The Banjo Rag (1909)
Last updated: 18.07.18
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Composer: E.K. Bennett Suppliers: dbe15.gif
Editor: Geoff Grainger Sextet A/T/T+D/T/B/GB(B)
Publisher: Ditty Box Enterprises Publication: DBE 1179
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Purchasing information Notice for leaders/bass players
Length: approx. 2½ mins. (or 5 mins if DC performed).
The Banjo Rag appears to have been self-published or at least copyrighted in 1909 by the composer himself before the copyright was assigned to Joseph Krolage in 1911. The front cover of the original sheet music is dominated predictably by a banjo being eyed with pure delight by a hideous caricature of an Afro-American. The two-step itself is a fine rippling, mesmerising affair characterised by long passages of dotted sixteenths in AABBACCDDAA form with a 4-bar introduction which doubles as a coda whereby the AB- and CD-strains are written in the keys of C and F respectively. The final bar of the final A-strain is scored DC suggesting that composer intended a Perpetuum Mobile á la Strauss the Younger. Here the strain lengths are all of an unusual 8-bars. In this adaptation for recorder sextet the melodies are shared by the treble 1st tenor voices. The 2nd tenor has the unusual but pleasurable task of alternating to descant for his/her place in the limelight. All-in-all a minor gem to warm the cockles of performers and audiences alike!
The Banjo Rag was published by Joseph Krolage Music Co., Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.
A tempo of 80 crotchets/min. is suggested.