My dads youngest brothers, twins Micky and Donald, showed quite some promise, and in the late 50's early 60's were likened to a British Everly Brothers. They toured under the name 'The Essex Brothers' and were regular favourites on the Granada Cinema circuit, where they would often play to 1000+ audiences. They even made a record at one point, but I have no idea exactly what or when.
They finished as a duo in the 60's, but both continued to perform as solo acts in pubs and clubs for the rest of their lives... I have a vivid recollection of seeing them perform together at a big family reunion in the early 70's. Sadly, despite being the youngest of the family, they both died relatively early... Donald aged 54, and Micky aged 65.
Now here's the weird bit. I've been half drafting a post on the Everly Brothers for quite some time... an act to whom there is much more than history (or endless regurgitated 'greatest hits' collection) would have you believe. In it I was going to mention the above about my uncles, and in preparation, I recently asked my dad if there were any surviving recordings of them. Unfortunately the answer was no, and nobody even has a copy of the record any more.
Fast forward to the weekend just gone. My dads sister-in-law is currently in the process of moving, having lived in the same house for over 40 years. A venture into the loft to clear it out unearthed.... yes, you guessed it, two 'reel-to-reel' tapes labelled 'Mick + Don'. There's no further information than that, so they could contain anything. They are on the smaller 'CD-sizeish' reels rather than the larger master tape ones, so the likelihood is they contain some home recordings that they made themselves. Nonetheless, for my dad and his remaining siblings, the possibility of being able to hear their brothers sing again is very exciting... although having endured 40 odd summers and winters in a loft, they are also resigned to the fact that perhaps there will be nothing left on the tapes. But whatever the outcome, they are desperate to find out exactly what they do (or don't) contain.
Which leads me to my question... How the hell do I play them??! Even more crucial, how can I get them converted to CD? Any ideas gratefully received!