RagPiano.com - Ragtime and Old-Time Resource Links
This is an ever-changing,
but only partial list of known and recommended links available on the web for those who are interested in Ragtime/Old-Time Music, Traditional Jazz, Sheet Music, obtaining music, MIDI files, MIDI help, useful software for graphics or music, and other categories that in some way relate either to the content of my site or creation of that content. If you can recommend a related link or resource, please feel free to submit it to me via e-mail at
As you look through these pages, please keep in mind that a great deal of work has gone into not only what I do, but what many of the other listed artists have contributed to ragtime performance and the advancement of the knowledge of this indigenous American music. With that in mind, know that your input is invaluable to any of us. Also, know that your patronage of any of us that have recordings or music for sale well help perpetuate future high-quality reference sources.
Individual Ragtime Artists and Old-Time Music Sites
Lots of fabulous live MIDI files, great recordings for sale, and a great musicians resource list, all by a good musical friend of mine, Sue Keller-Vigorita!
The "Perfessor" knew Brian Holland back when he was barely of legal age, and before he started playing better than most of us and won the Old-Time Piano Championship three times straight! He and Danny Coots and friends provide some great entertainment and CDs to boot. Check them out.
Jeff Barnhart, along with his talented wife Anne, have played ragtime and related forms with everybody all around the world. He has a remarkable legacy of recordings and a busy calendar, all available from this web site. Proud to call him friend and even sometimes duet partner.
Adam G. Swanson
Having known Adam for more than half his life, I can tell you that he has been and continues to be the future of ragtime and related music forms. There is a lot to find out about him, his recordings, future appearances, and more.
The pride of Canadians everywhere, especially those in Canada, this enormously talented pianist and composer from Prince Edward Island has been said to play "face melting" ragtime piano and novelties. Keep following him, because this friend of Bill's has been going somewhere for a while now.
A close friend of the "Perfessor", Marty has a command of the piano that equals his wry and corny sense of humor. Marty says he likes being a farmer because he is out-standing in his field. *flinch* Anyhow, he is still an active Iowa apple farmer with a keen interest in American Musical Heritage.
A friend of the "Perfessor" and an absolutely brilliant and charming interpreter of novelty and 1920s/1930s piano, as well as on silent movie soundtracks both live on and digital media. If you can't hear him in person, this is a good start.
A great ragtime stage performer and friend of the "Perfessor" who is particularly adept in Boogie, Boogie-Woogie and blues music. Great story teller as well, as his books are full of wonderful anecdotes.
David has been involved with ragtime from the get-go, and was present for the famous Red Back Book recordings by the New England Conservatory Ragtime Ensemble in the early 1970s, as well as virtually every Scott Joplin festival. A talented violinist and long-time radio host in San Francisco, he has accrued an impressive knowledge base of ragtime recordings, anecdotes, and more. Quite a bit of his history is available on this site, and is worth perusing.
Mimi is a classical Canadian pianist who caught the ragtime bug and has not been able to shake it (thankfully). Her phenomenal interpretations garner well earned attention everywhere she performs, and she is the foremost authority on Canadian ragtime figures, including Jean-Baptiste Lafrenière, whom she has been said to resemble on certain occasions!
The venerable and talented David Thomas Roberts has many delights on his finely crafted site, including folios and CDs of his music, samples of his poetry, photography, and a number of pieces of his art - a veritable journey into his world of Terra Verde ragtime and art. For many who have searched for years for his folios outside of ragtime festivals, this is your source.
One of the finest researchers in ragtime on the web and in the world, as well as the utmost Joplin authority, you can view his writings and obtain his research books here as well.
Specializing in rags by women composers, this Missouri artist researches and performs ragtime works by women, and has folios of these rags available as well.
Interesting repertoire and interpretation with other artists featured as well on a ragtime site meant to delight. Other neat stuff for your computer is there as well, including great piano sampling designed to improve your sound card's performance, and now piano roll scans as well.
Ted Tjaden has assembled this site focused in part on his native Canada and on the music in general. Includes many scanned images of original sheet music and links to many more, plus excellent articles and information on rags, genres, composers, etc.
Swedish ragtime enthusiast Oleg Mezjuev host some information and recordings of rags from Sweden and around the world, some that are not typically heard anywhere else.
A variety of musical works is constantly being added to this site, which originally focused largely on the sometimes overlooked works of Victor Herbert, composer of Babes in Toyland among other early musicals, and has been widely expanded to a wide variety of old-time related music.
A site dedicated to Ragtime and Early American Music featuring rag icon Johnny Maddox, whom I have had the pleasure to know, and who has been an inspiration to me for a great deal of my career, as well as Adam Swanson and countless others.
We lost the artist, John Roache, in 1999, but we did not lose his artistry. There are carefully crafted recreations of artists, and many original interpretations. These are among the most talked about MIDI recordings ever produced.
Colin MacDonald, a West Coast enthusiast and ragtime contributer, departed this world in March of 2008, but through this site his legacy remains. Very informative layout, complete with some downloadable scores and analysis of the pieces and their edited performances, this is a very good source for further interactive ragtime education from an individual with a true passion for the music. Fine work also by his editor Greenfield Bowie.
The late Mike Meddings, one of our friends in the U.K., with lots of ragtime music and extensive information updated frequently, featuring "Jelly Roll" Morton, J. Lawrence Cook, and Eubie Blake.
A large collection of mostly ragtime and old-time MIDI files, some with explanatory text, by the "Perfessor" and many other artists listed herein. Days of listening pleasure.
The real French Connection for a European view of ragtime, the site is presented in both Francais and English (click on the Union Jack) by dedicated young organist/pianist Benjamin Intartaglia. Don't miss his Who Am I Link which when read will make the visit even more meaningful.
Translated into English it means Art of the Fugue. This European site has lots of MIDI files in various genres, including a page of ragtime from the European perspective. Hours of listening fun.
Good variety and some unusual choices not usually heard appear on this simple yet very worthy site. MIDI files, some with brief explanations.
A ragtime veteran with his own unique performance style, he features many of his own compositions (published in folios) and some poetry to boot.
This unique group starts where the famous Six Brown Brothers left off, bringing exciting piano ragtime renditions to listeners via saxophones, with all the fun of their predecessors and more. Some exciting CDs there, plus word on appearances.
Primarily a wonderful spectrum of old-time songs, it is a sing-along site with good MIDIs and MP3s, plus some interesting info and even more sheet music covers to admire.
Dedicated to the covers (and in some cases the music) of the great publisher of Marches and thematic pieces from Joe Feenstra's collection.
A great collection by artist Benjamin Tubb focusing on mid to late 19th century American works by Stephen Foster, George Root, Henry Clay and others.
Other Ragtime and Old-Time Music Sites/Archives
A huge inventory of covers for display in varying categories, mostly from the 1820s to 1922, and many with downloadable images of the music as well. Recently underwent a major upgrade including better presentation, larger images and PDFs for many pieces. This is the original on-line archive, and still one of the best historically.
Duke University has a nice inventory of selected sheet music categorized by decades from the 1850's to the 1920's, with images of the covers, music, and ads in various sizes for viewing or downloading.
A fine collection of music associated with Colorado and a great selection Ragtime sheet images. Includes some Euday Bowman originals.
This is a vast multi-library resource that covers parts of Indiana University not seen in their standard collection, and takes in Indiana Historical Society and other libraries as well. Good for research, even though not all sheets have associated images.
This site, home of the Charles H. Templeton Sr. Music Museum, has grown incredibly since it was launched, with more to come. Beautiful design, and lots of ragtime goodies. The basic search engine works well, but the advanced search could use some work. There are additional helpful resources on the site, which Charles Templeton Jr. assures me is one of his priorities and clearly the pride and joy of his late father.
This fine collection has become quite expansive with many items found here that aren't elsewhere. Very good source for items that were included in early stage musicals, and nice resource for research as well.
An exciting addition to the many on-line archives, there are some very unique items that are to be found in this collection. The single drop-down title page is a bit more difficult to navigate, so the browse by composer pages (linked to here) are recommended. Just select Music from the list and Go.
A large multi-tiered archive with some standards as well as four to eight hand arrangements, hosted by the University of Maine libraries. There are several ways to search, and good keyword use or filtering by years are recommended to minimize results.
Baylor University has one of the newer web-based collections available, which is fun and worthwhile to browse through for researchers or casual users. Many of the sheets are in digital printable format.
Presented with the Detroit Public Library, this important collection includes full scans of many pieces of African-American music or that with Negro Themes, and is invaluable for research on composers like Fred S. Stone, Eubie Blake or Bert Williams among others.
This collection lives at the University of South Florida. It is a great reference for years of publication and publishers, as well as composers.
While mostly not available due to copyright restrictions on many of the items, this collection still has some very unusual items that make it a great research tool, or perhaps confirmation for the existence of rare pieces. UNT also houses the great Stan Kenton library. Keep refreshing since this one times out after a few minutes.
A nicely organized and visually rich archive of African-American based music from 1850 to 1920, and worth a lengthy browse into its treasures.
A substantial cache of nearly 20,000 scanned sheets dating back to the 1850s, as collected by Howard W. Wildin. Hard to browse through because of the size, so be prepared to either search or spend a long time browsing.
The Cleveland Library Consortium is a good reference point for Ohio ragtime and beyond, and is involved with exchange or temporary lending programs with most U.S. libraries. So what you find here can often be borrowed or copied for research.
A well categorized collection acquired by the Smithsonian Institution, this focus largely on the images and how they reflect the American way of life. Images are few, but can be viewed at the American History Museum in Washington, D.C.
A sizeable collection of over 7,000 music sheets, with many unusual ones tied to California history along with the expected fare found in many piano benches. Well-scanned and documented.
Great reference site for listings recordings of ragtime and other music as well as research on composers and what they wrote. Scores can be made available through local college/university library lending programs.
Over a century of sheet music and some extraordinary engraved and lithographed covers mixed in with the usual expected content found on archive sites.
The Library of Congress section devoted entirely to ragtime. You'll find rarities by many composers including original transcriptions easily downloaded for your perusal.
One of the better references, albeit without on-line images at this time, of works published in and around Kansas City, including a lot of Charles L. Johnson pieces and items from the Jenkins and Hoffman catalogs. This makes for a fair research site on Missouri composers.
This school hosts the small but interesting Alvah Sulloway Sheet Music and Theater Program collection that goes beyond the ragtime era, focused in some respects on theater. Another good research tool with the occasional rare find, particularly in some of the programs.
Ragtime and other music from Down Under. This is an interesting resource that features not only music unique to Australia, but many imports from the U.S. and elsewhere as well. Search on "Rag" or specific composers or titles.
There are a surprising amount of great resources and references that include sheet music in this library archive, worth a look when trying to search for more information on any particular composer.
Ted Tjaden has assembled this site focused in part on his native Canada and on the music in general. Includes many scanned images of original sheet music and links to many more, plus excellent articles and information on rags, genres, composers, etc.
Covers and accompanying MIDI sequences for music from the 1800's to the 1940's. A very well balanced and represented collection with a good archive.
Dedicated to most facets of the life of the "World's Greatest Entertainer". Entertaining in itself, and a very insightful look into a complex life.
Ragtime and Old-Time Music Organization Sites
Held each Memorial Day weekend in Peoria (formerly in Decatur), Illinois, since 1975, this is a great gathering of both seasoned and budding ragtime and old-time pianists. The Memorial Day Weekend 2015 contest will be the 41st annual (and sadly, possibly the last).
Interested in not only preserving quality music but representing it through quality performances. A great organization to be involved with for listeners and performers alike, and one the "Perfessor" regularly partakes in.
KGNU Ragtime Radio Host Jack Rummel has been reviewing ragtime recordings in print for over two decades. Now he thankfully contributes to the web on his review site, which also includes links to his weekly radio shows.
Based in Sedalia, Missouri, home of the Maple Leaf Rag and other great ragtime compositions, their yearly Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival is held in early June, with top-notch ragtime players from all over the world in attendance, and the ragtime store both in Sedalia and on-line is open all year. Seminars, concerts, history, and nostalgia are all integral parts of this festival which can always use more support and interest!
Traditional Jazz is a direct descendant of Ragtime. This organization both lists and hosts events year-round where exciting instrumental traditional jazz is performed.
Established in 1975 in Germany and led for most of its life by Klaus Pehl, this group is one of the great instrumental ragtime forces in Europe, and has hosted many great players from all over the world. An informative site, it also includes downloads of band arrangements, including Standard High Class Rags, long known as the Red Back Book. CDs for sale as well.
This Ragtime organization hosts the annual West Coast Ragtime Festival in Sacramento, California. In addition to providing extensive information on the Festival, their site also provides lists of Ragtime event calendars, performers, vendors, organizations, publications, and MIDI sites, especially ragtime-based ones. Obviously a destination for those who love the music.
All things concerning Traditional Jazz, the immediate child of ragtime, can be found here along with many sound files and related links.
Information and news on the Traditional Jazz scene in the U.K., focused on the NorthWest, along with a calendar and mentions of groups elsewhere as well.
Members of this ring are selected for their dedication to the preservation of Scott Joplin's music and ragtime in general. All of these links are highly recommended for those with casual to intense interests in the music.
Automatic Musical Instrument Related Sites
Hosted by noted piano technician and historian Art Reblitz, this site not only features his marvelous and detailed book on mechanical music instruments, but has many articles on the history of such machines and the companies that built them, along with other highly useful information and links related to the topic.
The oldest remaining piano roll provider also offers many new technologies to enhance old players, create new ones from ordinary pianos, and many types of MIDI interfaces, along with a fabulous selection of piano rolls, PianoMation discs, tuning supplies, roll cabinets, piano lights and useful accessories for any piano owner.
Douglas Henderson has lovingly recreated or restored a number of piano rolls for reproducing and standard action players, along with some newer interpretations of older pieces. His recording techniques will bring new life to your Duo-Art or Ampico, or provide added fun for any player piano. The site also features the Pianola News.
Hosted by Bob Billings, this site features the late John Farrell's piano roll transcriptions of great stride solos and some MIDI files of the rolls as well. There are more rolls by other artists, great for any player piano or stride enthusiast.
Hosted by young enthusiast and band organ expert Mikey Mills, this site has recordings, videos, photographs and event information on various types of restored mechanical music devices.
Multi-tune roll reproductions for a variety of automatic musical instruments, including information on manufacturing, and CD recordings of some rolls.
A delightful tour of the instruments restored by Swiss collector Hanspeter Kyburz with good information and many fine pictures of unusual devices.
Lots of information and images of a variety of self-playing musical instruments. A good site for whetting one's interest in the topic.
Bringing new life to piano rolls and making them available to people who mysteriously don't have player pianos already is what Warren is doing for the world. Lots to listen to, and constantly growing.
Full of pictures of player pianos and orchestrions, streaming video, MP3 audios, and MIDI files, this is a mechanical music paradise that will take some time to go through.
Classic piano rolls and some newer interpretations, focusing mostly on the genre of blues piano and ragtime. Includes Ampico, Duo-Art and Welte (Licensee) rolls.
Musical Box Society International is a haven for those interested in all manners of mechanical music, of which music boxes are among the earliest forms. Lots to see there.
A moderated digest for owners or lovers or mechanical music devices. Several pages of images, links to other mechanical music sites, and lots of information on the topic.
Started by Arnold S. Caplin and in part by long-time piano roll aficionado Mike Montgomery, this now mostly deprecated label features a number of fabulous piano roll recordings and restorations from the Ragtime and Jazz eras. Some titles still available through this link at Oldies.com!
The best resource for information on Victor Victrolas, the phonographs built by Victor with internal horns. There are links to many other resources as well.
A variety of informative articles and other goodies all related to antique phonographs of all varieties. An auction area is included for collectors.
Dedicated to the preservation of early recorded sounds, you can listen to streamed recordings and there are many CDs of material available.
Lots of information on Edison's role in the development of both Cylinder and Disc phonographs, including an article on Diamond Discs and some sound recordings.
This organization's site has good information about your piano, the piano tuning/building industry in general, and links to various piano competitions.
Commercial Music Resource Sites
This well-known stop is a good source for much of the ragtime and traditional jazz currently in print, as well as lots of used material that is hard to find. Search on Ragtime Music
Dover has the best of the best of ragtime folios as well as many other genres and categories of historical interest. Search on ragtime or follow the music links.
Owned and operated by delightful pianist and Bill's good friend Richard Dowling, this store is a one-stop shop for virtually any of your sheet music or folio needs, be they classical, ragtime, or instructional. Many other fascinating items to be found here as well. Highly recommended, and reliable.
This on-line store has a large selection of ragtime music in both print and downloadable forms. From the following link you can see their Ragtime and Jazz/Blues Sheet Music
Fairly good selection, although some of the better known Dover editions are buried, and the searches are not as focused as may be desirable within such a limited spectrum. Worth a look, though.
A European site with digital scores requiring Scorch. Some of the scores they are charging for ($5.79 for Maple Leaf Rag?) are actually available for free from on-line archives, but some arrangements of rags are also accessible to less-skilled players.
This site has a good-sized selection of some music that is hard to locate in other places. You will have to do some mining to find what you are looking for, but you may turn up som gems.
A general purpose resource website related to piano performance, sheet music, information, and 300+ year history of the beloved instrument.
This site vast resource of MIDI creation software and equipment, pre-recorded MIDI files, a large inventory of music books, and much more.
This site allows you to download selected scores to your computer for printing. Covers everything from classical to current styles, including ragtime and jazz, for a variety of instruments as well, and sometimes in a requested key.
Within is one of the best online music stores (formerly Sunhawk.com), covering all styles of music, including many titles in the ragtime/old-time genre with legal digital downloads that you can print directly. This includes virtually all of the works by Scott Joplin. Search on "ragtime" or by title or composer. Many include MIDI files and can be transposed quickly, plus some have tab and/or chords.
This company specializes in hard to find or out of print books. Search on Ragtime or the specific book title. Since many of these books are rare but in good condition, expect to pay a premium for ownership.
Records you want? Records they got. CDs, Sheet Music and other items also. Multiple levels of search, ratings of merchants, and more. The "Perfessor" is also listed on GEMM.
A combination of sources combined into one location, you can search on multiple categories, including rag, and purchase scores for piano or more instruments, many from eBay buy-it-now links. At the very least, it can fast-track some of your searches for many items.
General Musician Resources
Everything you need to know about US and International copyright law, how it pertains to Public Domain, what Public Domain is and how it affects musicians and entertainers, and a partial listing of pieces that are currently in the Public Domain.
This is a finely distilled down essay on the essentials of music and the current copyright laws, as well as some former ones. There is also useful information on publishing and the business side of music.
Simply the largest resource for musical instruments at reasonable prices and reliable delivery that the "Perfessor" has found and frequented. A large spectrum of items, including recording studio equipment, and frequent "scratch and dent" sales.
A large selection of new and refurbished guitars, including many folk and small-sized models, plus banjos, non-traditional percussion instruments and CDs to boot. Great resource for old-time music lovers.
First rate company that provides bulk blank media of all kinds, cases, business card CDs, and replication services with printing. Highly recommended for reliability and fast service.
An excellent source for recordable CDs and DVDs of all varieties and sizes, jewel cases, MiniDiscs, and related production supplies.
A wonderful supplier of high quality blank cassettes, with tape and CD production/duplication services, quick turnaround, and lower prices than a lot of local and national firms.
Resource site with labels and labeling systems for CDs, DATs, MiniDiscs, and more. Highly recommended for ease of use and appearance.
Other Interesting and Somewhat Related Sites
The web version of the popular television show which covers, among other things, items of cultural value related to the ragtime era. The link here goes to an article on vintage sheet music. Subscription required for some features.
Where did New Yorkers and visitors to the not-quite-so-big apple go for fun during the ragtime era? The answers are in this fascinating site on America's first true amusement area, which is pure fun. Don't knock it Tilyou try it. Sheer Luna-cy.