Well, I hope you enjoyed Roy Carew’s “Recreation Rag no.2” that I have posted some days ago.
Today I’m posting “Recreation Rag no.1
” and “New Orleans Honky Tonk
”, other two pieces by Roy Carew
Carew composed the two Recreation Rags, maybe somehow inspired by Artie Matthews’ Pastime Rags series, and submitted them to John Stark, who refused the pieces.
Anyway these pieces are very interesting, since Carew put some floating rag strains in there, including music played by Tony Jackson
, the famous ragtime pianist and singer that also Jelly Roll Morton admired!
Please pay attention to the last strain in “Recreation Rag no.1”: that’s a funky strain full of slurs and that is the first part of a piece Carew heard from Tony Jackson. That was part of Jackson’s Naked Dance
, something the professors used to play to accompany the dances of the upstairs girls of the bordellos.
As you probably know, Roy Carew asked Jelly Roll Morton if he remembered the piece and if he could try to make a piece out of that. The result was the famous “Naked Dance” as played by Jelly Roll Morton. Curiously, the so called “ratty strain” that Carew remembered is not included in this version…
You’ll see I also included the published version of Morton & Jackson’s “Naked Dance
”, arranged by J. Lawrence Cook
after one of Morton’s recordings of the piece.
Since Roy Carew was interviewed in the 1960s and he also offered samples of his piano playing then, I’m also attaching his recording of the strain played by Tony Jackson. It’s in key of C major, but you’ll see it’s the same strain included in “Recreation Rag no.1” in F major.
About “New Orleans Honky Tonk”, which I kindly received from Benjamin Intartaglia, I would like you to pay attention to its first strain, which is also included in different key in Recreation Rag no.1’s penultimate strain (just before the “ratty strain by Tony Jackson!): that strain is obviously Roy Carew’s version of the last strain in “Pastime Rag no.2” – let’s listen to Roy Carew’s interpretation of the Patime Rag (I included the recording) to hear that strain played in his own style!
Also, in “New Orleans Honky Tonk” there’s another strain Carew heard from Tony Jackson, the last strain. Again he also recorded a sample of that, that I’m also posting.
Another recording of Roy Carew I posted is a snippet of “Recreation Rag no.2” were he plays the “Get Over Dirty” riff also present in “Tiger Rag” and “Barrel House Rag” and then a recording of his well remembered “Full Moon”, a very nice rag (whose first strain is also the second in “New Orleans Honky Tonk”).
You can find the published sheet music of Carew’s “Full Moon” in Benjamin Intartaglia’s website
Then, I recommend that you check these pages on Roy Carew on Mike Meddings’ website
(Roy Carew on Tony Jackson)
Roy Carew also had the immense honour to interview and write articles with the one I consider the very best ragtime pianist I’ve ever heard, Brun Campbell
, the so-called “Ragtime Kid
” (my idol!
): reading about Carew on Mike Meddings’ website, you’ll also find some of the things written by Carew and Campbell.
You’ll find a lot of details about Carew’s life, his friendship with the New Orleans ragtime greats and a lot of interesting things about ragtime in general, since Carew was very expert about this music genre.
I hope that, in spite of the rather messy post, everything is clear.
Carew has written another rag, entitled “Basin Street Stroller
”. I’ve never found that, but I imagine it must be another ragtime medley like his other pieces.
As usual, I STRONGLY recommend everybody listens to the recordings (these were taken from the Louisiana Library website).
Roy Carew was not a professional musician, but his interest in ragtime started in the early 1900s and his playing style is obviously quite influenced by the artists he met. He has possibly absorbed something of the style of Tony Jackson and he's also quite a bouncing and peppy ragtime pianist too.
I'm quite interested in including the recordings of the composers of the sheet music I'm posting to let people know how these pieces were supposed to be played.
I hear many unknow people on the internet today giving indication on how to play ragtime and on respecting the composers' intentions and they always say a lot of silly things, while they don't know and don't care at all of how ragtime was actually played then!!! And there are hundreds of recordings of the original pianists to give us a clear idea of what ragtime actually was.
I strongly recommend to people who download the sheet music but not the recordings NOT to try the pieces at all