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2013 Obit: Dave Bulmer (Age 62)

06 Aug 13 - 03:19 PM (#3546243)
Subject: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: pavane

Seems to be true, in case anyone missed it.

07 Aug 13 - 04:56 AM (#3546457)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: GUEST,Paul Heath.

Seems nobody can think of anything nice to say about him.

07 Aug 13 - 05:46 AM (#3546466)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: GUEST,Iain G

He was a superb Accordionist and I always got on very well with him

My thoughts are with his family

07 Aug 13 - 06:05 AM (#3546471)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: GUEST,Ralphie

Ian G. He might have been a good musician (Never saw him) But as a businessman he wasn't that good. It would be nice to see all the tapes returned to the original artists (Well, the ones who are still alive would be nice) Mind you, How many of the original tapes are still playable?

07 Aug 13 - 07:22 AM (#3546497)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: GUEST,IainG


I'm not going to enter into that debate, it has been going on for a very long time

07 Aug 13 - 07:51 AM (#3546506)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: GUEST,Danny.

I don't think Bulmer will be remembered for his accordian playing, but rather for the damage he did to his fellow musicians, the debate has indeed gone on for a long time, and I suspect will continue to do so untill there is a fair resolution to the situation.

07 Aug 13 - 08:11 AM (#3546509)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: GUEST,kenny

Dave Bulmer used to come to Scotland to play at festivals in the 1970s, and played at Aberdeen Folk club on several occasions with John Doonan. He was one of the few piano-accordion players I ever had any time for, and was a good fiddle player too. I played tunes with him in those days, and enjoyed both his musicianship and company.
My condolences to his family.

07 Aug 13 - 08:23 AM (#3546511)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: The Sandman

I agree with Ralphie.
furthermore, I would not care personally about any money, his relatives have in their possession a recording of the new mexborough concertina quartet,that has been suppressed for more than 20 years.   Dick Miles

07 Aug 13 - 08:30 AM (#3546517)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: Johnny J

Surely we can allow his family and friends a few days to mourn his passing and, by all means, deal with the other matters thereafter?

I knew the man only very superficially having bumped into him at festivals etc over the years. He was an excellent musician and accordion player and pleasant enough to me on the surface. Also, there was a time when he contributed much to the traditional music scene.

Although I had heard and read many unfavourable comments about him over the years, I still treated him as I found him on the infrequent occasions we met.

I would also like to offer my condolences to Dave's family and friends which must be a sad time for them.

07 Aug 13 - 08:31 AM (#3546518)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer
From: Richard Bridge

Well, executors and administrators have a duty to "get in" ie realise the estate so one infers that such rights as Bulmer pay PERSONALLY have had, insofar as not divested by operation of law eg those under contracts of personal confidence, ought to be offered for sale.

The rights vested in COMPANIES however are treated differently. A company exists until it is would up or struck off. But if Bulmer held shares then the shares might be put on the market, and if the companies are liquidated then the rights themselves may be put on the market.

08 Aug 13 - 06:30 PM (#3547080)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Guest

Dyslexic finger.

Does anyone have any details of when the funeral will be and where?

08 Aug 13 - 07:28 PM (#3547094)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Guest

I have twice tried to ask a question of a poster and although the posting was immediately available it has since disappeared.

Why is this?

You were needlessly rude and provocative. You received the answer about the funeral. If you want to be taken seriously, then either join the group or choose a guest moniker and use it consistently so we know who we are talking to. ----mudelf

09 Aug 13 - 03:47 PM (#3547344)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge

I knew Dave Bulmer from when he was a pupil at South Shields High School in th sixties, and helped run the school folk club which often featured the guest(s) who were booked at the nearby Marsden Inn club(the Spinners being one of these groups). I have met him from time to time over the intervening years, and while I would hardly call him a friend, I had no problem on a personal level, and I do recall his longterm music partnership with the great John Doonan, who certainly respected his musicianship. I have been aware for years that aspects of his 'business' found no favour with many people I respect, so presume there is some substance to what I hear....
There are some parallels with Peter Kennedy, whose business behaviour was also doubtful, although he DID record material which would otherwise have been lost- that man surely deserves some credit for that?
Dave was no collector, but had amassed a vast amount of of material in his stores, and whatever motives provoked the allegations made by so many people, this collection is now in one place, and at some stage will, we all hope, become widely available- issue of such items will probably still be a 'business' decision, whoever takes it on. Incidentally, isn't it sad that traditional music has now become no more than a business for so many others, quite apart from the two who are the current object of vilification?
It may be that some time in the future, folk music students will be grateful for the activities of both of these people, so their longterm contribution to the tradition may well be viewed more positively in the future.
At the moment, my thoughts are with his wife Ruth and his family, and I do feel that a little respect is due at this time- arguments about his doubtful business behaviour can surely wait a little while?
someone asked about the funeral- details are....
I am advised by a good friend that the funeral is to be at

Stonefall Crematorium
Wetherby Road
HARROGATE HG3 1DE on 16 August at 3pm
I won't be there, but many will

09 Aug 13 - 06:35 PM (#3547387)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GloriaJ

I will be there,I hope.I knew the details of the funeral but I wasnt sure about revealing them here - anyway, Jim has done that,and yes, the time and venue are correct.I knew Dave very well for a number of years - was in a band with him - although we had not been in contact for a long time. It was a complex relationship,let's say, but I'm sorry I wasnt able to get to see him more recently.No doubt his business approach was sometimes questionable(and he tripped me up a few times) and he could be abrupt and abrasive, and wasnt inclined to flattery. As some of us know, a touring band develops some strange dynamics - closer than a family in some ways, and even more ruthless. Dave's domineering personality frequently led to him being a bit of an outsider but he was probably too robust a character to bother about whether people liked him or not - even in his own band! He often got my back up - maybe because he didnt stoop to flatter my ego, and I often felt we were in conflict. However, I did find out,on more than one occasion, that in my absence, he stood up for me - to the extent of once rolling around swapping fisticuffs on a German pavement.He never told me this - someone else did. He recorded a couple of my albums years ago (never paid me any royalties of course) and tied me down in a contract I soon came to regret.But that's all in the past now, and is of no consequence.We also had some good rumbustuous times.
I hope his wife Ruth, a very nice lady, doesnt have to cope with any abusiveness.I'll miss him anyway, and plenty of others will too.I've been told the funeral is to be a musical celebration.

09 Aug 13 - 06:49 PM (#3547392)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Guest

Thanks Jim for the details and also Gloria for the confirmation.

Hope to be there to pay respects and support Ruth.

10 Aug 13 - 05:53 PM (#3547695)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: Tyke

Well said GloriaJ

Stonefall Crematorium
Wetherby Road
HARROGATE HG3 1DE on 16 August at 3pm

Hope to be there to pay respects and support Ruth.

12 Aug 13 - 03:26 PM (#3548262)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Gerry Brownridge.

I remember Dave from way back in the late '70's when I used to attend an Irish music session at the old Roscoe pub in Sheepscar, Leeds. I was a complete novice at the time, but Dave always had time for me and a pint was always on the table when I walked in and encouragement given when I was trying to learn a few Irish tunes. Turn the clock on 20 odd years and I was doing the "Irish theme pub" circuit. Whenever I was booked at Scruffy Murphy's in Harrogate, Dave would often turn up with his accordion and do the last set with me. He was a great guy, superb musician, and will be sadly missed. My deepest condolences to his wife Ruth and family. God bless.

12 Aug 13 - 06:53 PM (#3548325)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: Tyke

The truth is that I have never met Daves Wife Ruth however everyone that I have spooken too has told me what Lovly person she is now when I meet her for the first time it will be at the Celibration of Dave's life.

13 Aug 13 - 12:55 PM (#3548640)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)

I was a friend of Dave's at Leeds. We did the same course and enjoyed the same music with Tony Wilson, Tom Napper and Bob tracey. All my memories are good. I last saw him at Redcar Festival with Ruth and remember him fondly. He was a fabulous musician and remember him falling over drunk without missing a note on that enormous accordion. I know people have other experiences but this was mine. RIP Dave and best wishes to Ruth

14 Aug 13 - 04:15 AM (#3548845)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: Tyke

Well said GUEST.

14 Aug 13 - 05:15 AM (#3548863)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)

Dave was extremely kind and supportive when my partner and I needed help and advice. Can only comment about our experience and will always be grateful for the help and advice given by Dave and Ruth's hospitality during a difficult period in our life.

25 Aug 13 - 09:25 PM (#3552833)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Melissa Javors

This message is for Ruth, Jamie, and Calllum. I loved your dad because he was such a distinct individualist. He believed in everything he stood for. I received a phone message from one of you boys, but the volume was very low. My phone is not set up to make international calls, but I will try to do this very soon. I'm so very sorry to hear of his passing.-love, Melissa

02 Oct 13 - 06:46 AM (#3563547)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,ex employee

I used to work for Dave, but got fed up with never getting paid on time. He knew a good business deal, but didn't really care for people imo.
Deliberately NOT getting letter back to bank on time, thus an employee misses out on a mortgage - that's the Dave Bulmer I knew!
He was a wonderful accordionist though!!
I feel Ruth will be left to deal with a lot of crap, but nice as Ruth is, she knew Dave! She knew!

20 Oct 13 - 02:48 PM (#3568578)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,exemployee

She knew

22 Oct 13 - 10:06 AM (#3568860)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)

Pete Fawcett. I get around and so did Dave. I would meet him anywhere there was Irish music.He was unconventional. I met him at a Fleadh in Listowel County Kerry.I asked him which Hotel he was staying at. He replied, he wasn't in any, he was sleeping in the car!
I knew Dave Bulmer for 40 years and like others I took him as i found him.I never had a bad word from him or with him. He always made his way to speak to me and was no snob. Which is more than I can say for a few others.

22 Oct 13 - 10:24 AM (#3568869)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: Dave Hanson

Gutless anonymous guest, I'm guessing Bulmer didn't cheat you then ?

Dave H

22 Oct 13 - 10:57 AM (#3568877)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: selby

It interesting that it is now close to 3 months, that Mr Bulmer left this mortal toil. Given the amount of discussions and feeling in lots of quarters, regards his archive of material. There is no statements rumours etc that we know of, to indicate what his heirs may or not do with the material. Is there cause for concern?

22 Oct 13 - 12:15 PM (#3568887)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Peter

My experience is that it takes three to four months just to get a grant of probate. There isn't a lot that the executors can do until then.That's assuming that he actually made a will of course.

28 Oct 13 - 02:57 PM (#3570823)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: GUEST,Gutless

>>Gutless anonymous guest, I'm guessing Bulmer didn't cheat you then ?

Has a message been deleted ... or were you talking to Pete Fawcett, who is pretty well known, and known to be a gentleman?

24 Mar 18 - 01:52 PM (#3912956)
Subject: RE: Obit: The LATE Dave Bulmer (August 2013)
From: Joe Offer

Maybe it would be appropriate to post an obituary. This is from The Living Tradition,

Dave Bulmer – died Aug 2, 2013, aged 62 years

Dave Bulmer came from South Shields, Tyneside and spent much of his adult life in Yorkshire. His interests in folk music go back to the 1960s when he was a pupil at South Shields High School and helped run the school folk club, although he played the accordion since the age of seven. The school club often featured the guests who were booked at the nearby Marsden Inn folk club, so as a teenager he would have seen some of the best musicians around at the time.

His personal development as a musician followed that of the typical folkie, but he probably dug a bit deeper than most. He was among the early group of enthusiasts who travelled to Ireland to attend various Fleadhs and there he met and made friends with some influential musicians.

Dave was at home in a session environment and throughout all his working life he still played regularly in his local pub. He also played for traditional dances, mainly in the North of England and together with John Doonan played in folk clubs throughout the UK. In those early days of interest in Irish music from people in the folk clubs and festivals, Dave was often asked if he had music for the tunes he was playing, as not much was available at that time. Initially he would give people photocopies or handwritten copies of tunes, but soon these were assembled in a simple spiral bound format and published in four volumes under the title Music Of Ireland. These were extremely useful and accessible sources of tunes for many players in Britain and Ireland at a time when you had to hunt out Irish tune books in obscure editions in hard to find outlets. They were a labour of love which made it possible for many to share the ‘latest tunes’ in sessions far and wide. Now that we have professionally produced books, easily available at the click of a mouse, it is easy to overlook this pioneering work which helped open up the music to a wider playing audience.

Dave ‘distributed’ these books as he travelled and was reaching an audience newly interested in traditional music. At that time there was little in the way of formal ‘distribution’ for folk music. Concurrently, Bill Leader was enthusiastically recording traditional musicians, particularly with his ‘grey label’ Leader series, but had few options to reach that specialist audience. He asked Dave if he would also take around some of his LPs on his travels. Dave then effectively became the first distributor for Leader / Trailer and this would lead later to him establishing C M Distribution. The music business at that time was very much London focussed. Dave believed strongly that the ‘centre of gravity’ of folk music was in the north and that the business side should also be in the hands of musicians rather than business people in the wider music industry. His success in distribution brought competitors and Dave’s passion probably contributed to his view that it was ‘him against the rest’. His business methods have been the subject of controversy, much of it ill informed, some probably justified. He did it ‘his way’, but to be fair to him, he did it.

His passion showed again when he bought the rights to the Leader / Trailer catalogue from the liquidator after the label Bill Leader created, with similar passion, had gone bust. Going bust has been the story of most small record labels, but the prominence of Leader / Trailer in the folk world, a big fish in a small pond, attracted criticism from others who took a different view of the material to Dave Bulmer. The label was close to Dave’s heart, not necessarily for the ‘folk stars’ who were on the label, but rather for the recordings of people like Martin Byrnes and other ‘masters of Irish Music’ who were very much in Dave’s blood. Dave saw himself as the saviour of those more obscure releases, material that might have been lost if the label had been cherry picked by more commercial operators. Some others saw the situation differently and much has been said about Dave over the years - you will not need to look too far to find criticism of some of his business dealings.

But it would be unfair to focus only on Dave’s detractors and we shouldn’t underestimate those who had no direct issues with him. While he could be at times abrupt and abrasive, he would often stand up for the people and things he believed in – music being one of the most paramount for him. He didn’t attempt to flatter anyone’s ego. He said things bluntly, as he saw them, and in response to, “Why hasn’t my album sold lots of copies, surely it must be down to your lack of promotion?” he is likely to have answered, “Maybe it isn’t as good as you think it is.”

Many people respected his musicianship and enjoyed his company. He mixed with the main players of the music business, taking folk music to international trade fairs such as MIDEM. Although he moved easily in business circles, he was probably one of the few record company executives who were actively playing music. Ronnie Simpson from Lismor Records who knew him at that time said: “He was not always the most popular folkie at the festival, but he was passionate and knew his stuff and fought for the rights in folk music. He would wear his usual denims, sweater etc. and carry his box around too for any impromptu sessions. He is a very difficult man to debate or discuss. I do believe he had the music at heart but equally he thought that ‘he was that heart and his way was the right and only way.’”

My reading of the situation is that Dave dug in his heels in the face of attack and continued to do what he genuinely believed was the right thing. If you look through any LP collection of folk music, you may be surprised at how many of these were distributed by C M Distribution. He did a job that was needed at the time.

Dave Bulmer was in many ways a modest man. He had experience of the star driven commercial music scene, but his interest was in community music making and he didn’t see publicity and hype as being necessarily in the interests of the tradition.

On a musical note, the first release on the Celtic Music label was of a group called Iona. You had to read deep into the sleeve notes to discover that the band’s members were Dave Bulmer, George Ormiston, Tony Wilson and Gordon Tyrrell. He didn’t hype the release and I suspect not many people have a copy. Publicity wasn’t his style; his first love was the music.

It probably isn’t widely known that Dave Bulmer also acquired the rights to material from a number of small record labels who had recorded other aspects of British culture including various recordings of Brass Bands. Dave wasn’t a collector in the sense of a Cecil Sharp or a Peter Kennedy, but he had amassed a vast amount of material in his stores. Whatever his motives, this collection does include material which might otherwise have been lost. Let us hope that at some stage in the future it will become widely available and that future generations will be able to listen to it and be grateful for the contribution Dave has made.

Our thoughts are with his wife Ruth and his family.

Pete Heywood

25 Jul 18 - 12:54 PM (#3939410)
Subject: RE: 2013 Obit: Dave Bulmer (Age 62)
From: GUEST,Steve

Any recent news on the Bulmer situation

25 Jul 18 - 01:40 PM (#3939426)
Subject: RE: 2013 Obit: Dave Bulmer (Age 62)

I believe he is still dead.

26 Jul 18 - 05:09 AM (#3939549)
Subject: RE: 2013 Obit: Dave Bulmer (Age 62)
From: GUEST,Peter

In that case, any news of the situation regarding the estate of the late David Bulmer?