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 Post subject: WARNING! More Joplin:Weeping Willow
PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 7:43 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 17, 2007 11:26 pm
Posts: 829
Location: Miami, Florida, USA
Here's another simple little rag. Like most of Joplin's rags, it has four 16-measure themes, somewhat like a rondo. AABBACCDD is the most common formula Joplin employs in his rags.

Joplin:Weeping Willow


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 7:51 pm 
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Location: Obamanation, unfortunately...
At first I thought this was some kind of spam because of the "warning" placed on the subject line. But luckily I read the whole thing carefully (not like reading "titus" as something else :wink: :lol: )

I hope you have plans to expand the Joplin database. You should just change your SN to "RagtimeMan" or better yet...."I'm the RagMachine" :o

You did a good job. I am unfamiliar with Joplin (except his two most famous: Entertainer and Maple Leaf rag). Please record more and share with me (us). :!:

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 Post subject: Jopllllllliiiiin
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 2:36 am 
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Posts: 87
Location: Muncie, IN
I love Scott Joplin. The great thing about Joplin's rags is that they can be interpreted in so many ways; swing, march, saloon-ey, romantically...and the best thing about his rags is that there's always one lick in each rag that really gets ya (to me, anway...Reflection Rag has one of the best end sections).
That having been said, I really like this interpretation...it seems like you like to swing this one, and Weeping Willow definately has a swing sound to it, and I believe it's the C section (with the little "scalers" in octaves in the left hand) that you have really nice dynamic contrasts with the "calls" and "answers". The only thing that I think could be a little more consistent is the tempo...you seem to speed up throughout the piece. But your phrasing is beautiful, and very well played.

By the way...have any of you guys heard Joplin playing his own rags? There are CDs out there of his old piano roll transcriptions...although all his rags have "slow" and "not fast" tempo markings, Joplin loved to play 'em fast and definately loved to swing them, almost similar to how Art Tatum would have done it...

Which brings me to another point. When listening to Joplin play his rags, you can hear his improvisations, added grace notes, embellishments, etc. It's really cool if you can get a chance to listen to his playing; it'll give you an idea on cool spots to improvise and types of things to improvise with.

So, there inlies the question on what to do with his rags...he says 'not too fast' or 'slow march tempo', but he swung, and played them quickly himself. I think that shows that Joplin rags can be played in whatever mood you want to play them. Unlike a Chopin nocturne where the interpretation is the feeling you put into it, or a Mozart sonata where it's supposed to sound a certain way, each of Joplin's rags, to me, can have so many different ways of playing them, and each time, they'll sound like a different piece of music.

That's my take on Joplin...Joplin and Chopin are 2 of my favorites. I'm really happy that you've posted this rag, and especially because it's a more unknown rag, and you play it beautifully. Keep up the good work :)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 3:55 am 
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Location: New York
My ear for this stuff is uneducated, but this sounds great. Fun to listen to. All the rag makes me want to move Medtner Op. 54 #6 ("Organ Grinder") up my priority list. Chris, Chase, feel like beating me to it? :-)


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 Post subject: Re: Jopllllllliiiiin
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 7:29 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:29 am
Posts: 692
Location: Germany
That sounds very groovy to me - thank you for sharing!

RichNocturne wrote:
That's my take on Joplin...Joplin and Chopin are 2 of my favorites.


Interesting what you said about the tempi and how Joplin played them itself. By the way, the Chopin etude 25/9 (the so called "Butterfly etude") sounds like a ragtime to me too!

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 Post subject: Re: Jopllllllliiiiin
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 12:17 pm 
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MindenBlues wrote:
the Chopin etude 25/9 (the so called "Butterfly etude") sounds like a ragtime to me too!


For some reason, that makes me laugh. I will have to struggle through it, (or just listen) to see what you mean.

John, this is the first rag I learned. It was a long time ago, so it was fun to hear it again.
I liked your other rags, too. Since we're thinking up titles for you - (we have a Mazurka King) you can be our Rag King.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 2:21 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
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Location: Netherlands
I used to play this one too, before I sold my Joplin book (slowly getting to regret that now :( ).
An infectious performance in great style, sounds as if you really enjoy it. You definitely have a talent for this music. I'll put it up the site asap.

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 Post subject: Weeping
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 6:26 pm 
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Location: Miami, Florida, USA
Thanks for you input. I enjoy reading through the little rags, but I'm really no expert. I just play through them.

There's a keyboard professor at the University of Miami named Paul Posnak who improvises on Joplin rags. He also has a CD of Ernesto Nazareth Tangos which are very nice. I tried to find printed music for the tangos, but they are out of print. Dr. Posnak gave a recital lecture recently showing how Nazareth melodies can be compared to Chopin melodies---veddy interesting...

By the way "Ernie" was a contemporary of Scott Joplin and is sometimes called the Scott Joplin of Argentina.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 6:46 pm 
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Actually Nazareth was a Brazilian. I have a couple of books of works by him and other Brazilian composers. Hardly ever played it, but I think it is great fun. Choros, Polkas, Tangos, Valses, etc... all very much similar to ragtime but with a distint Brazilian flavour. That large country has an amazingly fertile musical legacy.

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 Post subject: Nazareth
PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 6:09 pm 
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You're right. Nazareth is Brazilian. I questioned myself when I said he was Argentine. I must have said that because the tango is an Argentine dance.

I could only find two little pieces by Nazareth, and they were not my favorites. Do you have a book of his works. If so, where did you get it?


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 Post subject: Re: Nazareth
PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 7:16 pm 
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John Robson wrote:
You're right. Nazareth is Brazilian. I questioned myself when I said he was Argentine. I must have said that because the tango is an Argentine dance.

Yeah I know. We have an Argentinian crown princess so the tango is trmendously popular here !

John Robson wrote:
I could only find two little pieces by Nazareth, and they were not my favorites. Do you have a book of his works. If so, where did you get it?

Ha... that is a nice and somewhat long story. You'll have to bear with me a while...

Long long time ago I was heavily into Villa-Lobos (I still am, to a lesser extent) but had great trouble finding his works. Remember this was long before the internet and publishers like Dover who serve up all the kind of exotic stuff. Somehow I learnt about the Museu Villa Lobos in Rio de Janeiro, and wrote to them. They gave me the address of the national music distributor, Fermata do Brasil in Sao Paulo. I wrote them asking if I could order some scores, and received a friendly typed letter saying they would send what I ordered if I sent the cash amount in dollars. Or perhaps they send it first and then asked me to pay, I can't remember. So I eventually received a thick parcel covered with stamps, with a nice handwritten letter from their chief editor Ms. Laura Alouche. I ordered some more and she added some extra things just for fun. We got corresponding for quite a while and she seemed to think I was a real champion of Brazilian music. Not sure how she could do it, but over a period of a year or so she sent me piles of Brazilian stuff for free. Also a music encyclopedia with a handwrittem dedication, and even a picture book about Brazil, which I retorted with sending a picture book about the Netherlands. She even sent me one of her company photo badges so I could see who I was writing to - a rather goodlooking and sistinquished early-middle-aged lady. Perhaps there was something deeper on her side than just being friendly, I am not sure.

After I got married, somehow the conversation dried up, and eventually I was the last to write. And now I'm sitting here with a goodly collection of Brazilian piano curiosa, most of which I have never found the time to play. Frankly it's not all of equal quality, but obviously I cherish all of it, as it has some emotional value. I have an album with 20 pieces of Nazareth and sons (it says Album No.3) and a number of single loose-leaf editions. Also 4 volumes of Centenario do Choro, and plenty of works by Villa-Lobos, Guarneri and others. Perhaps I should give up Bach and Chopin and play some of this instead :lol:

I think I've tried some of the Nazareth pieces, and they are grateful fun works with delectable titles as you can see from the attached scan of the TOC. If you're interested in a particular item I could scan it for you.

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