Mumbles … Ivory

I saw the word of the day and instantly had “Ebony and Ivory” by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder in my head.  Then I thought of a picture of a keyboard with a rose across it.  “Tickling the ivories” is a phrase I have heard.  A dozen or more bands came to mind with heavy keyboard in their music.  Which lead me to one of my favorites who I was born much too late to see perform, Scott Joplin.

Scott Joplin had a short career actually, beginning with his first song published in 1895.  Four years later he would write his most well know song, the “Maple Leaf Rag” which went on to become a signature song for ragtime music.  He wrote two operas and one ragtime ballet but never saw a production of either opera as one was lost after it was confiscated for non-payment of bills in 1907 and the other was not fully staged before his death.

In 1916 his health deteriorated due to syphilis and he would later die in a mental institution in 1917.  In 1973 new generations were introduced to his music thanks to “The Entertainer” and many other songs from the movie The Sting.  He would be awarded a posthumous Pulitzer Prize in 1976.  And one year later Billy Dee Williams portrayed Joplin in a biography about his life.

So sit back and enjoy a couple of his songs.

Maple Leaf Rag

Solace (Mexican Serenade)

The Entertainer


Written for Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (FOWC) – ivory

(Information from Wikipedia)

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