Darktown Is Out To-Night

Black

Darktown Is Out To-Night

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Title: Darktown Is Out To-Night, Composed By: Will. Marion, Published By: M. Witmark & Sons, Location: New York/Chicago, Year: 1899

William Mercer Cook (January 27, 1869 – July 19, 1944), better known as Will Marion Cook, was an African-American composer and violinist from the United States. Cook was a student of Antonín Dvořák and performed for King George V among others. He is probably best known for his popular songs and Broadway musicals, such as Clorindy, or The Origin of the Cake Walk and In Dahomey

Witmark & Sons was a leading publisher of sheet music for the United States “Tin Pan Alley” music industry.

The firm of Marcus Witmark & Sons was established in New York City in 1886. The father, Marcus Witmark, was the legal head of the company; but from the beginning it was run by his sons Isidore, Julius, and Jay, who were under legal age when the company started (ranging in age from 17 to 14 years old). They started out publishing their own compositions. They were adept at plugging songs, and within a few years were publishing the works of such composers as Victor Herbert, George M. Cohan, Ben Harney and John Walter Bratton.

Witmark originated the practice of giving free “professional copies” of their new music to famous and established singers and bands, which proved so successful an advertising method that it was copied by the rest of the music publishers.

When the International Copyright Law was passed in 1891, Witmark pioneered publishing versions of British music in the United States and arranging for American hits to be published in the UK.


My Old Plantation Home

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Title: My Old Plantation Home, Composed By: Richard Winternitz, Published By: Leo Feist, Location: New York, Year: 1907

Leopold Feist (1 March 1869 New York City – 21 June 1930 Mount Vernon, New York) founded and ran a music publishing firm bearing his name that — in the 1920s, at the height of the golden age of popular music — was among the seven largest publishers of popular music in the World.


The Slave Chase

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Title: The Slave Chase, Composed By: Henry Russell, Published By: Oliver Ditson & Co., Location: Boston, Year: 1845

“Set ev’ry stitch of canvas to woo the fresh’ning wind,
Oar bowsprit points to Cuba, the coast lies far behind ;
Fill’d to the hatches full, my boys, across the seas we go,
There’s twice five hundred niggers in the stifling hold below.
A sail ! what say you, boys ? well—let him give us chase !
A British Man-of-War, you say—well, let him try the race,
There’s not two swifter vessels ever floated on the waves,
Than our tidy little Schooners, well ballasted with slaves.”

Now stronger yet, and stronger still, came down the fiery breeze,
And even fast and faster sped the strange ship on the seas ;
Flinging each rude and bursting surge in glitt’ring halos back,
And bearing high to heav’n aloft, the English Union Jack,
” Now curses on that Ensign,” the slaving captain said,
” There’s little luck for slaves when English hunting’s spread.
But pack on sail, and trim, the ship, before we’ll captur’d be,
We’ll have the niggers up, my boys, and heave them in the sea.”

Hoarse was the slaving captain’s voice, and deep the oath he swore,
Haul down the flag, that shot’s enough, we don’t want any more.”
Along side dash’d that cruiser’s boat, to board and seize the prize ;
Hark ! to that rattling British cheer, that’s ringing to the skies,
” Up, up, with the negroes speed’ly, up, up, and give them breath ;
Clear out the hold from stem to stern, that noisome den is death.
And run aloft St. George’s Cross, all wanton let it wave,
The token proud that under it there never treads a slave.”


Who Is De Coon

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Title: Who Is De Coon, Word and Music By: A.W. Jarvis, Published By: A.W. Jarvis, Location: Norwich CONN, Year: 1900


Ma Man Is A Dandy Coon

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Title: Ma Man Is A Dandy Coon, Words By: Robert B. Smith, Music By: H.T. MacConnell, Published By: M. Witmark & Sons, Location: New York/Chicago, Year: 1900  

M. Witmark & Sons was a leading publisher of sheet music for the United States “Tin Pan Alley” music industry.


Old Black Joe

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Title: Old Black Joe, Music By: L.E. West, Published By: L.E. West Pub. Co., Location: Rick Island ILL, Year: 1900


Fun On The Levee

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Title: Fun On The Levee, Composed By: Charles L. Johnson, Published By: Forster Music Publisher Inc., Location: Chicago, Year: 1917

 


Halifax Rag

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Title: Halifax Rag, Music By: H.D. Carter, Arranged By: Cyrus S. Mallard, Published By: C.C. Cocroft Music Co., Location: Thomasville GA, Year: 1910

 


Ma Curly-Headed Babby

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Title: Ma Curly-Headed Babby, Composed By: G.H. Clutsam, Published By: Edwin Ashdown, Location: London, Year: 1897

George Howard Clutsam (26 September 1866 – 17 November 1951) was an Australian pianist, composer and writer, best remembered as the arranger of Lilac Time. Clutsam published over 150 songs.

 


I Want A Real Coon

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Title: I Want A Real Coon, Words By: Arthur J. Lamb, Music By: Bernard Adler, Published By: Windsor Music Co., Location: Chicago/New York, Year: 1898

Dar’s a good-for-nuthin’ ragged coon comes ‘roun’ a-courtin’ me.
And I’m ‘most ashamed he has the cheek to call:
‘Cos’ he tries to put on heaps of style when he’s a sight to see,
He’s got nuthin’ to his name, but lots of gall.
I’ve a told him he will never do, he am not good enough.
I’ve a-told him he’s a would-be, nuthin’ more,
An’ he knows I’m on to him, ‘cos’ he can’t get in the swim,
And dar’s many a time I’ve told him at de door:

Chorus.
I want a real coon, handsome, genteel coon,
Coon like my own relations, I don’t want no imitations,
Some coon dat’s haughty, swell dressed and sporty,
A real coon dis gal am waitin’ for.

Now I wants to have a real coon like the swell coons that I see,
I’ve a-seen ’em at the theatre all life long;
They will dance around upon the stage with clothes ‘way up in O,
An’ they take me clear to heaben with a song.
But the coons aroun’ my neighborhood, they don’t dress up a bit.
Oh, compared to dem stage folks the rest are jays;
So I’m willin’, eb’ry time, to give up my little dime,
Jes’ to watch the real coon with his winnin’ ways.-Chorus.


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About The Curator

Carol Seelig Eastman is the Executive Director and Chief Curator of The Knohl Collection. In this role, she passionately explores the artist’s personal, social, and political world and places their art in a meaningful historical context. Her thematic exhibitions provide visual and educational stimulation that attract and engage a diverse museum audience.