A 92-year-old trumpet player from Northwood has just reached number one in the charts – for the second time inside a year.
Morris Miller published his musical memoirs, Me and My Trumpet, last year to critical acclaim and a top spot on Amazon’s autobiography charts.
And now he has followed up with volume II, A Conversation with the Past: Portrait of a Family, telling the story of his Jewish upbringing and the family and friends who influenced him.
For decades Morris was one of the most in-demand trumpeters, with bands and orchestras across the country, but away from the stage and bandstand he remained extremely proud of his heritage.
In A Conversation with the Past, Morris brings to life the people who were important during his early years and throughout his career.
He said: “A Conversation with the Past has allowed me to tell their stories in their own personal way.
“This has only been possible because they left behind a wealth of written material which I have collected, collated and translated from Mahmeh loshen (mother tongue) – in a word, Yiddish.
“This memoir is all about family, its troubles and joys, and ultimate achievements in the face of adversity and misfortune.”
Morris’s formative years were spent in Canada before moving to England to pursue a career in music at the age of 20.
Throughout the 1950s, 60s and 70s, he would play with some of the best-known bands and orchestras in the country.
Among the highlights for Morris were his times with Ted Heath’s big band and the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra in Manchester.
Since retiring from the bandstand, Morris has written several short stories and even put his proud ethnic roots to use between 2013 and 2016 by translating important documents from Yiddish into English for the Jewish Heritage Centre archives in Winnipeg.
But it is some translating, transcribing and encouraging from his daughter that has helped him to publish his latest number one book.
Morris, who lives in Northwood with his wife Peggy, explained: “My daughter Anna converted all of my longhand writing into a printable reading format, as well as exploring and implementing ideas on the layout. Anna also provided the corrections.”
For more details, visit Amazon and search for Morris Miller, where the paperback and Kindle formats of A Conversation with the Past: Portrait of a Family are both available.