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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1916869
06/21/12 04:42 PM
06/21/12 04:42 PM
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Credit IS given, in this thread and worldwide. No-one here indicated you should apologise for liking Joplin?

This reminds me of the bit in `City Slickers` where the young black dentist says: `Yes, we`re black AND we`re dentists, don`t make an issue out of it` and his father says: `they`re not making in an issue out of it, YOU`RE making an issue`


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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1917326
06/22/12 02:43 PM
06/22/12 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Diane...
Well maybe Joplin didn't fit into the "white" boys club is because he's "BLACK"!


Joplin was white, the TV back then was black and white hense the illusion.

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Samuel1993] #1918147
06/24/12 03:32 PM
06/24/12 03:32 PM
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Well, my point really was that Classical players don't want us "black music" people included. Otherwise we won't have to have two separate groups;
Pianist Corner and the other group versus
Pianist Corner (Non-Classical)!

My point is that it's still segregated now isn't it!

Think Joplin knew that all to well back then!




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Diane
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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1918205
06/24/12 06:09 PM
06/24/12 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Diane...
Well, my point really was that Classical players don't want us "black music" people included. Otherwise we won't have to have two separate groups;
Pianist Corner and the other group versus
Pianist Corner (Non-Classical)!

My point is that it's still segregated now isn't it!

Think Joplin knew that all to well back then!





I'd have to kind of agree here with Diane. Most Joplin enthusiasts (like me) know his history, and he always sought the respect of being treated as one of the great composers. Ragtime was a "novelty" of its day, and basically looked at as "black music", so Joplin died without ever getting that respect - that, despite coming up with Treemonisha (if you've never seen or heard this, I urge you to look it up on YouTube), and non-rag compositions like "Solace", which many classically trained pianists play...and "Bethena" is still one of my favorites...imagine the innovation of coming up with a rag in 3/4 time. That was pure genius, IMHO, but I guess since it's not "musically complex" like a Chopin etude, that would warrant an experienced classical pianist to criticize it.

Also to compare Joplin to stride pianists like Jelly Roll Morton is actually dis-respecting him as a composer because stride wouldn't even be around if it weren't for Joplin. The top stride pianists I've heard do respect Joplin's music and have improvised his pieces and made them "stride-like." It's really an unfair comparison and not even apples-to-apples.

Sorry to say, statements like this are typical of some of the classical music snobbery that exists in these forums.

PS-I'm no music theorist nor even a serious player anymore, but here's a good resource and scholarly explanations of all of Joplin's works, from none other than Perfesser Bill. smile

http://www.perfessorbill.com/pbmidi15.shtml



YouTube Channel
Scott Joplin Repertoire


Music washes away from the soul
the dust of everyday life.
- Berthold Auerbach


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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Samuel1993] #1919080
06/26/12 06:05 PM
06/26/12 06:05 PM
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Over-rated, under-rated. "You like potatoes," as they say. The discussion about the music-worthiness of numbers such as "Solace," which reminded me of this thread when I was playing it just now, also made me remember an observation which was once made of Steve Wozniack. It regarded his contributions, at its infancy, to the kind of computer which didn't take up several rooms or require its own power station. He was able to make a minimal and graceful circuit do tasks which had required far greater resources before his time. He may not have the loveliest face to look upon, but when he was described by a contemporary as "the Mozart of digital design," it fit well and showed the parallel of the creative greats.

I think Mozart would have recognized Wozniack's greatness, and I think Chopin would have recognized Joplin's... and I wonder what Bach would have said. It is a realm where color and circumstance are really beside the question. And it goes both ways, for Joplin would never have presumed to shove Chopin aside, nor probably even compare himself.

The observation about the novelty value of Joplin's work is true enough, for its time; God knows enough hacks tried to imitate him and cash in. The power of the spark it took, to assert itself across the vast gap in social position, is obvious enough when we imagine Daddy's face when he heard his daughters at home in the parlor, playing the same piano piece he had heard, just the night before, at the whorehouse.

Ah, the bittersweet tendresse of the "Solace." Sketched so spare, yet so movingly; a heart won, a love never forgotten. I think of pieces like this when I think of his gift of musicianship, and really would never bother with the overblown "Maple Leaf," or "Entertainer." But it's ok, you like potatoes and I'm watching my figure. Eat what you like.

Last edited by Jeff Clef; 06/26/12 06:08 PM.

Clef

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Jeff Clef] #1919231
06/27/12 12:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Clef

The power of the spark it took, to assert itself across the vast gap in social position, is obvious enough when we imagine Daddy's face when he heard his daughters at home in the parlor, playing the same piano piece he had heard, just the night before, at the whorehouse.



Yikes! I think that was uncalled for!

What exactly was your point for saying THAT!!!

Maybe your point was the "her daddy" WAS AT THE WHOREHOUSE just the night before, and that's how he HEAR IT! . . .

Last edited by Diane...; 06/27/12 12:25 AM.

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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1919282
06/27/12 04:57 AM
06/27/12 04:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Diane...
Originally Posted by Jeff Clef

The power of the spark it took, to assert itself across the vast gap in social position, is obvious enough when we imagine Daddy's face when he heard his daughters at home in the parlor, playing the same piano piece he had heard, just the night before, at the whorehouse.



Yikes! I think that was uncalled for!

What exactly was your point for saying THAT!!!

Maybe your point was the "her daddy" WAS AT THE WHOREHOUSE just the night before, and that's how he HEAR IT! . . .


Weren't you aware of the social context of much ragtime and early jazz piano-playing? (And, indeed, of one of the meanings of the word "jazz"?)

Or were you just knee-jerking to a "naughty" word? :-)

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Exalted Wombat] #1919361
06/27/12 08:38 AM
06/27/12 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
Originally Posted by Diane...
Originally Posted by Jeff Clef

The power of the spark it took, to assert itself across the vast gap in social position, is obvious enough when we imagine Daddy's face when he heard his daughters at home in the parlor, playing the same piano piece he had heard, just the night before, at the whorehouse.



Yikes! I think that was uncalled for!

What exactly was your point for saying THAT!!!

Maybe your point was the "her daddy" WAS AT THE WHOREHOUSE just the night before, and that's how he HEAR IT! . . .


Weren't you aware of the social context of much ragtime and early jazz piano-playing? (And, indeed, of one of the meanings of the word "jazz"?)

Or were you just knee-jerking to a "naughty" word? :-)


Well, I think the over indulgence of "alcohol" brought a lot of places to an ultimate low! But anyone who can play the piano like some of those parlor piano players has my "ultimate" admiration and respect!

I have yet to go to a dance where they are playing jazz, blues, jive, swing, rumba pasodoble, or the tango, and then hear someone pipe up and say, "Oh can you play some "classical"! grin

Never heard anyone ask that on my watch! Regardless of where great dance music comes from, it takes pure talent to play it!





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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Samuel1993] #1920264
06/28/12 06:58 PM
06/28/12 06:58 PM
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I'm sorry you were offended, Diane--- if that's what you were saying. I suppose there are a lot of other words one could use for a place of assignation, but I notice that you didn't use any of them. It is a fact, the classic rag was not born on the concert stage, and from one kind of 'parlor' to the other was a long journey, socially. It took the span of a whole lifetime, on its own, to make its way to the innocence of the concert hall, the recording studio, the piano lesson, and the Collected Works.

I've enjoyed your intelligent and interesting posts in the past. If you're saying it's offensive that Joplin had no other venue available for his talent, I have to agree, and he did crave for it for much of his life. He went broke trying to make it happen, backing a threadbare and unsuccessful production of Treemonisha, out of his own pocket. His earlier work, A Guest of Honor, is lost entirely--- not a single page or note of it has come down to our time.

It was not alcohol that took Scott Joplin's life, but third-stage neurosyphllis--- an untreatable disease in 1914; it was the AIDS of its time, as unmentionable in the Gilded Age as the real AIDS was in the Reagan Administration.

I apologize for offending you, or those who didn't write, whose ears are too tender to hear such frank and unminced words about the 'houses' of the period, and going so far as to endorse or condemn those 'in the life,' then or now, is beyond my purpose in writing. If even that opportunity had been closed to Scott Joplin, we may very well have had nothing from him at all.

I'd like to think that we have tried to do better by the creative artists of our own time, but I'm not so sure of it.


Clef

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Samuel1993] #1920306
06/28/12 09:15 PM
06/28/12 09:15 PM
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I never seem to tire of playing or listening to Joplin, whereas I sometimes tire of James Scott and contemporary ragtime (not David Thomas Roberts though, he's very good). I have loved Treemonisha from the first time I heard it by chance on the radio over thirty years ago. One thing continues to mystify me however. Why was a fully professional, high quality movie seemingly never made of the beautiful Houston Opera production when it ran for so long ? I had to buy what is obviously an amateur video of it from an obscure seller on the internet. I have the CDs of course, which are excellent, but the absence of a DVD of what must surely be a huge event in American musical history still puzzles me. Especially when so much brilliantly remastered tripe from the past is all too readily available.

Of course I'm from New Zealand, so perhaps there is something I don't understand about the way commercial music works in the States.


"We shall always love the music of the masters, but they are all dead and now it's our turn." - Llewelyn Jones, my piano teacher
Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Jeff Clef] #1920611
06/29/12 12:16 PM
06/29/12 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Clef
I've enjoyed your intelligent and interesting posts in the past. If you're saying it's offensive that Joplin had no other venue available for his talent, I have to agree, and he did crave for it for much of his life. He went broke trying to make it happen, backing a threadbare and unsuccessful production of Treemonisha, out of his own pocket. His earlier work, A Guest of Honor, is lost entirely--- not a single page or note of it has come down to our time.



Thank you for the reply Jeff! I really appreciate it!

So back to the subject at hand!! if it's "GOSSIP" people want about any piano player, here it is!!

Robert Schumann killed himself (commited suicide)! So what does THAT have to do with his music? Absolutely nothing!

Beethoven died of lead poisoning because he "drank" too much! So what does THAT have to do with his music! Absolutely nothing!

Beethoven & Mozart were rumoured to have had Syphilis! So what does THAT have to do with their music? Absolutely nothing!

George Sand was rumoured to be a slut and she was not allowed to put her real female name on her compositions, so she used a mans name! What does THAT have to do with "her" music? Absolutley nothing!

Tchaikovsky was a homosexual! (You know, the guy who wrote the "Nut Cracker" and the other thing about a "fairy"! grin Sorry, I couldn't resist saying that!!!! So, what does THAT have to do with his music? Absolutely nothing!

Scott Joplin was a piano player who played in some less that ideal venues! So what does THAT have to do with his musical ability, composition, and talent!!! Absolutely nothing!

So let's see, would anyone of you piano players care to "share" something from "your life that is a dirty little secret"?

Let's just enjoy music for our ears rather than worrying about satisfying our ears with "gossip"!!!!

Here's an amazing composition from Scott Joplin! Music to my ears!




Last edited by Diane...; 06/29/12 12:41 PM.

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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Samuel1993] #1920646
06/29/12 01:56 PM
06/29/12 01:56 PM
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You refuse to admit any connection between a composer's personality/lifestyle and his music? I'm not sure you can isolate (and sanitise)the music from the man quite that glibly! Do you never see a personality behind a composer's works? Is it only the negative (to you) aspects that you feel a need to block?

Interesting that you vary your mantra: "So what does THAT have to do with his musical ability, composition, and talent!!! Absolutely nothing!" slightly in Joplin's case. Do you admit some slight connection between lifestyle and musical output in his case?


BTW, are you under the impression that George Sand was a composer? She was certainly a composer's mistress (and several other people's :-)

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Exalted Wombat] #1922209
07/03/12 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
You refuse to admit any connection between a composer's personality/lifestyle and his music? I'm not sure you can isolate (and sanitise)the music from the man quite that glibly! Do you never see a personality behind a composer's works? Is it only the negative (to you) aspects that you feel a need to block?


Well I would actually associate composers impressions more on "ERA"! But I'm sure you are going to argue that . . . too! grin Like the roaring 20's, Dirty 30's (music had to be bluesy to show the struggles), The rock n' roll 50's and 60's, The disco ball style 70's, and on and on it goes. As much as I hated every single moment of taking my classical history, it was made very clear that composers copied, or tried to copy, each other's styles. So jealousy played a huge part and I think it still does with composers today! Styles of music changed like the styles of dresses did.


Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
BTW, are you under the impression that George Sand was a composer? She was certainly a composer's mistress (and several other people's :-)

Yes I believe she was a composer. She wanted to become famous. Did I forget to mention that George Sand, was a close friend of "Chopin"! Oh yes she was! grin

Last edited by Diane...; 07/03/12 12:46 PM.

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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1922371
07/03/12 07:58 PM
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Hi everyone. This thread seems to have gone a little OT, so I thought I'd share this orchestrated arrangement of Joplin's "The Chrysanthemum".

It was actually an instrumental version that inspired me to perform the piano version, which IMO sounds quite plain and ordinary compared to this one.

Anyway, point is...I think the quality of a composer is how good his/her compositions sound when orchestrated..Think Bach, Beethoven, Mozart........Joplin.



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Music washes away from the soul
the dust of everyday life.
- Berthold Auerbach


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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Samuel1993] #1922378
07/03/12 09:14 PM
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In the end, Joplin did come around to swinging the eighth notes he played on Maple Leaf Rag.

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Jazz+] #1922483
07/04/12 05:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Jazz+
In the end, Joplin did come around to swinging the eighth notes he played on Maple Leaf Rag.


Ouch! Source?

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1922484
07/04/12 05:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Diane...
Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
BTW, are you under the impression that George Sand was a composer? She was certainly a composer's mistress (and several other people's :-)

Yes I believe she was a composer. She wanted to become famous. Did I forget to mention that George Sand, was a close friend of "Chopin"! Oh yes she was! grin


Interesting. She was a prolific writer. I can't find any record of musical works (though, as you say, she had some musician in her :-) What evidence of her as a composer have you found?

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Diane...] #1922486
07/04/12 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Diane...
As much as I hated every single moment of taking my classical history, it was made very clear that composers copied, or tried to copy, each other's styles. So jealousy played a huge part and I think it still does with composers today! Styles of music changed like the styles of dresses did.

You equate "following the style of the day" with jealousy? Why? Quite the opposite, surely?

Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Exalted Wombat] #1922584
07/04/12 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
Originally Posted by Diane...
As much as I hated every single moment of taking my classical history, it was made very clear that composers copied, or tried to copy, each other's styles. So jealousy played a huge part and I think it still does with composers today! Styles of music changed like the styles of dresses did.

You equate "following the style of the day" with jealousy? Why? Quite the opposite, surely?


Well, I do recall learning that certain composers would attend other composer's performances and write out (by hand because they didn't have photo-copying machines back then) they would write out the performance by hand!


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Re: Scott Joplin - an underrated composer? [Re: Exalted Wombat] #1922585
07/04/12 11:45 AM
07/04/12 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
Originally Posted by Diane...
Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
BTW, are you under the impression that George Sand was a composer? She was certainly a composer's mistress (and several other people's :-)

Yes I believe she was a composer. She wanted to become famous. Did I forget to mention that George Sand, was a close friend of "Chopin"! Oh yes she was! grin


Interesting. She was a prolific writer. I can't find any record of musical works (though, as you say, she had some musician in her :-) What evidence of her as a composer have you found?


I learned about George Sand thru my music history! Was told that she wanted to be taken seriously as a piano performer in an "all mens" performing world, but men didn't acknowledge women as performers and thus women were not allowed to put their names on compositions, thus the reason George Sand changed her name from her female name to a man's name. The same went for Clara Schumann (Robert Schumann's wife) as she simply put her husband's name on many of "her" music compositions just to get them published. Clara was allowed to perform in the place of husband when he was unable to perform. But that was not the norm for woman to ever perform in a public concert!

So I will just say that "discrimination" played a huge part and maybe we are missing some amazing musical work because of it!
So my conclusion here would be that blacks and woman were discriminated against!

I just have to say that I am grateful for Scott Joplin's "Maple Leaf Rag" for it has brought such pleasure and fun to many of my student's who have enjoyed playing it and performing it. And isn't enjoyment and pleasure from playing the piano, what it's all about!?




Last edited by Diane...; 07/04/12 11:51 AM.

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