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Memories of James Leach

From an article "Roads out of Manchester" by Edwin Waugh published in the Manchester Times, 2nd July 1881.
... They were all proud of their relative, James Leach, the composer of the "Psalmody"; and I can very well remember that in those days of my early youth, when I accompanied my mother to her native village, and we went from one house to another amongst our kinsfolk, I have often heard them sing and play James Leach's touching melodies, with tears in their eyes. I remember some of these tunes still, and I think I shall never forget them. Though nearly 80 years have passed since his tunes were first published, many of them are still in use; ...

From the letter in response to the article

"James Leach published several sets of original tunes and sacred odes about 1780-90. The melodies are of a very florid character, and the harmonies, though not scientifically accurate, rather elaborate, some of the pieces being written in eight parts. Leach's music was long pre-eminently popular inLanashire and Cheshire. He met his death by a fall from the top of a coach before 1800.".

It then goes on to cite from Manchester Mercury, Tuesday, Feb 13th, 1798: "On Tuesday evening the 6th Feb., 1798, Mr.James Leach of Salford, musician, was killed by the overturning of a chaise caused by a wheel coming suddenly off. He has left a large family to lament his loss."

Read the article and letter HERE


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