Crowdfunded book to tell the history of Acland Street ?

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Prize winning historian Dr Judith Buckrich has been successful in her appeal to music fans, locals and the general public to support the crowd funding campaign for her history of Acland Street.

Backed by 124 supporters, the Pozible campaign raised more than $20,000.

3000 copies will be printed and supporters who donated $50 to the campaign will receive a copy. The rest of us will be able to buy it from the bookstores.

The book is being published by ATOM, a non-profit organisation whose editor is affiliated with the St Kilda Historical Society.

“Acland Street has been a subversive presence in the music scene from the 1930s when jazz musicians jammed late nights at the Galleon. In the mid-fifties when conservatism otherwise reigned, German impresario, Horst Liepolt set up Jazz Centre 44, one of Australia’s most innovative jazz clubs,” Dr Buckrich said.

“Liepolt paid £5 a week to rent the upstairs space at Katarina’s Café, the quaint building on the corner of the Esplanade, now McDonald’s. On Sunday afternoons, Jazz Centre 44 featured many important musicians of the time such as Stewie Speer, Brian Brown, Alan Lee, and The Melbourne New Orleans Jazz Band.”

Less than a 100 metres away were the Telefil Recording Studios set up in 1954 at St Kilda Memorial Hall (now Memo Hall)? by pioneering music producer, Bill Armstrong. As a youngster, Bill had hung around the Galleon Café and other music haunts to listen to jazz. In 1956, he was part of the recording team for the Melbourne Olympics. At Telefil he and his team, which included a band, recorded jingles and segments for TV shows like Sunnyside Up and the Go Show.

“From 1956-60 Bill was the manager of a newly founded independent label,?W&G Records, which discovered and signed The Seekers.?It was at the Telefil studios that Normie Rowe recorded his 1965 hit,?It Ain’t Necessarily So,?from the American musical?Porgy and Bess.?In 1965 Bill left Acland Street to establish studios in South Melbourne which continue to this day,” Dr Buckrich said.

Live music also continues to be played in Acland Street at Memo Hall, the Vineyard and other venues.

Acland Street was St Kilda’s first named street, taking its name from Thomas Dyke Acland, the owner of the schooner?Lady of St Kilda?which gave its name to the suburb.

Dr Buckrich?is close to completing her manuscript on the history of Acland Street, St Kilda 1842-2017. Her work on this massive project began in late 2015 and will be published in November 2017. The resulting book will be a superb hard-cover illustrated history of the street covering its many phases since it was first named in 1842.

“There’s hardly a Melburnian who hasn’t been to Acland. It has a special place in this city’s heart – and its collective memory,” she said.

Dr Buckrich?who has made her living from writing plays and histories, was born in Hungary in 1950 of a communist father and Jewish mother?and migrated to Melbourne in 1958. She explores her experiences in her recently published memoir,?The Political is Personal.

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