Countdown to Christmas – Day 8

adams_star_of_bethlehem_jul0920A recording courtesy of the Norwegian Institute of Recorded Sound’s 2009 Advent Calendar. The Star of Bethlehem by Stephen Adams was hugely popular in the early twentieth century. www.recordedsound.no/lyd/index.htm?filid=109

Less well known is Stephen Adams’ connection with a notorious murder case – the Maybrick poisoning. Adams was the brother of the victim, James, who was also a suspect in the Jack the Ripper murders. An unexpectedly ghoulish connection for a composer, who was best loved for his religious songs. Adams’ lyricist, Fred E. Weatherley is probably best known for his lyrics, Danny Boy, and for the wartime classic Roses of Picardy.

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About mj263

Music Collections Supervisor at Cambridge University Library. Wide musical interests. Often to be found stuck in a composer's archive, or enthusing about antiquarian music.
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