Various Artists

Early Ragtime Piano

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Unfortunately not much ragtime was recorded by solo pianists during the style's most popular years and Scott Joplin never made a record. This interesting Folkways LP does have 16 solos from the teens and 1920's, mostly obscurities other than examples of Jelly Roll Morton and James P. Johnson. Of greatest interest are Mike Bernard's "1915 Rag," and examples of the work of Willie Eckstine, Harry Thomas ("Delirious Rag") and Frank Westphal ("Pianola"). The recording dates are only given in a few cases and the programming jumps around chronologically; hopefully this important music will someday be reissued by Folkways on CD in more coherent and complete fashion.