Having been introduced to the excellent Paragon Ragtime Orchestra by Milwaukee, I searched out some of their YouTube recordings and came across this tune (MP3 attached). It's more of a foxtrot than a rag and although written in 1914, it has the style of something more closely associated with the early jazz music of the 1920s. All I was able to discover about the composer was that he was an associate of W.C.Handy and his Memphis Blues Band.  I was a little apprehensive that it would work on classic banjo but I'm pleased with the result, if you compare it with the MP3, I think it follows it pretty closely.  The score and midi are in the library....Steve.

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Really sounds great!

I looked up the song to see what Paragon Ragtime Orchestra album it is featured on. It’s on a CD entitled “Black Manhattan, Vol. 2”. It is one of a three volume series.

I found this especially interesting as I just received a book in the mail today with the same title!

On a side note, if anyone is interested, while looking up the CD’s, I found that a reprint of the book is to be released tomorrow for less than half of what I paid for my older copy: https://www.amazon.com/Black-Manhattan-James-Weldon-Johnson/dp/1632...

“In this classic work, first published in 1930, James Weldon Johnson, one of the leading lights of the Harlem Renaissance, combined the skills of the historian, social scientist, and the reporter to trace the New York black experience from the earliest settlements on Chatham Square during the pre-revolutionary period to the triumphant achievements of Harlem in the 1920s. Featuring a foreword by Zadie Smith.”

Thanks for the info, I'll have a look at this. Here's a picture I came across of W.C. Handy and Bryan...Steve


Milwaukee Matzen said:

Really sounds great!

I looked up the song to see what Paragon Ragtime Orchestra album it is featured on. It’s on a CD entitled “Black Manhattan, Vol. 2”. It is one of a three volume series.

I found this especially interesting as I just received a book in the mail today with the same title!

On a side note, if anyone is interested, while looking up the CD’s, I found that a reprint of the book is to be released tomorrow for less than half of what I paid for my older copy: https://www.amazon.com/Black-Manhattan-James-Weldon-Johnson/dp/1632...

“In this classic work, first published in 1930, James Weldon Johnson, one of the leading lights of the Harlem Renaissance, combined the skills of the historian, social scientist, and the reporter to trace the New York black experience from the earliest settlements on Chatham Square during the pre-revolutionary period to the triumphant achievements of Harlem in the 1920s. Featuring a foreword by Zadie Smith.”

Very cool!
I tried finding him in the book but was unsuccessful.

Steve Harrison said:

Thanks for the info, I'll have a look at this. Here's a picture I came across of W.C. Handy and Bryan...Steve

Great to see you discussing the PRO!  Check out Vol. 3 of the Black Manhattan series.  I was very lucky to be asked to play “minstrel banjo” on one of the songs: James Bland’s “Oh Dem Golden Slippers” featuring baritone Edward Pleasant. If you listen carefully (preferably with headphones) you can hear me playing stroke-style on my Hartel-Ashborn banjo. https://youtu.be/02LQPCjEICU

Very cool! I can hear you fairly easily without headphones. I think I am going to pick up that set of CD’s once I get some more spending money. At the moment, one can get all three CD’s for $30 (33% off) via the PRO’s website.

Paul Draper said:

Great to see you discussing the PRO!  Check out Vol. 3 of the Black Manhattan series.  I was very lucky to be asked to play “minstrel banjo” on one of the songs: James Bland’s “Oh Dem Golden Slippers” featuring baritone Edward Pleasant. If you listen carefully (preferably with headphones) you can hear me playing stroke-style on my Hartel-Ashborn banjo. https://youtu.be/02LQPCjEICU

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