Wirri Band

From Australian Traditional Music People
Jump to navigationJump to search

The following biog was provide by Rob Willis:

The Wiriri Band (pronounced Wyriri)

In the late 1940’s Cecil and Daphne Taylor bought a property in Wiriri and settled there to farm with some dairy cattle, sending their cream to Grafton 80 kilometres away. Cec’s brother Vic and his wife Betty moved to Wiriri shortly after, at first living in a second cottage on the property and later purchasing the neighboring property where Vic built his own house in 1964. Between beef cattle, early dairying and timber milling the brothers teamed up with friend Harry Venn to form a dance band.

Cecil played violin and piano, Vic played violin, button accordion and piano accordion, his wife Betty played guitar and Harry Venn provided the vocals. Weekly Saturday night dances were held regularly at Billys Creek, Tyringham and Bostobrick, all three villages boasting sawmills and either a school house or community hall. One of the Taylor offspring quipped: “We were pleased when the weekends were over– out till late Saturday night at a dance and out to tennis all day Sunday”. The Taylors were renowned for their tennis prowess, having inherited a tennis court when the original Wiriri property was purchased. Not content with playing someone else’s music, the Taylors are credited with at least two original compositions “Jacaranda Bloom” and “Wiriri Polka”. Both of which are remembered by old hands living today in the Dorrigo district. The brothers were the sons of Tom Taylor of Ebor, and between them produced 10 children, several of whom still live on the Dorrigo Plateau and nearby. Cecil died while still resident at Wiriri in 1979, Vic’s wife Betty died about 1964 just prior to the family moving into their own new house and farm, Vic survived until 2000, and Harry Venn some little time later. A copy of dance music exists on cassette and there are one or two copies of a 45 rpm, copied from the original recording of “Jacaranda Bloom” and “Wiriri Polka”.

Information provided by Louise Stanton of Dorrigo 2014. Recordings by Reg Gibbs

Rob Willis Collection, NLA

Additional Information

Additional information may be available on the following people or organisations associated with this Band:
| Cec Taylor | Harry Venn | Rob Willis Collection |