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Information about Imagine

Published on January 15, 2008

Author: Stella


The evolution of Ragtime piano into Novelty, Stride and Jazz:  The evolution of Ragtime piano into Novelty, Stride and Jazz Tom Cortese Composer, performer, and collector of rare and unusual piano music (Research Scientist) (Innovative Computing Lab) (University of Tennessee, Knoxville) Outline:  Outline Musical terminology (?) Some trends in piano music history (?) Ragtime (?) Novelty piano (?) A musical progression and examples (?) A few ragtime and novelty tunes Some musical terms:  Some musical terms Notes Scales and arpeggios Intervals Chords Tonality Melody / Accompaniment Improvisation A grab-bag of musical ideas:  A grab-bag of musical ideas Intervals and tunings Melody and accompaniment Dynamics Harmonic richness (unique notes) Syncopation and Polyrhythm Repetition, Call and Answer More on Intervals:  More on Intervals Unison (1:1) Octave (2:1) Fifth (3:2) Major Third* (4:3) Minor Third* (5:4) Sixth Fourth, Second Seventh, ninth, eleventh, thirteenth Experiments by Classical Composers:  Experiments by Classical Composers Paul Hindeminth (“Ragtime”, from “1922”) Erwin Schulhoff (Toccata sur “Kitten on the Keys”, “Charleston”) Samuel Barber (“Blues”, from “Excursions”) Leopold Godowsky (“A Little Tango Rag”, from “Triakontameron”) Claude Debussy (“Golliwog’s Cakewalk”, “the Little Nigar”, “Etude pour les Quatres”) Conlon Nancarrow (“Boogie-Woogie Suite”) Igor Stravinsky (Jazz – anybody know more details?) A Bird’s-Eye View:  A Bird’s-Eye View For centuries, classical music has become increasingly complex: Gregorian Chants Baroque (e.g., Bach, Mozart) Romantic (e.g., Chopin, Brahms) Impressionistic (e.g., Debussy, Ravel) 20th-Century (e.g., Honneger, Dutilleux) View from a different bird’s eye:  View from a different bird’s eye Here is another example of musical development: Blues Boogie-Woogie (e.g., Ammons, Lewis) March (e.g., Sousa) Ragtime (e.g., Joplin, Lamb, Scott) Novelty Piano (e.g., Confrey, Mayerl) Stride (e.g., Johnson, Waller) Jazz (e.g., Brubeck, Corea) Polka Waltz Related Artistic Developments:  Related Artistic Developments The development of instrumental music is intertwined with many aspects of popular culture: Dance (e.g., ballet) Spiritual (e.g., dixieland funerals, camp meetings) Theater (e.g., Vaudeville, Broadway musicals) Home player pianos and piano rolls Cinema (e.g., silent movies, soundtracks) Radio / Television (e.g., commercials, MTV) PCs / Internet (e.g., home studios, Napster, iPod) Live vs. Recorded Narrowing the focus – What is Ragtime?:  Narrowing the focus – What is Ragtime? “The first truly American form of music, with distinct styles from different regions” “The only kind of music allowed by law in any saloon in any Western movie” “An instrumental, syncopated march” “The music they used to play during silent movies” “A combination of African polyrhythms and European musical traditions” “That stuff you hear in Shakey’s Pizza” “Oh, you mean ‘The Sting’?” “The soundtrack of brothels? That’s not real music” (pulling iPod or cell-phone out of ear) “huh?” A recipe for Novelty Piano:  A recipe for Novelty Piano Start with ragtime Season the left hand octaves with tenths Relax the constraints of the traditional oom-pah left hand Add 9ths, 11ths, 13ths, and augmented chords Stir in some whole-tone and chromatic scales Stop for a break once in a while Add a pinch of two-hand rhythmic effects Consider using the piano to imitate other things An idealized musical progression:  An idealized musical progression March, Polka, Cake-walk Left: octaves, mostly on beat, slow changes Right: straight or dotted, no syncopation, no breaks, simpler harmony Ragtime Left: octaves on beat, chords off beat (oom-pah), slow changes, usually not fast Right: straight or dotted, syncopation, no breaks, simpler harmony AABACCDD structure is similar to classical Rondo format An idealized musical progression (cont.):  An idealized musical progression (cont.) Waltz (digression) Like Ragtime, except three beats per measure Hemiola effect used by classical composers Tango (digression) Left: like Ragtime, but syncopated Right: can be syncopated Boogie-Woogie (digression) Left: Driving, repetitive, rhythmic, pulsing, usually fast Right: Syncopated, improvised, polyrhythm An idealized musical progression (cont.):  An idealized musical progression (cont.) Blues (digression) Actually fairly similar to Boogie-Woogie with a different left hand, and often much slower Stride Left: Oom-pah, faster changes, walking bass Right: can be syncopated, more complex harmony Novelty Piano Complex harmony, fast tempo, syncopation, hemiola, chromatic runs, written breaks, polyrhythm, two-hand effects, impressions, … An idealized musical progression (cont.):  An idealized musical progression (cont.) Walking Bass Like Stride, without the chords (opposite ends of a continuum) Can be fully improvised, within the rather loose constraints of original song structure Is conceptually very similar to the baroque two-part invention! Modern Jazz Can be fully improvised, within the rather loose constraints of original song structure Intro—Solos—Outro format is conceptually very similar to the “theme and variations” format Novelty piano characteristics:  Novelty piano characteristics Trains (rhythm, whistle) Reality impressions (chimes, music box, etc…) Unusual harmony (whole tone, chromatic, parallel 7ths, 9ths, 11ths, etc…) Instrument impressions (banjo, bagpipe, etc…) Unusual rhythm (swing feel, or steady beat with accents in unexpected places) Fast breaks (Liszt) Often fast tempo Some Novelty Piano Composers:  Some Novelty Piano Composers Leroy Anderson Roy Bargy Rube Bloom Hans Bund Zez Confrey* Raie da Costa Kurt Engel Ernst Fischer* Gerd Giese Jaroslav Jezek Werner Klein Billy Mayerl* Fred Peltzer Lothar Perl* Eric Plessow* Ethel Ponce Lee Sims* Otto Stolzenwald Dana Suesse R. Wismar *(Highlighted in red) Grace and Beauty (1909) by James Scott:  Grace and Beauty (1909) by James Scott Intro: Singing notes A: Modified oom-pah left B: Call and answer, tremelos C: Call and answer D: Call and answer, fast chord changes near end I A A B B A’ C C’ D D Original Rags (1899) picked by Scott Joplin:  Original Rags (1899) picked by Scott Joplin Gladiolus Rag (1907) by Scott Joplin:  Gladiolus Rag (1907) by Scott Joplin Maple Leaf Rag (1899) by Scott Joplin:  Maple Leaf Rag (1899) by Scott Joplin “Make-believe Rag” by Janis Joplin Virtuoso Rag by Johnny Guarnieri:  Virtuoso Rag by Johnny Guarnieri A: Even eighths right, stride left, rapid chord changes B: Like A, with tenths on repeat C: Unusual key change, breaks D: Main section E: Temporary reprieve from fast tempo : Short bridge O: Extended coda ending with octave scales left A A B B A C C D D E D  A A O Sonniger Morgen (1934) by Ernst Fischer:  Sonniger Morgen (1934) by Ernst Fischer Intro: Fourths, harmony A: Fourths, call and answer, pah-oom B: Richer harmony, pah-oom C: Parallel descending tenths, technically challenging Outro: Like a coda in classical music I A A B B A C C A A B’ B’ A O Alerta! by Ernesto Nazareth:  Alerta! by Ernesto Nazareth Intro: Novelty-style break A: Basically ragtime, with slightly modified oom-pah left B: Lots of syncopation right, modified oom-pah left C: Trio section; syncopation, use of high register I A A B B I A C C I A Mittsommerzeit (Midsummer Time) by Ernst Fischer:  Mittsommerzeit (Midsummer Time) by Ernst Fischer A: Fourths right, Tenths left, lilting rhythm B: Relatively slight meandering from A C: Unusual key change, rich harmony, descending 9ths Intro: Dramatic change back to intro with no bridge between sections I A A B B A C C’ I A A Sweet William (1938) by Billy Mayerl:  Sweet William (1938) by Billy Mayerl Intro: Ninth chords A: Two voices right, large strides, pah-oom left B: Scales and thirds right, subdued oom-pah left Outro: Short coda I A A B B A O Kitten on the Keys (1921) by Zez Confrey:  Kitten on the Keys (1921) by Zez Confrey Intro: Parallel fourths, swing feel, odd leaps A: Fourths!! Modified oom-pah left B: Unusual key change. Similar to classic ragtime, except for fourths C: Scherzo, fourths, syncopation, kitten on keys impression I A A B B I A C C Bugatti Step (1931) by Jaroslav Jezek:  Bugatti Step (1931) by Jaroslav Jezek Intro: Fourths, two-hand effect, rhythm games, chromatic, parallel seventh chords A: Rich harmony, large strides, break with hemiola, chromatic, accents B: Parallel fourths, oom-pah left hand, tenths on repeat Outro: Hemiola  Short bridges between sections I A A  B B  A O Ragtime Nightingale (1915) by Joseph Lamb:  Ragtime Nightingale (1915) by Joseph Lamb A: Based on Chopin’s “Revolutionary Etude” (minor key is somewhat unusual in classic ragtime) B: Subdued oom-pah C: Lighter, trio  Short bridge connecting two sections I A A B B A C C  B Baltimore Todolo by Eubie Blake:  Baltimore Todolo by Eubie Blake A: Rapid chord changes, singing notes right, tenths left B: Singing notes right, oom-pah left : Short bridge between sections C: Singing notes right, oom-pah left O: Short coda ending A A B B’ A  C C’ A O Slide31:  Questions? Discussion? Wanna hear Tom play a few ragtime and novelty piano tunes? Thank you for attending! Extra ideas:  Extra ideas Popular / Classical (Gershwin, Gottschalk) International (Nazareth, Fischer, Jezek, Gottschalk) Jelly Roll Morton Alberti bass and ragtime “Oom-pah” Blues harmonic structure and baroque music Trills (harpsichord) and “shakes”

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