Monday, November 28, 2011

Scott Joplin: Ragtime Classics

Un poco atronadora la toma de sonido en esta "anónima" versión de una buena parte de los clásicos del rey del Ragtime. Pero, en fin, son todos los que están y, como introducción, pues bueno, podría servir. Más cositas de ragtime en próximos posts.
-Jay Bee Rodríguez

Scott Joplin (ca. 1867 – April 1, 1917) was an American composer and pianist. Joplin achieved fame for his ragtime compositions, and was later dubbed "The King of Ragtime". During his brief career, Joplin wrote 44 original ragtime pieces, one ragtime ballet, and two operas. One of his first pieces, the "Maple Leaf Rag", became ragtime's first and most influential hit, and has been recognized as the archetypal rag.

Joplin was born into a musical African American family of laborers in Northeast Texas, and developed his musical knowledge with the help of local teachers. During the late 1880s he travelled around the American South as an itinerant musician, and went to Chicago for the World's Fair of 1893 which played a major part in making ragtime a national craze by 1897.
Publication of his "Maple Leaf Rag" in 1899 brought him fame and had a profound influence on subsequent writers of ragtime. It also brought the composer a steady income for life with royalties of one cent per sale, equivalent to 26 cents per sale in current value.

During his lifetime, Joplin did not reach this level of success again and frequently had financial problems, which contributed to the loss of his first opera, A Guest of Honor. He continued to write ragtime compositions, and moved to New York in 1907. He attempted to go beyond the limitations of the musical form which made him famous, without much monetary success. His second opera, Treemonisha, was not received well at its partially staged performance in 1915. He died from complications of tertiary syphilis in 1917.

Joplin's music was rediscovered and returned to popularity in the early 1970s with the release of a million-selling album of Joplin's rags recorded by Joshua Rifkin, followed by the Academy Award–winning movie The Sting which featured several of his compositions, such as "The Entertainer". The opera Treemonisha was finally produced in full to wide acclaim in 1972. In 1976, Joplin was posthumously awarded a Pulitzer Prize.

02.Euphonic Sounds
03.Fig Leaf Rag

04.Gladiolus Rag

05.Heliotrope Bouquet
06.Maple Leaf Rag

07.Pine Apple Rag

08.The Ragtime Dance

09.Scott Joplin's New Rag

10.Solace: A Mexican Serenade

11.Stoptime Rag
12.Sunflower Slow Drag


14.The Cascades
15.The Easy Winners
16.The Entertainer

17.A Breeze from Alabama

19.Binks' Waltz

20.Combination March


22.Felicity Rag

23.Original Rags

24.Palm Leaf
25.Paragon Rag
26.Search-Light Rag


28.Sugar Cane

29.The Great Crush Collision

30.The Favorite

31.The Nonpareil

32.The Strenuous Life
33.Wall Street Rag


Saturday, November 5, 2011

King Oliver and his Orchestra, 1929-1930

Otra recopilación impecable avalada por el buen hacer del ingeniero John RT Davies que -es opinión ya muy extendida- hizo un servicio a los clásicos hot de los años 20 mucho más adecuado que el de las propias compañías oficiales americanas. Se trata de grabaciones de la orquesta de King Oliver fechadas entre enero de 1929 y septiembre de 1930, donde pese al deterioro de su salud (y también de su carrera profesional) el maestro deja aún abundantes pruebas de su dominio de la trompeta ("Sweet Like This", "Nelson Stomp", "What You Want Me To Do", "Too Late"), acompañado por algunos de los más reputados músicos de aquellos años: los trompetistas Louis Metcalf, Punch Miller,Red Allen y Bubber Miley; los trombonistas Jimmy Archey y Clyde Bernhardt; los saxofonistas Teddy Hill, Charlie Holmes y Omer Simeon; los pianistas James P. Johnson y Louis Russell, entre otros.
Algo más de la mitad de estas grabaciones aparecieron hace años en un doble álbum RCA, pero amén de la superioridad sonora, aquí tenemos también la totalidad de las tomas alternas, incluida la rarísima tercera toma de "Nelson Stomp", ordenadas, por cierto, todas en el segundo disco para mayor comodidad. Algunos trabajos orquestales francamente insuperables en composiciones propias ("Too Late", "I Must Have It", "You're Just My Type"), y también alguna que otra magnífica versión de clásicos muy conocidos ("St James Infirmary", "Frankie And Johnny"), en el que resulta probablemente, junto a la recopilación de sus grabaciones de 1923, el testamento sonoro definitivo del maestro de Nueva Orleans.

-Jay Bee Rodríguez

Disco 1:

01. West End Blues 3:32
02. I've Got That Thing 3:23
03. Freakish Light Blues 3:08
04. Call Of The Freaks 3:21
05. The Trumpet's Prayer 3:12
06. Can I Tell You? 3:09
07. My Good Man Sam 2:55
08. What Do You Want Me To Do? 3:11
09. Sweet Like This 3:26
10. Too Late 3:10
11. I'm A Lonesome Sweetheart 2:44
12. Want You Just Myself 2:54
13. I Can't Stop Loving You 2:50
14. Everybody Does It In Hawaii 3:04
15. Frankie And Johnny 3:07
16. New Orleans Shout 2:39
17. St. James Infirmary 3:39
18. When You're Smiling 3:21
19. I Must Have It 2:54
20. Rhythm Club Stomp (Cursihip Glide) 2:54
21. You're Just My Type 2:26

Disco 2:

01. West End Blues (alt.) 3:35
02. I've Got That Thing (alt.) 3:22
03. Freakish Light Blues (alt.) 3:10
04. Call Of The Freaks (alt.) 3:16
05. The Trumpet's Prayer (alt.) 3:11
06. Can I Tell You? (alt.) 3:09
07. My Good Man Sam (alt.) 2:50
08. Everybody Does It In Hawaii (alt.) 2:52
09. Frankie And Johnny (alt.) 3:08
10. Edna 2:41
11. Boogie Woogie 3:08
12. Mule Face Blues 2:56
13. Struggle Buggy 3:00
14. Don' You Think I Love You? 2:48
15. Olga 3:25
16. Shake It And Break It 2:32
17. Stingaree Blues 3:12
18. What's The Use Of Living Without Love? 3:25
19. You Were Only Passing Time With Me 2:56
20. Nelson Stomp 1 3:09
21. Nelson Stomp 2 3:11
22. Nelson Stomp 3 3:10
23. Stealing Love 3:20

part 1 - part 2 - part 3


King Oliver's "I Must Have It" (1930) on guitar
by Jay Bee Rodríguez