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Before the Night Was Out ... East Anglian music book

 

To buy this book, click here.

 

'If I heard a good tune, I'd have it before the night was out!'

 

Through the twentieth century, music has been recorded from traditional musicians in Suffolk and Norfolk, and now many of the most important and unusual of these lively dance tunes are available in a printed collection.

 

Tune books from various regions in England have been published in recent years. To present something from East Anglia, a region renowned for its traditional music throughout the twentieth century, has proved something of a conundrum: how to portray in written form what is essentially an oral tradition? Before the Night Was Out aims to shed light on the way in which traditional music in Suffolk and Norfolk has thrived and mutated during the twentieth century, as well as providing a resource for practising musicians.

 

It is therefore a rather different kind of tune book…

A sample of the contents is available here. You can order it now from our online shop.

 

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We launched our new book Before the Night Was Out on Twelfth Night 2008, at the Riverside Centre, Stratford St Andrew, Suffolk, with a large gathering of musicians and most of the editorial team. Many of the tunes in the book were played, and Tom Knight brought along Billy Bennington’s dulcimer for the occasion, and played some of Billy’s tunes on it.

What the readers say ...

 

“What a wonderful book! (in terms of immediate, joyous impact , it puts me in mind of when I first stumbled across the Sussex Tunebook many moons ago.) Great presentation of tunes, biogs and pictures … makes me realise how little I know of the East Anglian music tradition.”

Andy Lyddiatt

“The book is excellent … it’s not often that a tune book is a really interesting read as well!”

John Messenger

 

“Even when you know the 'versions' and their idiosyncracies it somehow highlights them to see them transcribed. I feel I am a step closer to them now. “

Roger Digby

 

“I am very pleased with the book and have started learning tunes from it, including some I failed to master from recordings.”

Rollo Woods

“This is, in my opinion, almost exactly what a good tunes book should be; one which centres its attention on the players and their musical contexts, and uses the tunes as illustrations.  By the end of it you have been given an extremely complete picture of the traditional musical life of East Anglia in the mid- to late-20th century. This makes it a far more useful guide to playing southern English traditional music well, or properly, than a more conventional book of tunes of the sort we have become used to can ever do … I have never seen this material better covered … This outstanding book is … your best purchase of 2008, so far.”

Rod Stradling, Musical Traditions magazine

 

“Congratulations to all concerned, especially for the superb (and easy to read, if not necessarily to play) transcriptions ... it reinforces that a tradition isn't static, but develops and changes over time and space to meet the musical needs of the time ...I really could have done with this book being around in 1983 - it would have made starting playing English music much easier. Seeing the tunes written down so accurately really
emphasises how subtle and complicated many "rough" English musicians were (and are).”

Tim Willets

 

“Just wanted to say thanks for producing such a great tunebook - this is how they all should be, with background and information about the musicians, different versions of the tunes, and a discography. Thank you! It's been a joy to browse through, pulling together various threads from years of playing - I hadn't realised how much of the repertoire I thought came from the west country, actually comes from East Anglia. Thank you!”

Pippa Sandford

 

“There are quite a few reasons for the excitement surrounding this book … perhaps the most important reason this book is causing a stir is that it is very different from other tune books … few people have attempted to compile and publish this sort of book, not least because of the huge amount of detail involved. Before the Night was Out is an important, groundbreaking publication.”

Gavin Atkin, English Dance and Song, Spring 2008.

 

 

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Home      News      Diary of events    About EATMT     Friends of EATMT     

What are the musical traditions of East Anglia?

Traditional Music Day     Melodeons & More      Workshops, classes & schools      Community Projects       

          Profiles of traditional musicians        Research         Jig Dolls        Dulcimers     Stepdancing

Resources      Shop        Links      Press Room     Contact Us