Trader Horne

Morning Way

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Legendarily named after DJ John Peel's nickname for his nanny, the duo Trader Horne were one of those wonderful, short-lived footnotes of musical history with which the late-'60s British scene so abounds. In the name game, singer Judy Dyble edged out singer/multi-instrumentalist Jackie McAuley -- he found fame with Them, she flitted through Fairport Convention, Giles, Giles & Fripp, and King Crimson, and guested on an Incredible String Band album. In 1969, the two paired up, signed to the Pye label's newly launched prog imprint Dawn, and released their first and last album Morning Way. Themed around the transformation from childhood to adulthood, Morning is awash in whimsy, and gentle folk that puddles around pop and occasionally melts into blues or R&B. The entire album has a lovely, lilting quality, a child-like sweetness, innocence, and wonder, even though many of the lyrics explore teen-age angst. It's far removed from anything else on the scene, then or now, and reminds us how cruelly Dyble's vocals were overshadowed in Fairport history by Sandy Denny. Denny, of course, overshadows most everyone, but Dyble is delightful regardless. Her partnership with McAuley proved brief, but this album, and the "Here Comes the Rain" single from 1970, shows it was very, very fruitful one.

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