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MMD > Archives > April 1998 > 1998.04.05 > 12Prev  Next

RealAudio: Gershwin, Confrey and Others
By Karl Ellison

I've added a few more RealAudio recordings of my player-piano to my
web site:

. Too Tired (Pianostyle #22027)
Pianostyle rolls have the bad habit of not listing the roll's
player or author, but this is a snappy fox-trot story about a couple
that's too tired to do the dishes and too tired to feed the fishes ...

. Swanee (QRS #Q-1007)
   Played and composed by George Gershwin.
"Swanee was George's first big hit song, written in 1919. It was
first sung in a musical show at the Capitol Theater in NYC, but not
until Gershwin's friend Al Jolson heard this song and incorporated it
into one of his shows, "Sinbad", did the tune become a national
favorite.  The recording sold 2,000,000 records and the publisher sold
a million copies of the sheet music.  Lyrics are by Irving Caesar with
whom George frequently collaborated in his early days as a composer.
George had written many songs before Swanee, and had even composed a
musical, but this song made him famous."  -- "Music By Gershwin", 1977
The University Society, Inc.

. Wedding Of The Painted Doll (Roll mfg. & # unknown)

. Kitten On The Keys (QRS #10-353)
Played and composed by Zez Confrey -- his first published song.  "Zez
was staying at his grandmother's house over the weekend and after a
quiet evening had retired to his room. Suddenly he was awakened by a
strange series of sounds which seemed to be emanating from  the old
fashioned upright piano in the parlor. He went down to investigate and
discovered the house cat promenading back and forth across the
keyboard. The incident was later developed into one of the most
fabulous of all piano fantasies" -- "Zez Confrey Ragtime, Novelty and
Jazz Piano Solos", 1982 Belwin Mills Publishing Co.

. My Pet (QRS #100827 )
Played and composed by Zez Confrey -- his second published song.  I got
creative with the pedaling when I recorded it.  A quirky tune that
sounds like it was written about a dog gone bonkers.  "Zez successfully
realized with "My Pet" what Scott Joplin had achieved 19 years earlier
with "Maple Leaf Rag" -- his innovative use of diverse elements was as
startling and original as Joplin's creation of a kind of music with an
organized and deliberate format utilizing extended syncopations with an
even, steady rhythm. These permutations were to change the course of
ragtime for the entire 1920's"  -- ibid.

. Second Hand Rose (QRS #1637, Q-164)
Still available from QRS, a Victor Arden played piece that sounds like

Karl Ellison
Ashland, Massachusetts

(Message sent Sun 5 Apr 1998, 17:04:30 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  Confrey, Gershwin, Others, RealAudio

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