Check In w/ the Blue Mirror


School of Ragtime

We're in a 'nothering field again, kings and queenz. We enter w/out as much preparation as we should, really just playas. But we're moved to come off of the wall and enter, even tough we're not ready.

But as we enter we find some of the same things, even if they're arranges differently: You start w/ the darktown swells, raising the standard*; then there's the wild creole style; there's the sexy allure of dance step instructions†; there's the tension between the old world and the new; and then there's the accusations about paving the road to hell.‡ Finally and never to late, there's a buncha scholars who think they missed it, so they go back to find their way back to the roots.

Here's a couple of bullets in the clip for you to marinate on.

  • Scott Joplin, "Ragtime Dance."
  • Air, "Ragtime Dance." We've been lissening to this one since it was an unnaground hit in the vinyl days. Best drum solo in the 70s, a real shoe tickler.◊
You must learn.

* Take partners do the "rag two step", I know you are enjoying yourselves,
You are representatives of dark town's wealth. Stop where you are!

† Ev'rybody now "form a line", Dance nothing but the real ragtime.
Do your best, "forward four steps", you are all very fine.
Let me see you do the "back step prance", Be graceful at ev'ry chance.
You are now enjoying the "ragtime dance". Ev'ry body sing.

‡ The hall was illuminated by electric lights, It certainly was a sight to see;

So many colored folks there without a razor fight... 'Twas a great surprise to me.

Notice. To get the desired effect of "stop time" the pianist will please stamp the heel of one foot heavily upon the floor at every word "stamp." Do not raise the toe of the foot from the floor while stamping. Author.

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