Various Artists

Ragtime Piano Novelties of the 1920's

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Novelty ragtime was big for a few years in the 1920's. Virtuosic pianists played and occasionally recorded complex and nearly-impossible-to-perform originals that impressed listeners. This Folkways LP from 1980 contains 13 rare recordings, mostly from the 20's. None of the pianists are famous today (Willard Robison and Billy Mayerl are best-known) and, with the exception of "Pianoflage," "Nickel in the Slot" and "Nola," the tunes have been mostly forgotten. However vintage jazz and ragtime collectors will be interested in hearing these frequently exciting if mostly unknown performances.