Today in Music History
A Daily Look at Music History For Violin Students
A Look at What Happened on Today's Date
Long, Long Ago . . . Or Maybe Just Last Year
November 24
What Else
1757 - American composer Jacob Eckhard (Choirmaster's Book of 1809) was born.

- Debut of Berlioz's Romeo and Juliet. Presented at The Paris Conservatory.

1886 - Premiere of Brahms's Cello Sonata No. 2 in F, Op. 99, in Vienna.

- Donald "Duck" Dunn, bassist, was born.  He appeared in the movie The Blues Brothers.

1950 - Guys & Dolls opened at 46th St Theater in New York It played for 1200 performances.

1968 - Swiss violinist Alberto Bachmann died. Author of An Encyclopedia of the violin.

1973 - Former Beatle Ringo Starr went to No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Photograph'. His first U.S. chart topper as a solo artist.

- Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury died of AIDS-related pneumonia at 45
By age eleven and under the tutelage of Julius Weiss, he was learning the finer points of harmony and style.  Weiss had heard him play and was so impressed that he offered to give Scott lessons for free.  As a teenager, Scott worked as a dance musician.

When young Joplin was fourteen, he left home and began to move into the minstrel shows, vaudeville and dance halls.  He settled in St. Louis about 1890. There he studied and led in the development of a music genre now known as ragtime--a unique blend of European classical styles combined with African American harmony and rhythm.

In 1893, Joplin played in sporting areas adjacent to the Colombian Exposition in Chicago, and the following year moved to Sedalia, Missouri. From there, he toured with his eight-member Texas Medley Quartette as far east as Syracuse, New York.

In  1890s, Joplin worked at the Maple Leaf Club in Sedalia, which provided the title for his best known composition.  John Stark, a music publisher, heard the piece and bought it immediately.  The money Scott received allowe him to set himself up as a music teacher.  This permitted him more time to compose. A few years later Joplin wrote what may be his best known piece,
The Entertainer (Click to hear a midi version). Over the next fifteen years,

Joplin moved to New York City, where he devoted his energies to the production of his operatic work,
Treemonisha, the first grand opera composed by an African American. The piece never saw success during Joplin's lifetime, but it won a Pulitzer Prize in 1976.

His health deteriorated, and Scott Joplin died on April 1, 1917.

Although Joplin's music was popular during his lifetime, he did not receive the recognition he deserved.  In 1973 Joplin's music was featured in the movie, The Sting.  Interest in Joplin rose dramatically, and he received the praise he so richly deserved.
Scott Joplin
Scott Joplin, the "King of Ragtime" music, was born near Linden, Texas on November 24, 1868. His family was musical.  His father played the violin, his mother the banjo.  They moved to Texarkana when Scott was about seven.

Even at this early age, Scott had shown himself to be an extraordinary musician.  He already played the banjo, and was starting to learn the piano.
Violins Stocking
Christmas Ornaments make great gifts for your student or teacher.
Can You Guess?
Scott Joplin's music is referred to as ragtime.
Can You Guess why it is called ragtime?
Look at the bottom of the page for the answer.
Complete Scott Joplin Piano Boxed Set
Piano Rags
Joplin's Piano Music on CD
Ragtime for Violin
Sheet Music So You Can Play Music from this Genre.  REALLY FUN!
Scott Joplin: Ragtime for Violin - sheet music at
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Did You Guess?
The rhythm in ragtime music is syncopated.  That means that accents do not come on the beats you would expect them.  The people said that the rhythm was "ragged," and it was referred to as "ragged time,"  which was shortened to "ragtime."