REC 129 Horace Finch at the organ of the Empress Ballroom, Blackpool

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Picture of albums Horace Finch at the organ of the Empress Ballroom, Blackpool (Various)

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Release details

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Catalogue numberREC 129
Sleeve picturePicture of REC 129 Horace Finch at the organ of the Empress Ballroom, Blackpool by artist Various from the BBC records and Tapes library
TitleHorace Finch at the organ of the Empress Ballroom, Blackpool
Cover conditionNear mint
Record conditionNear mint
BBC records label codeC
BBC Records label
Item deleted?Yes
LabelBBC Records
BBC%20Records label
Distributed / printed byE. J. Day Group, London and Bedford
Media typePrimary
Media genreMusic - Popular View all other tracks listed as Music - Popular.
Run-off codes / Shop bar codesRE + 129 + 1 + 1 BBC
RE + 129 + 2 + 1 BBC
My ratingNot set
Guest ratingCurrent average value is 3.

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Number have1
What type of seller was used?Not recorded

Release pictures

Below is all the cover (front, back, middle and inserts if applicable) and label pictures I have for this release.
Front cover
Front cover of REC 129
Back cover
Back cover of REC 129
Label Label


Below is a list of tracks for this release.
Side & trackTrack and ArtistLength
A1Signature tune; On the prom, prom, promenade [Evans]
A2With a little bit of luck [Loewe]
A3I'll walk beside you [Murray]
A4Firefly [Phillips]
A5 See me deance the Polka [Grossmith / Arr. Finch]
A6Stephanie Gavotte [Czibulka]
A7Who's sorry now? [Snyder]
A8The snake [Martinez]
A9The whistling sergeant major [Bernard]
A10 The world outside [Addinsell]
A11Who were you with last night ? [Godfrey / Sheridan]
A12As I love you [Livingston / Evans]
A13Everybody's doing it [Berlin]
A14In apple blossom time [Von Tilzer]
B1 Under the double eagle [J. F. Wagner]
B2 Sonny boy [Desylva / Brown / Henderson]
B3Pretty baby [Jackson / Van Alstyne]
B4Carolina in the morning [Donaldson]
B5Swanee [Gershwin]
B6Toot toot tootsie [Keyes / Erdman / Russo]
B7Waiting for the Robert E. Lee [Muir]
B8Over the rainbow [Arlen]
B9Windmill samba [Camilleri]
B10 Chicago [Fisher]
B11Magic moments [Bacharach]
B12Ma, he's making eyes at me [Conrad]
B13April love [Pain]
B14Sugartime [Phillips]
B15The story of my life [Bacharach]
B16Sophia [Rober]
B17Signature tune; On the prom, prom, promenade [Evans]
Total length of media 0:00.

More information

Below is further information captured for this release.

Extra notes on cover, middle (gatefold sleeve) and any inserts

Horace Finch - Organist supreme; a perfectionist and ... a legend in his own life-time. Born St. Helens, Lancashire; a church organist at nine; solo and orchestral pianist, eleven years later, the the famous Blackpool Tower Orchestra and in 1927, the first English pianist to play, in public and from memory, George Gershwin's, ''Rhapsody in Blue''. Eight years later, appointed solo organist in the huge Empress Ballroom, in the Winter Gardens, Blackpool, playing for dancing, six days per week with afternoon and evening recitals of ''light'' music each Sunday. He was an immediate success and in addition to becoming a ''force majeure'' in the ballroom and on Radio, by 1939, he was recording ''star'' for ''Rex'' records - the same company for which his famous colleague, at the Tower, also recorded! In the same year, he was appointed solo organist in the New Opera House, playing the magnificent Wurlitzer, built to his own specification. Limited broadcasts were maintained throughout his service with the R. A. F., but during this period, much of his playing was on Hammond organs for camp concerts and dances plus ''charity concerts'' at various venues, as a result of which, he was twice ''mentioned in dispatches'' and is the proud possessor of a personally hand-written letter of thanks from Mrs. Winston Churchill.

Throughout this remarkable recording, the unique style of Horace Finch is apparent. There is a brightness and accuracy of playing. Unnecessary ''frills'', drawn-out modulations are moitted and the use of ''full organ'' is carefully controlled. Frequently, one sustained note replaces the usual wandering counter-melody and invariably, ''second touch'' is used to allow the left hand to provide both melody and accompaniment whilst the right hand adds free but musical improvisation. Without doubt, Horace was a master of registration, often using but two or three stops in combination, resulting in unsurpassed clarity and brilliance of tone, indicating the mastery of both music and organ. At all times, precise and careful attention w2as paid to the use of the swell pedals and incessant application of the general crescendo pedal was meticulously avoided. The ''cathedral-like'' properties of the Empress Ballroom, so disturbing to lesser musicians, were actually used to extremely good effect and possibly even to the extent of enhancing his playing. Horace Finch may well have been flattered - but never successfully, imitated! Despite the permanently damaged third finger of his left handf, the result of the tragic accident in 1962, which brought an abrupt end to his career of this great organist, Horace now lives, in happy retirement, with his wife, Dorothy and Boxer dog, ''Ringo''.

Undoubtedly, this is not merely a recording of his past musical achievements but a testimony of his lasting popularity and an indication of gratitude from the millions of people to whom he gave so much pleasure.

Side I broadcast in the Light Programme on 5.3.59.
Side 2 broadcast in the Light Programme on 20.3.58.

This record was made from tape recordings of 'live' broadcasts from the Empress Ballroom, Blackpool.

Further information

BBC Radio Enterprises Ltd and BBC Enterprises Ltd, predecessors of BBC Worldwide / BBC Worldwide Ltd., the BBC's commercial arm. Formed 1968 and 1979 respectively, they were a subsidiary wholly owned by the BBC and merged into BBC Worldwide in 1995. In that time, there were companies set up within or structured brands as part of the company to deal with separate parts of the business, e.g. BBC Records for recorded audio. Sometimes written as BBC Enterprise Ltd.

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