Joe Jordan (1882-1971) is the musician who most directly links authentic African-American ragtime with the Golden Age of the American musical theater. An artist of great versatility--he was a gifted pianist, composer, songwriter, arranger, conductor, organizer, promoter, and educator--Jordan was also remarkable for his extraordinary successes in an era of appalling racial discrimination. Threads of his long and fascinating career intertwined and intersected with historical figures as diverse as Fanny Brice, Scott Joplin, Orson Welles, James P. Johnson, Florenz Ziegfeld, "Fats" Waller, W.C. Handy, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, Williams & Walker, Ethel Merman, Cole & Johnson, Ginger Rogers, Ernest Hogan, Will Marion Cook, Tom Turpin, and a host of others. Although he had little formal musical training, Joe Jordan composed, orchestrated, and conducted dozens of important musical productions in Chicago and New York, and wrote more than six hundred songs, several of them nationwide hits. He was also a businessman of such keen ability that by the late 1910s he had become one of the wealthiest blacks in the nation. Yet, with the passage of time, awareness of Joe Jordan's music and career has faded. But a study of his rich creative legacy reveals much of importance to current and future generations. It is time for Joe Jordan's amazing story--and music--to be heard once again.
This well-chosen anthology of twenty songs, the first-ever comprehensive survey of Jordan's remarkable output, features several of his most popular hits, including "Lovie Joe," the song that made Fanny Brice a star. The stylish and vital performances are the fruit of exhaustive research by Rick Benjamin and bring this music vividly to life again for today's listeners and scholars of early American popular music and culture.
Double Fudge (ragtime two step, 1902), Nappy Lee (slow drag, 1903), Lovie Joe (from the Follies of 1910), The Darkey Todalo: A Raggedy Rag (1910), Take Your Time (comic song, 1905/1907), J.J.J. Rag (1905), I Am Waiting For You, Honey Dear (waltz song, 1914), The Whippoorwill Dance (c.1921), Dat's Ma Honey Sho's Yo' Born (comic song, 1912), That Teasin' Rag (1909), Brother-N-Law Dan: A Sequel to "Lovie Joe" (1922), Pekin Rag - Intermezzo (1904), He's Coming Back!: Teddy Roosevelt's "Bull Moose" Song (1912), Bouclaire Waltzes (1904), The Morocco Blues (1922/1926), Sweetie Dear Fox Trot (1914), Sweetie Dear: An Afro-American Serenade (1906), Happiness (song, 1918), The Century March (1902), Tango Two Step (1912)
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