Henry Metcalfe - Composer and publisher?


Staff member
Query from Norman Field - jazz@normanfield.com

I am researching my great great grandfather Henry James Metcalfe, who was active in brass bands, composing & publishing in Wolverhampton for about 30 years until his death in 1906. He also ran a journal for at least 16 years, and printed that and his own music in his own house; which I guess must have been fairly normal for the time. But, as he was only one of many hundreds of people doing that sort of thing at the time, he has naturally become incredibly obscure after 100 years.

He actually did get listed in the back of Algernon Rose's 'Talks With Bandsmen' (~1895?), but that is the sole mention of him I've ever found 'in lit.', as they say. The Brass Band Archive in Wigan was very helpful, though they had not actually heard of a Metcalfe in Wolverhampton.

There is a simple chronology of Metcalfe's life at: http://www.normanfield.com/metcalfe.htm. Any information would be welcome.


New Member
Just to say 'thank you very much' for posting that query, Gavin. Within a couple of days I got a reply from another descendant of H J Metcalfe, that led us to a number of copies (1885 - 1888) of 'Metcalfe's Musical Express' in the British Library (Newpspapers) at Colindale. Thus, much extra data has been added to his web-page!

By way of thanks I will send in some more dates for your 78 rpm listing over the next few days.


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