Africa in Scott Joplin's Music
Last updated: 06.08.17
Paperback, 29 pages, (January 1996) Usually ships within 2-3 days.
Butch Thompson of "Lake Woebegone" fame, from The Mississippi Rag
"...Lems-Dworkin presents a thoroughly researched and tightly argued case, along the way redefining the "Scotch Snap," the rhythmic device often cited as the backbone of ragtime and Afro-American music in general, and clarifying certain misconceptions about African music which might have led to confusion in analyzing its influence on Joplin The overview of African music is well-sumarized and convincing, and there is a definitive discussion of the idea of "syncopation" a term irrelevant to African music, as Lems-Dworkin shows as it has been applied to ragtime..."
The first serious study of the numerous African influences on the music of Scott Joplin, "King of Ragtime." A 29-page probing essay with charts and illustrations that focus on "Africanisms" in Joplin's music that have been largely ignored to date. The author states that despite European influences, the music is still essentially "Black" in character, and gives many examples to demonstrate this. Rhythm is but one of the African elements treated.