Ragtime Section

This genre enjoyed its peak popularity between 1895 and 1918. Its cardinal trait is syncopated rhythms where the main pulse is shifted in unexpected places. There are about 30 pieces here with a wide variety of composers.

Sub-categories

African Ripples

African Ripples is Thomas 'Fats' Waller's response to the Irving Berlin composition with the same kind of 'ripples' in the title. I really like this piece and the arrangement works well. The SSA lines are not for the faint of heart. 

Scored for SSATTBGbCb recorders this is truely a Recorder Orchestra show piece.

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Ballin' The Jack

'Ballin' The Jack' is a very popular foxtrot of the ragtime era. It was reworked for the Broadway stage and Hollywood Movies. It is set rather robustly for SnSATTBGb recorders.

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Bantam Step

'Bantam Step' refers to the proud way that chickens prance around the farm yard. The melody and harmony of the rag is very different which makes me like it a lot. It has been arranged for SATBCb recorders giving a nice lower recorder sound.

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Bethena

Scott Joplin composed 'Bethena, A Concert Waltz' in an effort to bring ragtime into the 'concert' hall. It is set here for Sopranino, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass, & GreatBass. This number of voice does the more complex rhythms and harmonies some justice.
 

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Campin' On De Ole Suwanee

This ragtime Piece by Lee Orean Smith has a secondary title of "Characteristic Marh, Two-Step, Polka or Cakewalk'. Open a lot of ideas for performance. 

Scored for SATBGbCb this could be another for a recorder Orchestra.

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Chatter Box Rag

George Botsford composed 'Chatterbox Rag" in about 1911. This is a very nice ragtime piece not very much heard. It is scored for SATBGb.

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Cleanin' Up in Georgea

"Cleanin' Up in Georgie" (sounds like BIG job) is a 'Cakewalk'. Have you ever walked in a 'cakewalk' fundraiser? Their pretty rare in the 21st century but in the 19th century before the advent of the 'cake mix' this was very common. You buy a ticket and walk in a circle which has numbers drawn on it. During the 'Walk' it was customary to show off your skills at 'fancy dancing'. A number is drawn from a container and the winner get to keep the cake.

The SATBCb arrangement works well to convey the 'Fancy Dance' Feel.  

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Country Club

'Country Club' is one of Scott Joplins lesser known ragtime two steps. It is a good one (can't imagine saying anythiing else). Because I have this hidden love affair with the low range recorders 'Country Club' is set for SATBGbCb ensemble.

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Cruel Papa

"Cruel Papa" was composed by Will Marion Cook of 'Clorindy Overture' fame. The composer went on to become a major force in the development of jazz and African American music in general. Many famous musicians will find Will Marion Cook in their eduational tree.

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Dat Lovin' Rag

This is a great ragtime two-step with a challenging momments in the alto line with all other part still interesting. 

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Dixie Girl

'Dixie Girl' was classified by the composer, J. Bodewalt Lampe, as a 'Characteristic March and Two Step'. The meaning of 'Characteristic March' seems to be lost to hishory. It is perhaps a pattern of steps which were 'characteristic' of the south (just guessing).

This SATBGbCb arrangement begins in the lower voices then adds the upper voices in the next section. It's a Goood One.

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Dusty Rag

"Dust Rag" was composed by the best known female ragtime composer of the time, May Francis Aufderhyde. She was very active in the Indianapolis, Indiana ragtime community. This is arranged for recorder orchestrak, SnSSAATTBBGbCb.

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Easy Winners

'Easy Winners' was written by Scott Joplin sometime before 1901. The title refers to winners in sports events. One of his most popular works, it was one of the four that had been recorder by 1940. I have used SnSATBGb recorders to express the energy of this wonderful piece.

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I Got the Blues

Anthony Maggio's "I Got the Blues" is sub-titles 'Characteristic Ragtime Two-Step'. Wikipedia called this "The first publication of blues sheet music was in 1908: Antonio Maggio's "I Got the Blues" is the first published song to use the word blues."  

It is easy to hear some of the introduction of accidentals in the melody as a 'blues' influence. Anyhow.... it works out well in this ATBGbCb recorde setting. I would like to try sometime doubling the alto with a sopranino, the tenor with a soprano, and the bass with an alto. It might be nice especially on the repeats.

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Levee Revels

The secondary title of "Levee Revels" is 'An African Cane Hop' ( if I remember correctly and I may not ). I looked up the meaning of 'Cane Hop' and found nothing. This is a very accessable bit of ragtime and feels like an early cake-walk. 

It is Scored for SATB recorders and well worth a listen.

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On Easy Street

This Ragtime Two-Step was composed by J. Regenald MacEacherton. He is not well known but the little rag is really quite nice. It is scored for ATBGbCb recorders. Give it a listen.

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Overture to 'Clorindy'

'Clorindy' is a 1898 Broadway musical. With this productioin Will Marion Cook became the first Africian American Composer to have a production on 'the great white way'. He also conducted the all white orchestra which was yet another first. This musical has a definite cakewalk ragtime influence. The origional orchestration has been reduced to SATTTBBGbCb. 

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Panama Rag

Panama Rag was composed by Cy Seymour and might better be called a March since it bears the temo marking of 'Marcia'. The melody has this hesatation thing going on that I find appealing.

Scored for SATGb Recorders this peice marches right along.

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Peacherine Rag

Peacherine Rag is a lesser known Joplin composition. I have set this energetic example with SnSATBGbCb recorders. 

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Peaches and Cream

Composed by Percy Wenrich the cover has a girl and the main point of interest. Obviouly we know what 'Peaches and Cream' mean. It even has a secondary title of 'A Delectable Rag' just so we get the point.

Scored for ATBCb there is a lot of lower rhythm going on. The accompanying image of Percy.

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Pleasant Moments

"Pleasant Moments' is another great Scott Joplin ragtime tune.  I scored this for 8 foot recorders (Alto, Tenor, Bass and ContraBass). But is would sound fine in Sopranino, Soprano, Alto, and Bass recorders or better yet both of these quartets together would make a great sound.

Enjoy

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Rabbit's Foot

'Rabbit's Foot was composed in England but managed to make it's way to the U.S.A. by way of dance bands of the ragtime age. ATTBGb recorders seem to give the best interpretation of the fun and integetic nature of this fox trot.

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Red Peppers

'Red Peppers Rag' came out of a collection of ragtime pieces in pdf form. There were images of original published works. I have been able too discover nothing about the composer, Imogene Giles. A female ragtime composer is a rare thing but have something published indicated that she must have been well respected.

This is an instrumental rag scored for SABBCb and begins in the lower voices then brings in the soprano for the 'Trio' section.

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Rialto Ripples

George Gershwin and Will Donaldson collaborated on 'Rialto Ripples. This rag a purely instrumental piece and has been set with a SATTBGbCb recorder orchestra in mind.

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Shake Your Dusters

"Shake Your Dusters" was a scandalous dance of the early ragtime era. The phrase refers to lifting and moving the many petticoats of the day revealing the ankles of the female dancers. Shocking. After you get the ratime rhythm this is a delightfully easy piece to play. 

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Swipesy

'Swipesy' is a colaboration between Scott Joplin & Arthur Marshall. This 'Cake Walk' has style as I am sure the dancers tried to portray in their 'fancy stepping'.

The ATBGbCb arrangement fits perfectly with piano score which was published in 1900.

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That Madrid Rag

Julius Lenzberg composed 'That Madrid Rag' in 1911. Lenzberg has a long histor as a performer and composer. Wikipedia lists over 25 published works. I look forward to digging further the discover more of his work.

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The Chevy Chase

Eubie Blake composer of 'The Chevy Chase' was a major luminary of the New York musical scene. This Foxtrot is imaginative and lively scored for AATBCb recorders. It is 'all about that bass'.  

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The Mississippi Rag

The first "Rag" ever published at least that is what it says on the cover.  This is a great little rag and very good fun to play.

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The Strenous Life

The Strenous Life composed by Scott Joplin around 1905 is a bit oddly named. A speech by Theodore Roosevelt in 1899 carries exactly the same name. There is no evidence of a relationship but... the Roosevelt speech was tremendously influencal in power driven white america. I just wonder if this was the 'Joplin' answer.

I have set this for ATBGb recorders. It has a very nice turn.

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