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An Album Of Early Folk Rags
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David Thomas Roberts. An Album of Early Folk Rags. David Thomas Roberts.

One of the top ragtime composers of the post-1970 period, David Thomas Roberts' best rags approach the level of a Scott Joplin piece; among his best-known works are Roberto Clemente, Pinelands Memoir, and New Orleans Streets. Although he performs occasionally at ragtime festivals and composes for chamber orchestras, it is for his thoughtful and melodic folk rags that David Thomas Roberts is most significant. He has recorded for several labels, including Euphonic, Stomp Off, Piano Mania, and an early Jelly Roll Morton set for Mardi Gras.

David Thomas is an American singer, songwriter and musician. He was one of the founding members of the short-lived proto-punkers Rocket from the Tombs (1974–1975), in which he played under the moniker "Crocus Behemoth," and of post-punk group Pere Ubu (1975–present, intermittently). He has also released several solo albums. Though primarily a singer, he sometimes plays melodeon, trombone, guitar or other instruments.

Brun Campbell was rare among the early ragtime composers in that his piano playing was documented on albums late in his life. The Euphonic label released two LPs of Campbell performing during 1945-1949. Five decades later, David Thomas Roberts studied Campbell's music very closely and recorded The Collected Brun Campbell, a full-length CD of Campbell pieces. The one exception to the Campbell material is Scott Joplin's "Maple Leaf Rag," which is recorded in Campbell's style. In fact, the whole set sounds very much like Campbell, capturing his occasional eccentricities,.

Their third album is a snapshot of London life, from "'A' Bomb in Wardour Street" to "Down in the Tube Station at Midnight," a salvo against rightwing punkers. 23. Pere Ubu, ‘Terminal Tower’ (1985). On the Detroit band's second album (produced by Kingsmen keyboardist Don Gallucci), that meant primal garage chaos nearly a decade ahead of its time. Guitarist Ron Asheton hammered as few chords as possible (". Eye" is just one), while Iggy Pop channeled bad-trip psychedelia and metallic R&B into hormonal meltdowns that inspired generations of pent-up noise fiends.

15 Ragtime Compositions. Music for a Pretty Baby.

One such talent is David Thomas Broughton. Broughton hails from Otley in Yorkshire, an eccentric place in it own right (it is home to five active Morris dancing sides, which is impressive for a town of fewer than 14,000 inhabitants). He has lived in both North and South Korea, where he somehow managed to indulge his passion for ornithology. He plays loop pedal and a guitar, and sings. A singer of fragile folk songs and a destroyer of those very same songs. Talking heads abound. We get anecdotal insights into Broughton’s home life from various family members.

A top album by the top Scottish folk-rock band. Trees – The Garden of Jane Delawney (1970). He realized that almost certainly no one had made an album of electrified Morris dance tunes! (Morris dancing is an odd pagan holdover that was revived to an extent by hippies and is now becoming rare again) So he set about rectifying that. Morris tunes have a stately, stomping elegance and dignity that is quite different to the wild prancing of Celtic dance music like jigs and reels.

Try to imagine David Bowie’s entire career as a single line (it’s a long line). Our line follows him from song to song, album to album, through every character he’s ever created, every look he’s stumbled onto, or invented, or borrowed, every musical style he’s played.


A1 Teddy In The Jungle
A2 Pride Of The Smoky Row
A3 Missoura Mag's Chromatic Rag
A4 Mashed Potatoes
A5 Kalamity Kid
A6 X.L. Rag
A7 Texas Rag
B1 Cole Smoak
B2 Sweet Pickles
B3 Back To Life
B4 Queen Of Love
B5 Holy Moses
B6 Sponge


  • Engineer – Cecil Spiller (tracks: B1 to B6), Tom Trout (tracks: A1 to A7)
  • Piano, Liner Notes – David Thomas Roberts


Side A: Recorded June 29 - July 2, 1981 at Buechel Lounge, York College of Pennsylvania.
Side B: Recorded December 4, 1981 at Old Town Music Hall, El Sequndo, Ca.