In early 2020, I composed a piece for Kompass Ensemble and their Insekten series of concerts - the piece had to be less than a minute long, and arranged for any of piano, violin, and a selection of tuned & untuned percussion. I chose to write for piano, violin and crotales.
Although not written as a piece for What Happened to Seaton Snook?, I was drawn to the image of the sun rising over Canch End (another name for Seaton Snook), and I used some Snookish characteristics in the music, such as the NSP drone in the piano LH, the major seventh leaps, and sections of the Lenten Tempo (the piece was written in the spring of 2020). I felt no need to try and shoehorn the piece into the Seaton Snook narrative, and so it is not included in the Archive.
In late 2020, I created a piece for Sound Thought festival in Glasgow. The call for submissions specified the piece be related to "Dawn" or "New Beginnings" or similar. My first thought was to adapt Canch End Dawn into something more substantial. The title Canch End Morning Radio was an immediate thought and felt perfect.
The sounds in the background include, amongst other things, synthesiser renditions of the individual parts of Canch End Dawn, considerably time-stretched. The title of the piece told me that there was a morning radio show broadcast from Seaton Snook, possibly from the cocklewomen's shack with the tall mast behind it.
Research into the history of radio in the UK revealed problems with equipment leading to the North East becoming a bit of a black (or at least brown) spot for commercial radio after the BBC abandoned its local radio stations in favour of regional broadcasts in the 1920s. Although pirate radio does not seem to have been widespread until the 1960s, there is no reason why the ingenious people of Seaton Snook, used to having to take matters into their own hands, could not have started their own radio service. In the early 1960s, the BBC made moves once again towards local radio broadcasting, following a report coincidentally named the Pilkington Report.
The narration of Canch End Morning Radio, therefore, is made up of fragments of an interview with someone involved with the station talking about their work. This may well have been Robson Booth, as he had a background in the RAF Signals Corps, and was known to create tape pieces and pieces for radio. However, I am not certain who the voice is. If I am to integrate this piece into the Archive, I need to have at least some idea of why the piece contains late 20th century sounds by someone familiar with Snookish NSP writing conventions; why only fragments of this interview have been used; who could have recorded it; how it might have ended up in my hands. The voice on the recording is also very close to that of the Archivist. Until I discover more about the piece, it will remain in the background.
I am, however, certain that Seaton Snook had a morning radio broadcast. I just need to work out how to uncover it.