Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
77 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Do you people like ragtimes?i bought myself a 6 joplin ragtimes book,i have played them for little bit so i dont know alot of them.Its a alt,tenor and piano book so i dont know how it sounds together.I have heard some later jazz pieces wat are conflated with ragtime music.Bass plays always rythm in ragtimes am i right?and fast technical solo parts.so what you think about that music?is it worth to play?
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,302 Posts
Saxjuss: I like it, but I suppose you should define "ragtime." Your reference to Scott Joplin leads me to believe you mean piano-rags.

Ragtime (the pre-jazz form as it is known today) is great music but has limited appeal, other than for background music. Still, it can be played by almost any instrument.

Keep in mind that as jazz was introduced to the world at the beginning of the 20th Century, it too was known as "ragtime" (before it was called "jass") and eventually took on the description "dixieland". Most purists prefer to call early jazz "traditional jazz" or TRAD.

So, if you are asking about Ragtime music (mostly piano, in the A-A-B-B-A-A-C format), it can be played by almost any assortment of instruments. Written charts may be desireable if your players are NOT familiar with the style. If you can find any recordings by SOPRANO SUMMIT, they do a fine job on instrumental versions of famous rags (mostly by Scott Joplin's).

In my view, the most popular Ragtime players use an acoustic piano, maybe with rhythm accompaniment (like a banjo, bass, drums). OR, full orchestration is also successful with this style of music (string sections, a variety of reeds, brass and percussion).

If you mean early jazz when you ask about "ragtime", it too can be played by almost any instrumentation. That kind of jazz is mostly played by ear. To me, written charts stifle the spontaneous nature of good dixieland music.

Yes, the bass String bass, bass sax, or tuba/sousaphone) plays mostly rhythm, accentuating chords and taking an occasional solo. The horns play in harmony and syncopation. As a saxophone player, you could certainly take the melody line and use a second or third reed in a harmony role. It would probably work better if you had some chording instrument in the ensemble as well as a solid bass and MAYBE drums, depending upon the drummer's understanding of early jazz styles.

I've played trad in many instrumental configurations - from just myself to trios (sop sax, banjo, tuba) to eight or nine-piece trad bands.

Can you make money with this music? Maybe, if you are really hot, but frankly, this is the kind of music I play and I'm glad I didn't give up my day-job. Most folks who hear my kind of music like it, but it doesn't draw all that well. DAVE
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
77 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Ty now i know lot more about it:)So it went to dixieland?but what about missisipi and archaistic jazz,do they include some parts of ragtimes too?
And you think its nice to play with 2 alts,tenor,trumpet,drums and bass.(meaby even piano)1-st alt for melody,2-nd alt to secondary part of music(long tones and harmony)tenor playing around melody and some parts of melody too,bass rythm,drums rythm and if piano then it plays rythmic melodie with right hand and sending chords with left,Is that okay?that things fit togehter?Or with that composition its better to be without piano and put a guitar in?chords and pianos main tones then with guitar and bass main tone of bass chords(that thing does bass do always :D)?
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member and Forum Contributor
Joined
·
4,379 Posts
Great CD of Joplin rags with various instruments: "Red Back Book". Gunther Shuller and the New England Ragtime Conservatory.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,302 Posts
I'll concur with the RED BACK BOOK recommendation.

ANY combo of instruments will work as long as each player knows his/her role. Assign one horn to play the melody and the rest of the horns to play counterpoint, if you don't play charts.

I don't know how sophisticated the players are in Estonia, but as I've heard from other European countries (as well as Japan and China), those countries field some amazing trad bands. You may have a collection of players who really understand this music and you may not.

If you do, then assemble them and stomp 'em off. But if they don't know what you are talking about, you should assemble some recorded examples and let them listen.

There is a wealth of recorded material available today on CD . . . look for Louis Armstrong and the Hot Fives and Hot Sevens, King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band, Sidney Bechet and Clarence Williams' Blue Five, Bix Beiderbecke and The Wolverines, Jimmie Noone and The Apex Club Orchestra, Paul Whiteman, The New Orleans Owls, Junie C. Cobb, etc. It goes on and on.

Yes, there are varying styles within the TRAD genre, but it all boils down to a similarity among them - from New Orleans to Chicago to New York and later to the great TRAD JAZZ revival of the 1940's on the west coast of the U.S. (Lu Watters and Turk Murphy).

The ideal trad-band ensemble would be cornet (for the melody; and maybe a second cornet to play the melody in harmony with the lead cornet, ala King Oliver and Louis Armstrong), trombone, hi-reed (clarinet or sop sax), piano, banjo, bass, and drums. But many successful bands have varied that ensemble, mostly to accomodate what was available AND who played well together.

Some trad bands (namely those playing the so-called British trad) dropped the piano from the mix. Other bands (like the one I play with, the Golden Eagle Jazz Band) don't use drums. You go with what you have and you make good music. DAVE
 

·
Forum Contributor 2015-2017, Distinguished SOTW me
Joined
·
3,426 Posts

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,302 Posts
Saxjuss; Go to Youtube and look up "Charquet & Co.". They were a French band from the 1970's that have two clips on that site (the last time I looked). They don't play what is now called Ragtime, but they play hot jazz - and very well. DAVE
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2007-
Joined
·
5,528 Posts
Some of the old standard hymns are ragtime pieces in disguise. Usually, a little timing adjustment is all you need to get the original rag back. It's great stuff but my wife just doesn't understand what I've done to the music and it drive my piano accompanist crazy.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, & Forum Contributor 201
Joined
·
588 Posts
Also look for music by "Charleston" composer and pianist James P. Johnson. His work is considered transitional between ragtime and jazz. He is one of the originators of the stride piano style and was one of Fats Waller's teachers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
I'm surprised nobody mentioned "Saxophobia". This was written and played by Rudy Wiedoft in vaudeville early in the 20th century. From what I understand Wiedoft's playing was one of the prime reasons that people became interested in saxes, especially C mels which allowed players of modest ability to play off piano sheets, since they didn't have to transpose. The first live sax solo I remember hearing was an older kid playing "Saxophobia", it blew me away, I never forgot it. And Wiedoft deserves to be remembered, we all owe him.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,302 Posts
fred12: I agree about your comments, although this thread is more about Ragtime (still undefined), and not so much individual saxophone performances.

In support iof your coments, I'll add TRUMBOLOGY by Frank "Tram" Trumbauer as an example of Weidoeft-inspired C-Mel playing, in the old jazz tradition. I'd hardly call those two saxophone solos Ragtime, as interesting as they may be. DAVE
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
Appreciate the input, I was just trying to point out a ragtime piece which was associated with the sax.

As I understand it, the term "ragtime" comes from the earlier term "raggedy time", meaning that the music was syncopated. While IMHO this music sounds best when played at a lilting pace on a piano, the New England Conservatory recorded some Joplin rags with a full orchestra- strings and all - and it sounded wonderful.

With all deference to Dave (I bought my Buescher TT due in large part to some of his posts, I'm eternally grateful) I continue to believe that "saxophobia" is genuine ragtime.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member and Forum Contributor
Joined
·
4,379 Posts
fred12 said:
the New England Conservatory recorded some Joplin rags with a full orchestra- strings and all - and it sounded wonderful. .
That's the Red Back Book. A trumpet, trombone, clarinet, flute/pic, tuba, piano, drums, viola, cello, bass and a couple of violins. Great arrangements. Also on that CD, The Southland Stingers, with about the same instrumentation and Shelly Manne on drums.

No sax, mild violins, rated G.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,313 Posts
Dave Dolson said:
Keep in mind that as jazz was introduced to the world at the beginning of the 20th Century, it too was known as "ragtime" (before it was called "jass") and eventually took on the description "dixieland". Most purists prefer to call early jazz "traditional jazz" or TRAD.
Anna Wahler (rip), a founding member of the Potomac River Jazz Club and a founding sponsor of the popular Buck Creek Jazz Band, coined a term she applied to music any band played that was not, in her opinion, purist traditional jazz.

She called it STAD, and it stood for, "S**t, that ain't dixieland."

[edited to correct typo in spelling of Anna's last name.]
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,302 Posts
Al: Yes, I knew her - and Buck Creek JB. Buck Creek is among the best trad bands around.

There is a running disagreement about what is and what isn't "Dixieland." There are the purists and there are those who can bend a bit and recognize ALL styles of "Dixieland." My interests run toward the narrow, but I think the whole trad-jazz world would be better off if the purists backed off a bit and "allowed" the other styles to be played and enjoyed by those who like it.

Fred12: I'll agree that SAXOPHOBIA has a ragtime feel to it, I'm just not sure that it is real ragtime, as usually understood by ragtime purists. DAVE
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top