Australia’s top batsman at the British Library Sound Archive

Blogpost taken from the British Library’s Sound Recordings Blog

Richard Ranft, Head of Sound and Vision at the British Library, writes:

Legendary cricketer Sir Donald “the Don” Bradman (1908-2001), who was once named the “greatest living Australian” by former Prime Minister John Howard, and acclaimed by Wisden as the 20th century’s greatest cricketer, here shows off another cricket record. But not on the pitch – on the keyboards.

A skilled piano player who grew up in a musical household, he was a boy soprano in his school choir, composed music and made several records (his grand-daughter Greta inherited The Don’s love and talent for music and is one of South Australia’s pre-eminent classical singers).

Here the Don plays solo “Old Fashioned Locket” and “Our Bungalow of Dreams” on a 78 rpm shellac disc, Colombia DB270, recorded in England in the Colombia Record studios during the 1930 cricket tour to England:

The A-side of the disc, labelled “How it’s done – a friendly chat”, features Bradman discussing cricket, including differences between Australian and English cricket:

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