|Photo by Joel Sternfeld|
From Ghosts, among the very finest albums from Strawbs comes the single "Grace Darling". Having a children's choir perform on a rock song had been done ( The Rolling Stones's "You Can't Always Get What You Want") and it would be done again ( Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall"). But this is a special track from "the British Byrds".
It was recorded in the chapel of the Charterhouse School, where, a decade earlier, the members of Genesis were students. The school's organist actually played on the tune because the band's keyboardist, John Hawken, couldn't adapt to the delay between pressing the keyboards and hearing the sounds.
There really was a Grace Darling. She was a lighthouse keeper's daughter who helped rescue the survivors of a shipwrecked paddlesteamer.