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Steamboat rag is peach of a tune, it's very well written and certainly sits apart from many of the other ragtime tunes of the period. It begins with the simulated sound of a steam whistle and in the third section, to my ears anyway, it sounds as if the composer has simulated the pulsating sound of the boat's steam engine. I've attached an MP3 of it being played on what appears to be a mechanical orchestrion which I downloaded from YouTube. It's a much more jazzy and uptempo version than my arrangement which could be applied to the banjo. I've added my own embellishments to the second and fourth parts to 'fill the gaps' and make it more suitable for the banjo. The score and midi are in the library...Steve.
Cool tune. I think the last minor strain was a commonly used as a 'improv' addition to many jazzy ragtime player's routines from the 50's.
I love listening to Orchestrion stuff. Many years ago, the Smithsonian Institute Museum had one installed in the "great hall" up in one of the galleries. They would play it hourly. We were touring all the museums and it lit up while we were in the hall...and I danced with my grandmother to it (I was in my early teens, I think). I have an LP they put out at the time.