Pioneers of Ragtime

A virtuoso exploration of the toe-tapping piano style that set America alight a hundred years ago and gave rise to styles such as blues and jazz.  Features the syncopated musings of Scott Joplin, Fats Waller, W. C. Handy, Jelly Roll Morton and others.  Gives an entire overview of the genre, explaining what ragtime is, how it arose, and why it’s important.

Two excerpts from this program.

1.”Grace and Beauty,” a 1909 rag by mid-Westerner James Scott.  This aptly named rag is as great as any ever written. White Plains, NY, 2013.

2.”Russian Rag,” a 1918 number written at just the time that ragtime was transitioning into jazz. It’s a unique mixture of rag, jazz, and classical!

Length: 45-90 mins

Sample program (55 mins):

  • Maple Leaf Rag (Scott Joplin)
  • Harlem Rag (Tom Turpin)
  • The Entertainer (Scott Joplin)
  • Waldstein Rag (Beethoven/Muir)
  • Grace and Beauty (James Scott)
  • Alexander’s Ragtime Band (Irving Berlin)
  • The Pearls (Jelly-Roll Morton)
  • Alligator Crawl (Fats Waller)
  • Arcady Rag (Peter Muir)
  • Russian Rag (George Cobb)