Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Ice cream music

Tonight the local ice cream van came down the road, I'm not sure how good their business is...most of us have freezers but I do love hearing its chimes. I have an awful thing to admit though...I am one of those Mothers who used to tell their child that if you can hear the music then the van has run out of ice cream....the shame of it ! We can all have ice cream in the freezer but you can't beat a '99'
Charles II started the rage for Ice cream in this country but the hey day of the van was in the 1950's. The earliest vans had a hand bell but the motorised vans could use the vans electrical system to power a type of Swiss musical box. It was designed by Ray Harris and Bob Vickers for the Toni Bell Organisation in 1954. The traditional loudspeaker a ' Grampion horn' was pointed down to the road so that the sound would surround the van evenly. Favourite tunes were and still are 'Greensleeves', 'Teddy Bears picnic ' and our local one ' The merry widow '. If you click on the following link there are a selection of tunes to hear-

The 'mobilers' as the ice cream people call them can now play all sorts of tunes, with crystal clear clarity all on a chip...as long as the tune is out of copyright. One manufacturer is having talks with a record producer so who knows what the future holds !
The following link is to an ice cream van orchestra ...

In Belfast the police while trying to stop a crowd of teenagers decided to broadcast ice cream music through their tannoys ! Apparently the teenagers stopped throwing and began laughing...

No photos today ,I didn't get out fast enough with my camera but if you are into old time music you might like to listen to the following link...Flory FForde singing 'Oh, Oh Antonio ' kindly shared by Gramaphoneshane.

In quaint native dress an Italian maid
Was seeping distress as the streets she strayed
Searching in every part for her bold sweetheart
And his ice-cream cart
Her English was bad It cannot be denied
And so to herself In Italian she cried
Oh! Oh!  Antonio, he's gone away Left me alone-ee-o,
 all on my own-ee-o
I want to meet him with his new sweetheart
Then up will go Antonio and his ice-cream cart
Oh! Oh! Antonio, he's gone away Left me alone-ee-o,
all on my own-ee-o
I want to meet him with his new sweetheart
Then up will go Antonio and his ice-cream cart

Oh Francis Rossi fro Status Quo isfrom an old Ice Cream Family...perhaps their song  ' Whatever you want ' is actualy about ice cream !

  ice cream van
Picture from Zacek Perri-Corgi photos

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