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AN ALBUM OF RAGTIME TENOR BANJO SOLOS. BOOK 2. WRITTEN IN NOTATION & TAB.
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AN ALBUM OF RAGTIME TENOR BANJO SOLOS. BOOK 2. WRITTEN IN NOTATION & TAB.

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CLIFFORD ESSEX MUSIC CO. LTD

The Home of the Banjo, Mandolin, Guitar and Kindred Instruments

An Album of Ragtime Tenor Banjo Solos

Book 2

Written in Notation and Tablature

by Bill Somerville

CONTENTS

CLEOPHA - Scott Joplin
COLE SMOAK - Clarence H. St. John
HIAWATHA RAG - Neil Moret
LOUISIANA RAG - Leon Block
MELODY RAG - Raymond Birch
PARAGON RAG - Scott Joplin
STOPTIME RAG - Scott Joplin
THAT ECCENTRIC RAG - J. Russell  Robinson
THE ENTERTAINER - Scott Joplin
WILD CHERRIES - Ted  Snyder

INTRODUCTION

My first album of Ragtime Solos for the Tenor Banjo has been so well received, that I have been asked by the Clifford Essex Music Co., Ltd., to produce a second book which includes some pieces of Ragtime requested by purchasers of the first album.   As a result of these requests, some well-known Ragtime pieces are included here.
One of the most popular is ‘The Entertainer’ by Scott Joplin, first published in 1902, which has the dedication – ‘To James Brown and his Mandolin Club’.   My arrangement keeps true to the original piano score, using the full range of the tenor banjo.   Another request was for ‘Hiawatha Rag’ by Neil Moret.   This piece was titled simply ‘Hiawatha’, with the sub-title ‘A Summer Idyll’, and is one of my very favourite Ragtime numbers.
‘Cleopha’, a march and two-step by Scott Joplin, is a fine piece of Ragtime, not very well-known, but worth playing.   ‘Cole Smoke’ by Clarence H. St. John was published in 1906, and is an excellent example of Ragtime, moving from minor to major keys which gives much colour to the piece.   I first heard ‘Cole Smoke’ being played by Chris Barber on trombone, in a multi-track recording!   ‘Wild Cherries Rag’ by Ted Snyder, dates from 1908, and is a great piece to play.
‘That Eccentric Rag’ written by J. Russell Robinson in 1912, is another fine piece of Ragtime.   Sometimes better known as ‘Eccentric’ — this is a shortened version, as played by many bands in the 1920s and 1930s.   I enjoy playing ‘Louisiana Rag’ by Leon Block; it was copyrighted in 1911, and is a reasonably simple piece, and well within the capability of most tenor banjoists.
‘Melody Rag’ by Raymond Birch also written in 1911, is a Ragtime version of Rubenstein’s ‘Melody in F’.   It is not an easy piece to play, but with application, it will provide much pleasure to the player.   ‘Paragon Rag’ is another of the four titles in this album by the great Ragtime composer Scott Joplin, and is an interesting piece to play.   Joplin suggests ‘slow march’ as the tempo for this piece; — however I believe he just is discouraging people from playing it fast.   The other Joplin composition is ‘Stoptime Rag’, which is fun to play, with the performer and audience all stamping in time together.
I hope that you will enjoy my selection of pieces from the Ragtime Era, and find my arrangements of these titles interesting and tuneful.   Happy Picking!
Bill Somerville 


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Clifford Essex Music Co. Ltd. | High House, The Dyes, Hindolveston, Dereham, Norfolk NR20 5DQ | Company no. 6334144
Tel: 01485 529323 | Email: cliffordessex@msn.com or info@cliffordessex.net