Sunday, July 20, 2008

Quincy 78 Haul

Last week I brought Chalfen some 78s that washed up in a Quincy yard sale (thanks for the tip Franc). His first e-mail after the fact concluded "thanx for the wild-ass stash of wax obscuranta; i hope you realize you've revolutionized the field of Boston proto-jass". Wha?
His latest continues...
"dr. so far no mention of The Ormsby Disc or Boston Talking Machine Exchange,
but both songs are dated 1904 and by known ragtime era composers:
Make A Fuss Over Me
Music: Theodore f. Morse
Words: Edw. Madden
Madden was later busted for a 'song-poem' scam where submitted 'lyrics' were added to music, for a price - there's a whole website dedicated to the form
"What's the Matter With the Mail?"
Music: Percy Wenrich
Words: Fred J. Hamill (also the publisher)
Wenrich was known as 'the Ragtime Kid' and wrote Put On Your Old Grey Bonnet and other hits. so far no boston connection to either tune or composer."

Mysterious. Boston. Ragtime??

ormsby 1520 what's the matter with the mail
ormsby 1507 make a fuss over me

He's referring to this rather mysterious pair of 78's that turned up at a garage sale in Quincy. The elderly gentleman having it was some kind of collector finally ridding himself of the detritus of his career. Of course, I asked if he had any records. After producing a smattering of random rock 45"s, I asked if he had any older records. "You mean 78's? Someone took a hundred yesterday." Not expecting to find anything left, I had to give one look and found an apparently untouched stash in the garage, well out of reach. These (apparently) rare discs contain Ragtime from Boston in the (last) oughts. More on this one as it emerges. For now, check the audio (click the records above) and the pics from the night we first heard them.

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