Ed Sprankle brought up the name of David Thomas Roberts on yesterday's
MMD. Mr. Roberts is the composer of "Roberto Clemente," a tune which
I have always admired -- even more when I heard L. Douglas Henderson's
pianola rendition of the piece.
I decided that it, being slow and a bit melancholy, would make a good
tune 10, the last tune, on a Wurlitzer 165 roll which I am having Tom
Meijer arrange for me. Wurlitzer often started its rolls with a peppy
march or fox-trot "full of snap and ginger" and ended with a slow waltz,
and I wanted to follow suit.
The difficulty was in tracking the composer down, using the obsolete
address shown in the Copyright Office registration for "Roberto
Clemente." I ultimately did make contact with Mr. Roberts and got his
permission to use the tune, with proper acknowledgment and royalty
(from which he will never get rich). He supplied sheet music which
I sent to Tom Meijer, and eventually in good time we will be able to
hear Mr. Roberts' tribute to the late great baseball player and good
Samaritan (Roberto Clemente died on an airplane mercy mission to the
Caribbean) played on the band organ.
How about it, Tom?