Step dancer and musician. Born 1916, died 1990.
Born in Spreyton, Devon, Bob came from a long line of musicians and step dancers. From the 1950s onwards Bob spent much time trying to revive and publicise old Devon traditions and ran music and step dance classes for this purpose and also revived the Devon step dance contests in 1977 at his Traditional Dartmoor Folk Festival. Bob was well-known in EFDSS circles and appeared at many other festivals, notably their annual Albert Hall Festival in 1953. He was awarded their Gold Badge in 1981.
Much work on Bob’s stepping was done in the 1980s by Ann-Marie Hulme and Peter Clifton, who published a series of sets of notes: A-M. Hulme & P. Clifton, Dartmoor Step Dancing, Newcastle: Newcastle Series, (10/85). 1st Rev 11/85, 2nd & 3rd Rev 1986, 4th Rev (with C & A.S.Metherell) 1989.
Further information and steps were published in full following his death in 1990: C. Metherell, “Bob Cann, B.E.M. 1915-1990. Step Dancer”, ED&S, 53, 1, (1991), 13-16. This was republished with minor amendments later the same year: C. & A. Metherell, Devon Step Dancers 1. Bob Cann, Newcastle:Newcastle Series, (1991)
The following films of Bob are available: