Willy and Roy

Featured in

  • Published 20090303
  • ISBN: 9780733323942
  • Extent: 256 pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm)

ROY PRESTON LOVED loved the smell. When the amplifier’s valves warmed up: their filaments glowing orange, they gave off a sweet musty odour. He opened the cabinet doors just to inhale it. Who’d have thought gramophones could be so seductive. Roy smiled and swung the weighty arm of the Royce Senior Traverser into place across the turntable. It had its own smell, too – light machine oil and heavy steel. What a contraption! Manufactured in Melbourne, it was worth every penny of the £100 he had paid for it. Twenty times his weekly wage – but he’d made hundreds of recordings. Not just theatre organs and jazz, but the classics, which he was increasingly coming to like.

Roy placed a fresh black acetate disc on the turntable. The right stylus with the right worm drive could engrave half an hour of music on its gleaming surface. He selected a heavy steel scroll the thickness of a broom handle and fitted it. It looked like an industrial machine – not out of place amid the wreckage he’d seen in New Guinea less than a decade ago – but the Traverser’s teal parkerised paint shouted modern.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

If you are an educator or student wishing to access content for study purposes please contact us at griffithreview@griffith.edu.au

Share article

More from author

A culinary adventure

EssayIn a Sydney restaurant in 1978, what was called a "maritime" salad exploded my notion of Australian restaurant fare. Strips of abalone, smoked trout,...

More from this edition

I had written him a letter

EssayIF YOU'RE LOOKING for an example of how a classic literary text can speak to the present, you could hardly do better than Clancy of...

The unexpected idea

ReportageON A WINTER'S day in 1869, Russian scientist Dmitri Mendeleev sat at his desk trying to write a textbook on chemistry. Almost from the...

Bee Gees to Boat People

Essay'WHAT IS IT about music education in Queensland?' This question is often asked when Australian music educators gather. Everyone seems to come from Queensland...

Stay up to date with the latest, news, articles and special offers from Griffith Review.