Interesting film which presents popular songs through printed words and camera tricks.
Title reads: "Eve presents another novelty - "Words and music by - " No. 2." Introductory intertitle: "Songs echo round the world - yet our most popular melody masters remain almost unknown to us. Remember these old favourites?" Written across the screen with musical notes either side are the following song names: "All the nice girls love a Sailor!" "Fall in and follow me!" "I wonder if you miss me sometimes!" "Take me back to dear old Blighty" "By the side of the Zuyder Zee". Following the intertitle: "An unconventional meeting with their Composer, Mr Bennett Scott, busy in his garden - " we see a man pushing a wheelbarrow of plants towards us. We see Mr Scott in his garden playing golf with his little daughter. "Quite a change from this - " C/U of the hands of the composer playing the piano. M/S of the composer playing as the words of the song "By the side of the Zuyder Zee" appear beside him.
"And stand by for those other melody makers - Flotsam and Jetsan." (sic) Flotsam and Jetsam sing a song, one playing the piano. They seem to be in a radio studio as this shot dissolves into a shot of people wearing radio earphones. C/U of one of the two singing - the words: "I sing all the LOW NOTES" appear, the other sings and the words: "You'd wonder how he gets 'em?" L/S of the two at the piano by a camera trick a ghostly figure of a young girl appears sitting on the piano. C/U of the young girl as she turns to look at the pianist. Dissolve to extreme C/U of one of the eyes of one of the singers. Line of music with the words: "When I look in-to your eyes, Maud Mar-ie, -" appears, followed by extreme C/U of the little girls' eyes. Dissolve into eyes of Flotsam or Jetsan/Jetsam. M/S of the three. Flotsam (?) taps the girl on the shoulder to get her attention. She touches him under the chin, then disappears again. Hal Swain plays some tuneful melodies. C/U of the composer's hand as he is about to write some lines of music. On the table is the sheet music for: "My Irish Home Sweet Home", and "Show Me the Way to Go Home." He taps his fingers on the sheet music paper. Dissolve to C/U of composer deep in thought. L/S of him at his desk.
By a camera trick a ghostly violinist appears above the table, playing the tune he has in his head presumably. Another shot of the composer as ghostly musicians appear - saxophonist, trumpet, trombone and banjo players. L/S of six men playing saxophones of varying sizes.
Through optical printing or multiple exposure they multiply and move around the stage. Shot of band on the stage, pianist in the foreground. "And, permit us - Horatio Nicholls - whose songs are played and sung the whole world over." Various sheet music pamphlets rotate for the camera - including "Shepherd of the Hills", "Babette", "Souvenirs" and "Persian Rosebud." The music rotates madly. C/U of the composer playing the piano. C/U of him jotting notes down on sheet music. The song title is "Janette." He plays then cut to the finished sheet music of Janette. Dissolve into a couple dancing to the tune. Twirls and spins.
Was originally an item in Eve's Film Review issue number 356.
Note: historically very interesting film - attempting to get across musical themes through the medium of silent film. Pretty difficult for the cinema pianist I would have thought. Also interesting from the point of view of the tricksy shots, nice arty stuff. Obviously a lot of effort went into this one!
Safety print exists.