Old Swan Band, Still Swanning... after all these years!

Free Reed Records FRCD 31 (CD, UK, 1995)

Old Swan is widely acknowledged as the spearhead of the continuing revival of English southern country dance music. Their first two albums were released on Neil Wayne's 'Free Reed' record label: 'No Reels' and,  in 1978, 'Old Swan Brand'. Their 3rd LP, on Dingles Records,  'Gamesters, Pickpockets & Harlots' was exclusively composed of newly discovered Cotswold material. The 1983 line-up, including John Adams, Paul Burgess and Richard Valentine, has recorded an 4-track EP for Waterfront, their last record until now!  This “21st anniversary” celebratory CD  includes the very best material from all four of these long-lost recordings. It also adds detailed tune notes by founder-member and melodeon maestro Rod Stradling and a wry and nostalgic 'Recollection' of the Band's 21 years by Dan Quinn, once of Flowers & Frolics and now of Gas Mark Five. As with all of Free Reed's old vinyl releases, Neil Wayne's resurgent CD-based label adds a great value: "Still Swanning..." has a decent and readable 12-pages booklet crammed with great archive photos, detailed tune notes, a thorough discography and an amusing history of the Band.


1) Walter Bulwer's Polkas, 1 and 2 (Trad arr Rod Stradling) - 2) Bonnets so Blue / Starry Night for a Randy / Uncle's Jig (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 3) Not for Joe / Oscar Wood's Polka / Heel and Toe Polka (Trad arr Rod Stradling) - 4) The Man in the Moon / Fire Burning Bright / Varsoviarna (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 5) Dannish Waltz / Indian Polka / Rigs of Marlow (Trad arr Rod Stradling) - 6) Dan Leno's Boat (Trad arr Rod Stradling) - 7) Sherbourne Waltz / Lovely Nancy (Trad arr Rod Stradling) - 8) Curley Headed Ploughboy / The Quaker / Three around Three (Trad arr Rod Stradling) - 9) The Rose Polka (Laybourne) / JB Milne's Polka (Fitchett) - 10) The Matelot / Michael Turner's Jig / Captain Lemo's Slow March (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 11) Can't Stop Polka / Evesham Stick Dance (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 12) Symondsbury / Mummer's Tune / Dr Casey's Finbook / My Love, My Love (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 13) Trip to the Forest / The Triumph / Bourton Six (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 14) Speed the Plough (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 15) Staffordshire Hornpipe / Mad Moll of the Cheshire Hunts (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 16) Woodcutter's Jig (P.Headford) / Swedish Dance (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 17) Little Polly / Double Eight Figure (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 18) Old Heddon of Fawley / The Marriage Vow (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 19) Gloucester Hornpipe / Polly put the Kettle on (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 20) Give us some Treacle and Bread (Trad arr Old Swan band) / Mrs Caxton's Polka (P.Rush) - 21) Worcestershire Hornpipe / Morning Star (Trad arr Old Swan band) - 22) The Vine Tree (P.Burgess) - 23) The Sloe (Trad arr Old Swan band)