This CD presents American dance tunes that came to Britain as well as some tunes from England and Scotland that in their rhythmic quality seem to pre-figure ragtime music. The unifying theme of this CD is syncopation, the significant characteristic of Ragtime. Ragtime came to public notice in the 1890s in America and, within months, Europe, too, fell under its spell. There were none of today’s mass media methods of communicating music yet it spread like wildfire. As shown by the tunes in this collection, syncopation had existed in traditional tunes since at least the eighteenth century.
Dr Vic Gammon recently retired from being Senior Lecturer in Folk and Traditional Music, but continues to be a guest member of staff at Newcastle University. On the CD Vic plays concertina, tenor banjo and mandolin. His ‘friends’ include concertina player, Sandra Kerr (of “Bagpuss” fame), noted fiddle player Stewart Hardy, flautist Desi Wilkinson from the Irish band ‘Cran’, BBC Folk Award nominee, Dan Walsh on 5-string banjo and harmonica player, Steve Harrison.