The Gnomes, Vaudeville Entertainers

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The Gnomes, Vaudeville Entertainers

The Gnomes, Vaudeville entertainers (photo on Flickr)

Almost a hundred years ago, my great grandparents (my father’s father’s parents) were in The Gnomes, a group of London-based vaudeville entertainers.

My great-grandfather, Edgar Sidney (standing on the right in this photograph), directed the group. He wrote the words for the “humorous song” I’m going to grow a moustache (photo of front cover).

My great-grandmother Gertrude Clive (second from the left in the photograph), was an accomplished piano accompanist.

The full line-up of The Gnomes (from photo of hire sheet):

  • Gladys Glover, Soprano
  • Mamie Bell, Comedienne
  • Gertrude Clive, Accompanist
  • Geoffrey Arnott, Baritone
  • Marshall Holt, Comedian
  • Edgar Sidney, Entertainer

If anybody has any further information about The Gnomes (sometimes also known as The Merry Gnomes), it would be great to hear from you.

Double espresso –

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Inspired by Tom Coombs’s recent “Have you seen…?” post, here are some of the things I’ve been banging on about recently over a double espresso. First…

Last FM plays you music while you’re online. It can create your own personalised radio station based the music you like, using its audioscrobbler music recommendation system. Connect it to iTunes to learn what you’re in to. Or just go to the site and type in the name of a band you like and start listening.

Click the heart symbol in the music player to “Love this track” and your radio station gets ever more tailored to you.

I’m listening over at

Starting life in East London in 2002, has really come in to its own with the proliferation of broadband and now mobile broadband. In 2007 was bought by CBS.

Every track you play will tell your profile something about what you like. It can connect you to other people who like what you like – and recommend songs from their music collections and yours too.


I’ve heard good things about the iPhone app.

And finally if, like me, you like to sing along from time to time, check out Lyrics Muse – which combines with a lyrics wiki to display the lyrics of the song you’re listening to in real time. And as the source is a wiki, if you think the lyrics displayed are wrong, you can always go and correct them.

Sounds like it should be a blast

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If you’ll pardon the pun.

I’ve just been sent this info about an event taking place in July. I’ve added in the link showing where the venue is on Google maps.

Title: Gas Organ exhibition
Venue: The Sassoon Gallery
Location: Blenheim Grove, Peckham Rye, London SE15
Date: 16th – 18th July
Time: Midday – 9pm
Cost: Free

On three sultry nights in July, the sepulchral vault of Peckham’s underground venue The Sassoon Gallery will reverberate to the eerily melancholic strains of the infamous Gas Organ.

The Brain-child of founding collaborators Lou Smith and Rufus Burdett, the Gas Organ is a fabulous musical instrument, able to play itself, or be controlled or played remotely.

Constructed from freely available plumbing, electrical and laboratory components, the Gas Organ is a fusion of Art, Science and Engineering, beautiful in its clinical appearance and mesmerising in its auditory effect. Witnesses of the event have their credulity challenged as they view the ephemeral chaotic turbulence of a flame producing such incredible range and depth of sound; how can a science lab experiment evoke such an emotional response as this? I am watching this, but I don’t believe it.


I will definitely be checking it out.

Pazzazz Music taster session this weekend in Dulwich

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This sounds like fun

Pazzazz Music is led by professional performers and educators from the UK’s top arts establishments. Pazzazz Music is the only music club for these ages of 4 to 7 that embraces conventional music training but also uses the children’s creativity as a core educational principle.

During each 6 week course the children will produce and perform a composition that will be recorded onto their own CD! Within the composition process we address the fundamental skills, essential for their future music education.

The classes are open access, anyone interested is welcome to attend, regardless of any previous musical training.

Taster sessions in Dulwich at 1pm-3pm on Saturday 4th Feb, and Greenwich at 1pm-3pm on Saturday 11th Feb.

More info here at

And Joanna did the website 🙂

Driving to

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  1. The Killers – Hot Fuss
    Massive tracks – remind me of The Cure, The Psychedelic Furs and U2

  2. Athlete – Tourist
    Deptford’s Coldplay (ducks for cover)

  3. Hothouse Flowers – Home
    Probably more famous for their 1980s hit “Don’t Go” from a different album. “I can see clearly now” and “Movies”, two tracks back to back in the middle of this album take me back to my days at Southampton University in 1988-1990.

  4. Supergrass – In It For The Money
    Saw them play live at an Xfm gig in Islington last year – very energetic that Gaz Coombes

  5. Jack Dee – Live (somewhere)…
    Free with the Observer a few months ago. Funny bloke.

  6. Norah Jones – Feels Like Home
    Soothing stuff

  7. U2 – How to dismantle an atomic bomb

  8. Coldplay – A Rush of Blood to the Head
    I like the piano in clocks

  9. Empty slot for some reason

  10. Scissor Sisters – Scissor Sisters
    My two-year old son always requests this one

I really must get an MP3 player…