Sing Something Swingy

Here at Polesden we have a fantastic collection of 78rpm records that we play on our gramophones on the Balcony and in the Billiard Room. I’ve been doing some research into the records and compiling a full list of them so we can get them on our inventory and also make sure we are playing the records that Mrs Greville would have heard. Last year I spent some time researching our collection and compiling a list of what we have here; an enjoyable job made frustrating by the lack of recording dates on the records themselves. At this point I should bless the geeks on the internet who have compiled lists for some of the record labels which made my job a lot easier for some, but it turns out that a lot of the records we have are from labels that only lasted a few years.

Ben Hammond’s ‘Sing Something Swingy’ on the Crown label, which was only in production between 1935 and 1936

Ben Hammond’s ‘Sing Something Swingy’ on the Crown label, which was only in production between 1935 and 1936

Things that I now know from this research include the fact that Harry Bidgood used a minimum of eighteen pseudonyms, we have Ivor Novello and Gracie Fields’ earliest published recordings, and that some of the names of the bands can put a smile on the house team’s faces even after a long day in the office.

Gracie Fields and Ivor Novello

Gracie Fields and Ivor Novello

The final count stands at 337 records with 80 of those out for use at any one time, with recordings dating between 1914 and September 1942. Now we know what we have in the collection, all I have to do is record them on the online inventory, inventory mark them and photograph them!

 

Helen Taylor

Assistant House Steward (Conservation and Collection Care)

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