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Frank Chacksfield

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Category: Music - Popular
Reference No: 8866
Status: Available
Price: £8.00
  Frank Chacksfield

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English pianist, organist, composer and conductor of popular light orchestral "easy listening" music.

At the beginning of World War II, he joined the Royal Corps of Signals, and, following a radio broadcast as a pianist, was posted to ENSA at Salisbury where he became the arranger for Stars in Battledress, an armed forces entertainment troupe, and shared an office with comedian Charlie Chester.

After the war, he worked with Chester and on BBC Radio as an arranger and conductor. He also worked as musical director for both Henry Hall and Geraldo, and began recording under his own name in 1951 as "Frank Chacksfield's Tunesmiths". In early 1953, he had his first top ten hit, "Little Red Monkey", on the Parlophone label. This was a novelty recording and the first record featuring an electronic instrument to feature on the UK pop chart.

Chacksfield signed a recording contract with Decca Records in 1953, and formed a 40-piece orchestra with a large string section, the "Singing Strings". His first record release for Decca, Charlie Chaplin's theme for his film Limelight, won him a gold disc in the United States, and in Britain, where it reached No. 2 in the UK Singles Chart, and won him the NME award as 'Record of the Year'. His next single, "Ebb Tide", earned him a second gold disc, and he was voted the most promising new orchestra of the year in the US.

Chacksfield became one of Britain's best-known orchestra leaders internationally, and is estimated to have sold more than 20 million albums worldwide

He continued to write music, release singles and albums through the 1950s and 1960s, and appeared regularly on BBC radio.

Chacksfield also developed business interests in publishing and in the late 1970s and early 1980s recorded a large number of instrumental recordings for Starborne Productions which were licensed for use by "Easy Listening" radio stations and for companies providing “elevator music”.

This is
a very fine signature in dark blue fountain pen ink on a vintage album page (5.5" x 4.25"). In very good condition.