My Musical Life and Recollections by Jules Prudence Riviere

Jules Prudence Riviere

Jules Prudence Riviere

Title: My Musical Life and Recollections.
Author: Jules Prudence Riviere
Publisher: London: Sampson Low, Marston & Company Limited
Year: 1893

Jules Prudence Riviere
Born in Paris in 1819, Jules Prudence Riviere began his life long musical career as a choir boy in France before going on to establish himself as a phenomenal French composer. In 1857 the French Emperor and Empress presented him with a commemorative signet ring commending his astonishing orchestral performances. The success Riviere experienced in France brought him to England in 1857 where he instantly established a name for himself. With performances at the Adelphi and Alhambra Theatres, Cremorne Gardens and the Covent Garden Promenade Concerts he not only demonstrated his musical talent but charmed and enchanted audiences.

In 1887 Jules Prudence Riviere acted as musical director at Llandudno Pier Pavilion; during this time he pioneered the launch of the seaside promenade concert. After establishing himself in Llandudno, Riviere developed a forty-two piece orchestra who played regularly at the Pier Pavilion and were received as a massive success.

my-musical-life-and-recollections_jules_prudence_riviere_4The lure of the new Victoria Pier in Colwyn Bay proved irresistible and in 1890 Jules Prudence Riviere and his orchestra were secured to perform for the opening season. At the official opening on June 2nd 1890 Riviere orchestrated a phenomenal concert which featured the critically acclaimed Madame Adelina Maria Clorinda Patti.

On moving to Colwyn Bay, Riviere’s took with him the name of his Llandudno Home: Bod Alaw, translating to ‘musical place’. However his residence in the town was sadly short lived as on December 26, 1900 Jules Prudence Riviere passed away, aged 81. He can be found buried at Llandrillo yn Rhos Churchyard.

Subsequent to his death, the street which he had lived for just 7 months was changed to ‘Riviere’s Avenue’ in honour of his contribution to Colwyn Bay. On St. David’s day, 1950, ‘Bod Alaw’ primary school opened to the public in what was Riviere’s home.

This book is twinned with Altogether Elsewhere (2017) by Jazzman John Robert Clarke. Read more about it HERE.



Altogether Elsewhere – ‘Jazzman’ John Robert Clarke

9781910578384_50“…..Altogether elsewhere, vast
Herds of reindeer move across
Miles and miles of golden moss,
Silently and very fast.”
W.H. Auden (c. 1940)

Jazzman John Clarke’s Altogether Elsewhere is a vibrant journey between reality and fantasy. The truths are strong, poignant and positive. The dreams are the shifting sands of sunsets and twilight visions. This chapbook is richly illustrated by Pete Smith who captures London’s dissociative landscapes that are both urban and pastoral, real and unreal.

Poet, writer and performer, John Clarke is a well known name in London’s poetry performance scene. Born of Dublin parentage, he devoted more than two decades of his early career in commercial banking before finding the Muse in the mid to late 1990’s.

Clarke is affectionately known as ‘Jazzman John’ due to his abiding influence from & interest in Jazz, Jazz styles, structures and rhythms. He is well-known for his collaborations with a wide variety of talented musicians & this fact often feeds into & inspires his writing. John has also run a series of ‘alternative’ events throughout London, featuring, mainly, poets, musicians, singer-songwriters & performers. He is known to be good at spotting talents early & indeed the Jazz Combo ‘Ledbib’(shortlisted in the jazz category for the prestigious National Mercury Music Prize in 2009) were given some significant early ‘gigs’ by him.

John has performed in the South of France with a Jazz/Blues/Funk outfit,& more recently in 2009 both in Italy (Genoa & Bologna) with experimental & improv musicians, The International Poetry & Music Festival, Ruigoord, Amsterdam & at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Jazzman John Clarke lives in South East London.


Altogether Elsewhere
‘Jazzman’ John Robert Clarke
Artwork – Pete Jon Smith
Editor – Francesca Albini
Published January 2017
ISBN  9781910578384
A6 Size,
16 printed pages,
Dreamtime Chapbook 2
Limited print run of 400
Price – £2
BUY Altogether Elsewhere (£2 + £1.20 P&P to UK Address)

Francesca Albini – Dreamtime Chapbook Series

Francesca Albini

Francesca Albini

In the past few months we’ve been lucky to sign several new editors here at Sampson Low. They have all embarked upon their very own chapbook series, and these will be stamped with their unique vision and design. Francesca Albini has been publishing with us since December 2015 when she released Dreamtime Reflections into the world. It proved a popular choice and subsequently reached Number 1 in the UK Chapbook Chart. It also inspired the name for Francesca’s new series, Dreamtime Chapbooks.

“Dreamtime, words as maps, maps as distances, rhythm and images, jazz, memories, dreams. And space, empty to fill, full to empty. A series for all the word travellers and the imagery explorers.”
Francesca Albini, 2017

Francesca Albini was born in Venice, Italy in 1959, and has been living in London for over 30 years. Her father was Umberto Albini, professor of Ancient Greek at the University of Genova, Italy, scholar and prolific writer and translator. She has translated fiction and non-fiction books for more than 25 years, from classics, like Anne Bronte, to modern alternative authors, such as Will Self.

9781910578360_garden_Francesca_AlbiniFrancesca’s first chapbook in the Dreamtime series was Garden which is typical of her ethereal and whimsical style. Her second will be Altogether Elsewhere, a collection of poems from Jazzman John Robert Clarke. We think Francesca has a beautiful flavour to her chapbooks and we hope you enjoy reading them over the coming months and years.
Follow the series at Dreamtime Chapbooks.

Debbie Chessell – Confronting Rape Culture chapbooks

Debbie Chesswell

Debbie Chessell

A new editor sealed the deal this week at Sampson Low by imbibing from the famous family teapot. The teapot was given to the second Sampson Low on 7th August 1852 from the Booksellers Trade Association as a slight mark of esteem and respect. Debbie Chessell, a third year fine art student at Kingston University is our new editor and she’ll be launching a chapbook series dedicated to Confronting Rape Culture in the spring of 2017.

The chapbooks will run alongside exhibitions at Housmans’ Bookshop (King’s Cross, London) and The Museum of Futures (Surbiton, 25th March – 2nd April) where up to 25 artists will be showing their work.

As an artist Debbie’s practice explores the physics and abstractions of light through scientific, social and conceptual themes. She works with knitting, crochet and oils, creating installations and paintings that explore concepts which often question one-another, resulting in new and unexpected directions in her research. The use of different mediums is as important as the core theme; each material allows a different way of thinking about the subject. This desire to knit together artistic themes and personalities will undoubtedly create a potent series of chapbooks.

The Two Admirals by James Fenimore Cooper

Title: The Two Admirals. A tale of the sea.
Author: James Fenimore Cooper (September 15, 1789 – September 15, 1851)
Publisher: Sampson Low, Marston & Co Ltd
Year: 1900

the_two_admirals_3c-copyThe Two Admirals is an 1842 nautical fiction novel by James Fenimore Cooper. The novel was written after the Leatherstocking Tales novel The Deerslayer. Set during the 18th century and exploring the British Royal Navy, Cooper had originally intended to write a novel where ships were the main characters, though eventually decided not to. The novel is one of three which Cooper would revise for editions following their first printing, the other two being The Pathfinder and Deerslayer.

When republishing the novel in the 1860s, Cooper’s Daughter, Susan Fenimore Cooper, described the novel as “the least successful of his romances of the sea”. Despite the novel not having a large legacy, critic Steven Harthorn describes the novel as one of Cooper’s deepest studies of masculinity.


James Fenimore Cooper

James Fenimore Cooper (September 15, 1789 – September 15, 1851) was a prolific and popular American writer of the early 19th century.

His historical romances of frontier and Indian life in the early American days created a unique form of American literature. He lived most of his life in Cooperstown, New York, which was founded by his father William on property that he owned. Cooper was a lifelong member of the Episcopal Church and, in his later years, contributed generously to it. He attended Yale University for three years, where he was a member of the Linonian Society, but was expelled for misbehavior.

Before embarking on his career as a writer, he served in the U.S. Navy as a Midshipman, which greatly influenced many of his novels and other writings. The novel that launched his career was The Spy, a tale about counterespionage set during the Revolutionary War and published in 1821. He also wrote numerous sea stories, and his best-known works are five historical novels of the frontier period known as the Leatherstocking Tales. Among naval historians, Cooper’s works on the early U.S. Navy have been well received, but they were sometimes criticized by his contemporaries. Among his most famous works is the Romantic novel The Last of the Mohicans, often regarded as his masterpiece.

Twinned with Poetry WTF?! #2 by Howie Good (2017) – Read more about it here

Poetry WTF?! #2 Presents Howie Good and Dale Wisely


Usually, the titles of films and artworks act as
headlines and meaningful signifiers, secondary to the works themselves. Poetry WTF?! #2 turns all of that on its head as film and artwork titles take centre stage, turned into the building blocks for a startling series of poems.

Howie Good’s eye for the unusual picks out evocative phrases and assembles them into a surreal poetic landscape that reveals our collective anxieties and fears, hopes and dreams. Dale Wisely’s subtle illustrations provide the perfect accompaniment.

Howie Good is professor of journalism at
State University New York and a prolific author.

Dale Wisely is a writer, poet, digital artist, and an epistemological comptroller for a major catastrophe. He edits, and, with Howie Good, prose poetry at

Poetry WTF?! #2 Presents Howie Good and Dale Wisely
Authors – Howie Good & Dale Wisely

Editor – Maartens Lourens
Published January 2017
ISBN  978-1-910578-37-7
A6 Size
16 printed pages
Poetry WTF: Chapbook #2
Limited print run of 100
BUY Poetry WTF?! #2 (£2 + £1.20 P&P to UK Address)

With the Yacht, Camera, and Cycle in the Mediterranean by Frederick Edward Gould LAMBART, 9th Earl of Cavan

Frederick Edward Gould LAMBART, 9th Earl of Cavan

Frederick Edward Gould LAMBART, 9th Earl of Cavan

Title: With the Yacht, Camera, and Cycle in the Mediterranean. (Illustrated in photomezzotype.)
Author: Frederick Edward Gould LAMBART, 9th Earl of Cavan
Publisher: Sampson Low & Co
Year: 1895

yacht_2aFrederick Edward Gould Lambart, 9th Earl of Cavan KP, PC, DL, JP (21 October 1839 – 14 July 1900) styled Viscount Kilcoursie until 1887, was an Irish soldier and Liberal politician. He served as Vice-Chamberlain of the Household in 1886 in William Ewart Gladstone’s third administration.

The eldest son of Frederick Lambart, 8th Earl of Cavan, and his wife, Caroline Augusta Littleton, daughter of Edward Littleton, 1st Baron Hatherton. He was a lieutenant in the Royal Navy and served at the Siege of Sebastopol in 1854/55. He was also at the bombardment of Canton in 1856, and at the attack on Peiho Forts in 1858.

Kilcoursie stood unsuccessfully for parliament for Taunton in February 1882 and for Somerset in February 1884. At the 1885 general election, he was returned for South Somerset, a seat he until he stood down at the 1892 general election. In February 1886 he was sworn of the Privy Council and appointed Vice-Chamberlain of the Household in William Ewart Gladstone’s Liberal Government, which he remained until the administration fell in July of the same year. He succeeded in the earldom on the death of his father in 1887. As this was an Irish peerage it did not entitle him to an automatic seat in the House of Lords and he was allowed to remain in the House of Commons. In 1894 he was invested a Knight of St Patrick. Lord Cavan was also a Justice of the Peace and Deputy Lieutenant for Somerset and a Justice of the Peace for Hertfordshire.


Twinned with Kevin Acott’s travel chapbook series (2017) – Read more about them here