Saturday, June 4, 2016

Sedalia MO Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival: Day 2

Day two of the Sedalia Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival has come and gone and, as with most day twos, some of the glow wears off and you begin to discover little irritations. Our room at the Bothwell is a wonderful example of the expectations of the 20’s traveler, but it’s also a reminder I’m not a 20’s traveler. For one, the bed has proven to be the equivalent of sleeping on one of those bags stuntmen fall into when diving from the top of a building. For travel-weary, aching backs it’s less than ideal. So, today my post will be short, since I’m nearly falling asleep on the keyboard, I just hope the lousy internet connection uploads this in less than an hour.

This morning we went to a seminar entitled The Ragtime Life where ragtime master Max Morath. Max may be familiar, he’s been banging the ivories longer than I’ve been alive and worked with the great Eubie Blake, wrote and starred in the PBS American Experience series, and if none of that rings any bells he did play piano on one show of someone you might know – one Captain Kangaroo. His description of what it meant to be there when ragtime went from being “old timey music” nobody listened to, to the soundtrack of The Sting was really eye opening. I thought being a musician was something that just happened, an outgrowth of being really talented and driven, but there is a lot of compromise and plenty of trials along the way.

Next I got to watch Kelly and Bob interviewed about their experience at the first Joplin-fest back in 1974. Nice playing paparazzi for that event, it was fun to listen to both of them talk through their part at the beginning of this festival.

Well, now it’s off to bed. Tomorrow is our day away from seminars. We’re heading to Bothwell Lodge for a tour of the mansion and a little hiking to compensate for the cookies and barbecue we’ve been indulging in over this week.

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