help pay his fees. The records had been left to the Academy in Wood's will in 1944, but had never been catalogued or identified.
BOOKS / Songs with the sound of the sea: Jamie McKendrick salutes Charles Causley, the Cornish balladeer who will be 75 tomorrow
Sunday 23 August 1992
'ANCIENT salt is the best packing' was Yeats's argument for traditional forms in poetry. In Charles Causley's Collected Poems (Macmillan pounds 25), salt is both packing and contents: his preferred form is the ballad and his subject matter the sea. His war years in the Navy and a life spent in Cornwall, with 'Sea to the north, the south', may account for his subject, but his choice of the ballad is harder to explain. While most recent British poetry is painstakingly loyal to the speaking voice, Causley has been steadily working in a voice which sings: 'And caught in the snare of the bleeding air / The butcher-bird sings, sings, sings.'
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