A colleague gave me not one but two unwanted melodicas today. This was somewhat unexpected but I’m thrilled with my new objects. They produce a gorgeous sound, haunting and mightily melancholic and are really quite weighty and, certainly, beautifully made. The Cole children are already generating pleasing tunes on these instruments. Naturally my mind turns to the master of the melodica, Augustus Pablo, who used the handheld woodwind item to stunning effect on such seminal reggae albums as King Tubby Meets Rockers Uptown. There’s a lovely clip of the late great maestro here.
Photograph: The middle Cole child cranks up the volume.