Orpington Folk Club
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Rockin' Barn Dance

The Albion Dance Band Talking Elephant Records TECD154

www.talkingelephant.co.uk

Having no press release for this CD I have had to trawl the web to get background information. There is no doubt that Ashley Hutchings started the ‘Albion Band' in 1971 and over the years it has had dozens of members. This line up stems from 1988 and is recorded at a 'live' barn dance. (A lot of the repertoire is common to the 1988 recording 'I Got New Shoes").
The main body of the tunes were provided by Simon Care (melodeon) and Phil Beer (mandolin and fiddle). Instrumental solos were contributed Phil on electric guitar and Pete Zorn on saxes, Ashley did the calling and Polly Bolton contributed two songs.
To add variety, the band used songs along with tunes in the dances. For example in 'Jack's the Lad’, the tune 'Sherwood Rangers' turns into the song 'Time To Ring Some Changes' and then goes back to the tune to finish. The barn dance calls are irrelevant - but they do distract you from the tunes -especially if you try and work out what the dancers are doing!
The CD lists 12 tracks but on my copy there are 13. Sid Kipper appears as, ‘guest caller' on 'Dashing White Privates' which extends over two tracks and uses the same tune - 'Irish Washerwoman' for both.

Ivan North.


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