Sunday, May 18, 2008

Welcome to Ragtime Piano!

Welcome to my blog, Ragtime Piano! I will soon add more details and graphics to this site as I move ahead. I have been playing the piano since I was seven but over my adult years it has been an off and on affair with my piano playing (due to having a crappy piano) and other interests that have gotten in the way of my playing ragtime. Right now, I have a slightly "better" piano (still crappy, tho) and I have gone back to playing ragtime piano 2 to 3 hours a day and re-memorize the many of my Scott Joplin favorites and other ragtime pieces.

Just to let you I'm not your typical ragtime pianist. You see, I have a hearing loss (moderate-severe) ever since birth and I wear a hearing aid in my right ear while my left ear is basically no good. Despite that I seem to be one of the very few, if any, deaf ragtime player and through this blog I will make an effort to make myself known as one. Though I have played at a few public events in the past I plan to make myself available to the public once again. Currently I am playing and memorizing a popular ragtime piece called "Black and White" by George Botsford (1908). Listen to the piece here. Or review the entire music sheet in electronic format for your perusal. I am also in the process of playing Jelly Roll Morton's "Finger Buster" which is an extremely fast Jazz piece but that one will take awhile while I get my piano playing affairs in order and to speed but first it's the "Black and White" piece and others I'd like to get a hands on such as "Dizzy Fingers" by Zez Confrey.

I expect to make videos of myself playing some of these pieces as a way to keep myself enthused and motivated. Meanwhile you can help me out in my quest to improve my ragtime repetroire and goal to attend a Ragtime festival and get a better piano by going to my Cafepress store "Deaf Ragtime" and order one of the many ragtime products. In fact, the button you see at the top is one of the many ragtime products you can buy.

So, now it comes down to this. If a deaf or hard of hearing person like me can play ragtime piano, so can you! Even if you're not deaf.

UPDATE: Here's a YouTube version of "Black and White Rag" by Marty Mincer, ragtime pianist. This is what I'm working on just recently and I'm doing well so far. Just to give you an idea what the finger action looks like for those who want to see the piano playing visually.

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