Riding The Red Rattler

A few interesting finds added to the Aussie Models timeline. (Weston Langford Photograph) When I was a lad riding the rails the train of choice was the Red Rattler. If a Bluey pulled in I would sometimes wait for the next one in hope of riding the Red. The Tait class of train was far … Continue reading Riding The Red Rattler

By Dickens

Will the real Sydney Dickens please stand up? There has been some confusion on the identity of Sydney Dickens or should I say Professor Dickens. On Melbourne's Empire Records back in 1908, two wax cylinder recordings were pressed containing mouth organ medleys credited to 'Professor' Dickens (these are Australia's earliest known mouth organ recordings). For … Continue reading By Dickens

M-M-M-My Harola

Gidday Riff Raffers, Ooh, my little pretty one, my pretty one. My my my aye-aye whoa! Quite awhile back I discovered advertising for this unusually named harmonica, the Harola. I endeavoured to locate its origins and to see if it was actually unique to the Australian market. My initial attempts failed dismally and it would … Continue reading M-M-M-My Harola

Bosker! Bonzer! Boshter!

G'Day Raffers, First rate mouth organs for sixpenny were sold in Australia as early as 1904 by Allan & Co under the Australian slang terms for first-rate, Boshter and Bonzer. (With permission City of Sydney Archives) In 1908 Chapman's of 634 George Street Sydney sold the Bosker in two models the Vamper for 1/6 and … Continue reading Bosker! Bonzer! Boshter!

Kangaroo Hop (The Swiss Connection)

G'Day Riff Raffers, It's an Australian hop, the Kangaroo hop, but it's also the German hop. Earlier this year I found The Kangaroo mouth organ in of all places Riga, Latvia. I had believed in the beginning that this was manufactured by Seydel for Albert's here down under. In Ray Grieve's magnificent resource book Boomerangs … Continue reading Kangaroo Hop (The Swiss Connection)

The Bells, The Bells.

Hey there Riff Raffers, A look at an Aussie harp from yesteryear, a couple of record reviews and a few bibs and bobs. Don't forget to visit Harmonica Riff Raff Soundcloud and YouTube for more treats. In 1909 in Australia Albert's was selling a unique Boomerang mouth organ with a double cup set of bells … Continue reading The Bells, The Bells.

Chromatically Chromonica Chronologically

Hi Riff Raffers, A new, very old harp housed in its original box now resides in my humble collection. Mark Weber has meticulously investigated and reviewed technical aspects of the harp at chromhistory. What follows is an account of my pursuance from world experts on how, when and where this Hohner harp, 'The Up To … Continue reading Chromatically Chromonica Chronologically