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Publications and Pieces from the E.T. Paull Catalog
Edward Taylor Paull
started out as fledgling piano store manager and amateur composer until he hit upon a formula in the mid-1890s that launched him to success. It started with his first published march, The Chariot Race
, a.k.a. Ben Hur March
. His thought was to grab the potential pianist or listener's attention before they even heard the piece. This was accomplished through the process of some extraordinary cover art, sometimes suggested or designed by Paull, and printed with an expensive five-color lithograph process utilized primarily by the
A. Hoen Company
printing firm in Richmond, VA. The names of many of the lithograph artists have been obfuscated by that of the firm. The process involves creating grooved stone faces in which the desired portion to be printed must be represented in relief. There were four or five stones for each cover, depending on color depth; one for each primary color, and one for black. That these artists made all of these stones overlay to create a single multi-color picture is a testament to their amazing skill. New York lithographer
Joseph E. Rosenthal
also contributed a fine cache of covers to Paull publications during the late 1890s.
The topics Paull chose for his own pieces, or from among many submissions sent to him, most often centered on disasters, wars, victory, or exciting activities. They lent themselves to the public's desire for the spectacular, celebratory or the profound. Many of the marches were very descriptive, often including text queues entailing what each section of the piece was intended to represent in terms of action or exposition. This may have been more for the amusement of the pianist than the listener, unless there was someone to announce the action as the music was played (I've done it occasionally during a performance!).
Anyone who has played through a large part of the E.T. Paull catalog, particularly pieces written by Paull himself, knows summarily what to expect and when. In other words, it is not necessarily the music that sold the piece, as his writing was both predictable and limited in scope. Many of the sections of his marches are interchangeable, which is not necessarily a bad thing (it has saved me from time to time). While not all of the pieces shown here have a recording for them at this time, there are plans to render most of them as time becomes available. For now, enjoy the cover art for what it is, which is usually sensational.
I have written a comprehensive biography on the Music, Art and Life of E.T. Paull
which is available in my Books and Music section
. It is also in a limited release in bookstores, including the Scott Joplin store in Sedalia, Missouri. At 400 pages it is printed in full color to make the most of the spectacular cover art displayed within. Included are complete listings of his publications, along with a rollography, discography, an analysis of a descriptive march, and several sidebars on composers, artists and lithographers and collecting of his music.
The Chariot Race, or, Ben Hur March
Edward Taylor Paull - 1894
This was Paull's first big hit. It established him through the use of both a beautifully colored cover and the descriptive text inside the music. Marches were gaining in popularity, and this same year would see the composition of John Phillip Sousa's Stars and Stripes Forever
. It was also the year that General Lew Wallace
, bucking opposition from the church, managed to get his novel Ben Hur - A Tale of the Christ
published. This is a fitting tribute to the most exciting part of the book, and indeed of both of the MGM productions of the story; that of the chariot race between once-friends Judah Ben Hur and Messala. For anybody who has not seen the 1925 production starring Ramon Navarro
, I highly recommend finding it. It is part of the Ted Turner movie library, and has many color scenes using the early two-strip Technicolor process that come close to the brilliance of E.T. Paull's vision for his covers. This composition enjoyed a great deal of new popularity when the film was released, and was often used as an accompaniment to the chariot race scene. Note the gradual acceleration near the end of the race, and an ending style that would find a permanent place in many future Paull marches.
The Stranger's Story (or Why Do Our Loved Ones Leave Us?)
Edward Taylor Paull - 1895
Just after Ben Hur March
, Paull tried has hand at song writing with minimal success. Originally titled The Old Man's Story
, the name was changed after the first printing, and there are a limited number of copies where the first title is overprinted with the newer one. Subtitled "Why Do Our Loved Ones Leave Us?", this waltz was one of the last of the early efforts of the composer/publisher at song writing. The lyrics
are typical schmaltz from a time when sorrow and pathos sold well (the "gay" nineties?), describing a man encountering a happy gathering and was asked to tell his story. It turns out that he had lost his three children, then his wife due to the sorrow, and would never be happy. Talk about bringing a party down - but this type of pre-ragtime music actually had a vast audience at the time. This particular waltz tune boasts the most cover variations of any piece in the Paull catalog, having also been printed as an instrumental. The two covers shown here represent an original first edition print from Richmond and an early 1900s edition from his third New York address.
The Della Fox Little Trooper
W.O. Johnson - 1894/1896
Dedicated to Miss Della May Fox, a famous Broadway stage actress and singer of the 1890s, this march has echoes of both Tchaikovsky
, as it actually starts with "Pistol shots or torpedoes" when performed in concert. There is also explicit percussion notation included to emulate a galloping horse in one section. Johnson had already published it once on a small scale when Paull took it into his catalog two years later in 1896. Miss Fox toured as a teen with a number of opera companies, debuting as an actress on a New York stage at age 20 in 1890. The Little Trooper
was an 1894 musical, and this march was simply a tribute that was not part of the play. Fox was one of the first artists to include slides during a performance to promote singing along with the latest songs (and to promote sales of the songs as well). Sadly she started a downhill slide from the late 1890s to nearly 1910 as a result of drug and alcohol abuse. Della made a short-lived comeback starting in 1912, dying at age 42 in June of 1913.
What Might Have Been
Castell Brydges - 1896
This sentimental and maudlin ballad may be one of the last Virginia publications by Paull before he moved from Richmond, Virginia, to New York City later in the year of publication. If the indications on the back cover are correct, it is also the fourth Richmond publication, since Charge of the Light Brigade
was not listed in spite of an 1894 copyright. The cover betrays, in some sense, the cigar box business side of the lithographers, the
A. Hoen Company
, given the use and shading of the flora and fauna that was common to their work. The music is otherwise unextraordinary, but extremely rare over a century later. Brydges was a popular tenor who at that time was singing with Haverly's Original Mastodon Minstrels
on the Midwest vaudeville circuit, so it is unclear how he got hooked up with the fledgling publisher in Virginia. This was one of Brydges' rare compositions, as he mostly sang works by other composers.
Charge of the Light Brigade March
Edward Taylor Paull - 1896
This was Paull's first publication after moving his family and growing enterprise to New York City. Many people are aware of this horrific October 25th, 1854 military conflict during the Crimean War
through the famous poem
by Lord Alfred Tennyson
, while others may have heard of it through the well-known classic pieces by Franz von Suppe
in his 1866 Overture to the Light Cavalry
, or Max Steiner's
brilliant film score of 1936. Paull also musically honored those brave men, of which some 500 or more gave their lives. A most interesting inclusion printed inside the front cover is a newspaper interview
with one of the survivors. He gives a graphic synopsis of what happened when the British forces went up against the Russians and the French in that narrow valley. Essentially, their captain misinterpreted orders sent to him by the commander, and the Brigade and infantry charged in the wrong direction, most to their slaughter. The style of the music itself represents more the bravery of the men, rather than the horrendous results of their needless charge.
New York and Coney Island Cycle March Two-Step
Edward Taylor Paull - 1896
The modern bicycle was just coming into its own around this time, after flirtations with contraptions that had huge front wheels or others that required uncomfortable riding positions or awkward dismounts. Also coming into its own was a little resort island just south of Manhattan, where entrepreneurs such as George Tilyou
were building hotels and amusements to lure New Yorkers out of the city for a day or a weekend. Among the attractions pictured on the cover are The Iron Tower built for the adventurous to enjoy a sensational view of the area, James Lafferty's
Elephant Hotel, complete with a small indoor mall, and Tilyou's Steeplechase Park
featuring a custom built Ferris Wheel. In this pre-automobile age, it was a common activity for couples to jump on their bicycles and make a trip across Coney Island Creek for a day of amusement and dining on Feltman's
hot dogs. This piece conveys some of that innocent joy quite effectively, including a sung trio extolling the joys of cycling over other sports.
The Elks Grand March
Leo Wheat - 1896
The Benevolent and Protective Order (BPO) of Elks was founded in New York just after the Civil War with an eye toward helping people in need as a civic organization should, "wherever Charity, Justice and Brother Love" were needed. There were a great many "official" and semi/pseudo-official marches and even waltzes written for various lodges and the parent organization itself. Wheat's rather king-sized entry was one of those, but never an official march. It is a 6/8 piece with some bravado, echoing ideas used by both John Philip Sousa
and E.T. Paull
, suggesting that the publisher may have had a hand in editing the work as well. Wheat, son of a Protestant Episcopal preacher, and a true Southerner who fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War and was proud of that, was otherwise known as a capable composer, pianist and church organist. He spent much of his life in Richmond, Virginia (where he likely met Paull) and Washington, DC, where he died in March of 1927 at age 73.
Loan Me a Nickel (or Pass Down de Centre)
J.W. Richardson - 1896
Soon after Paull was established in his New York office after having moved from Richmond, he started soliciting works by other composers, or they were bringing works to him, which gave him an opportunity to build up the size of his catalog. This piece was among the first batch of songs he published, and in terms of "coon" songs, which were increasingly popular at that time, Loan Me a Nickel
is perhaps the most pervasive in terms of lyric content in some spots, but also genuine in some respects. This was a true call and response tune with a simple melody. A soloist would sing one line, and then a chorus, or when thinking in terms of the church aspect of call and response, the congregation, would respond after each line with "Pass down de centre," probably a reference to a collection plate. While it is true that most of the cover lithographs of Paull publications were vividly rendered in two, three, or more colors, there were still some artistic entries done in monochrome, of which this one by an unknown artist was a standout. As coon songs were in and out of favor depending on the mood of performers or the public, this one appears to have had only one printing from the 17th Street location, as none were found with Paull's next address on 29th Street.
E.G. Brown - 1897
In 1897, after a mere half year in New York City after having moved his entire operation from Richmond, Virginia, Paull worked earnestly to build up his growing catalog, even though within a few years he would all but stop accepting submissions. Even at that, however, the publisher somewhat selective in what he would issue, attempting to bring in at least some pieces that fit his personal compositional mold. Sunset
, by the otherwise unknown Brown, fits this mold well. This swinging 6/8 march has a little less in the way of teeth than even Paull's marches to this time, but it is still pleasant. Actually, the gorgeously rendered
Joseph E. Rosenthal
lithograph on the cover is perhaps more memorable than the contents. I'm not sure how the music relates to the sunset, unless, perhaps, you imagine yourself riding off into it on your trusty piano at a brisk gallop.
Asleep at the Switch
Words and Music by Charles Shackford - 1897
From 1896 to around 1902, Paull frequently published the works of other composers, usually working as an arranger as well. However, those works seemed to more often than not fit into his particular set of saleable themes. Not uncommon for the late 1890s, this is a song about a pending disaster, which in the age before movies was enough to keep most listeners on the edge of their seat. When Tom the railroad man, who is worried about his sick child, fails to change the switch to the proper track to side-track the westbound freight when the express is on its way from the opposite direction, well, you know the potential for that scenario. What happens then (see the lyrics
) is the making of a bona fide tearjerker, alarmingly common in a time that was often called the "gay" '90s. As is evidenced by the presence of two covers, Asleep at the Switch
was re-released at Paull's third New York address without the benefit of the vivid
A. Hoen Company
lithograph on the front, an odd decision on his part.
The Thompson Street Cadets
Words and Music by Charles Shackford - 1897
Joseph E. Rosenthal
lithographed cover of this piece is reflective of the typical stereotypical attitudes towards blacks that was unfortunately prevalent at the beginning of the twentieth century. It was likely drawn from the lyrics, which mock a black military club as they march through town. All of the unfortunate standard elements of a "coon" song are found within. In a historical defense of this genre, it allowed many blacks who would otherwise have gone unpublished to make a mark both on stage and in print, and some of them embraced it, even to the point of appearing on stage ironically wearing burnt cork blackface to accentuate their already dark color. Even the lyrics added to the much vaunted Maple Leaf Rag
years after its inception contained a reference to a razor fight, as alluded to in this song. By the end of the ragtime era, such demeaning references either disappeared or were toned down quite considerably. Nonetheless, the cover is quite spectacular, and one of the brighter offerings by Rosenthal.
The Mardi Gras
William A. Corey - 1897
This is the first of a few entries by Corey into the Paull catalog. It fits well into what was becoming an events-oriented string of titles by the publisher, this being one of the most famous of annual bacchanalia in the U.S. Started by the French as a series of masked balls, and banned briefly while the southeast was under Spanish rule, French-Americans saw to restoring this tradition in the mid-nineteenth century, which started to take its current shape of parades and celebrations leading to Ash Wednesday in the 1870s. This march precedes by over a decade the jazz music that would eventually be a staple of the overall event, particularly the Fat Tuesday parades. A jaunty 6/8 piece, it still captures the spirit of fun, whimsy and even a little mockery that is found in the celebration. The B section is actually a bit of Italian in flavor, approaching a Tarantella in style. It is also asymmetrical in construction, an unusual feature for a Paull-published march. Of further interest is the lack of arranger credit by Paull, something applied to most marches by composers that he published. Party on!
He's Goin' To Hab a Hot Time Bye an' Bye
Edward Taylor Paull (M) and Harry S. Miller (L) - 1898
In addition to cakewalks, "coon" songs were also quite popular. This is a rare, albeit good example of the genre in a rare instance where Paull himself contributed to such a piece. Later works would show more sensitivity to blacks. Miller was known largely for his odd hit, The Cat Came Back
(a song that still won't go away), and provided rather deft if inaccurate negro dialect for the comical lyrics about one of the main topics often applied to them - mismanagement of new money. This song came out the very summer after the huge but short-lived Klondike gold strike in Alaska, the source of Mister Johnsen's money in the song. The cover is one of the few examples of this type from the Paull catalog that did not come from the
A. Hoen Company
in Richmond, Virginia, but it could certainly be held up to their outstanding work as a finely crafted colorful entry of its own merit. The chorus was used for the trio of Uncle Jasper's Jubilee
Beautiful Flowers - Waltz Song
Louis J. Monico - 1898
Paull was looking to build his growing catalog with all manner of genres during the late 1890s. This second publication of 1898 could be considered as an art song of sorts, but more of a parlor or recital piece than a stage work or even piano solo. Beautiful Flowers
is literally an ode to beautiful flowers, the bowers from heaven. If nothing else, the topic was perfect for a colorful cover, something for which the publisher was now known, and the simple but elegant H.M. Pease lithograph from the single edition of this piece remains one of the top Paull collectibles more than a century later. The piece itself is simple and drawn out over five pages in spite of only a smattering of lyrics, and notices of any performances were not found in newspapers of the era. Monico (born Louis Joseph Lebensburger), who was working as a bookmaker at that time, appears to have been largely interested in composing waltzes, having had three of them published by Paull alone. However, he did not remain in the music field for very long, found in the early 1900s living on Long Island and working odd jobs.
I've Scratched You Off Ma List
Harry Von Tilzer
(M) and Andrew B. Sterling (L) - 1898
The dynamic composing team of Von Tilzer and Sterling had just started in that regard with an initial publication in 1897, even though both had done some work separately before. This was their first of three pieces placed with Paull, and it got a very fine treatment with a colorful Robert Teller
lithograph caricature on the cover. While this representation would obviously be considered potentially offensive today, at that time it was simply business as usual, and we can't ignore that part of our history. The same is true of the lyrics, which while comic also represent the last vestiges of minstrelsy, and the peak of the 'coon' song at which the pair were so adept. It otherwise shows the promise of good things to come from this duo. An additional ragtime-scored chorus was added by composer Max Dreyfuss
. Von Tilzer would, of course, go on to start his own publishing firm, becoming one of the top five in terms of output and success during the ragtime era and beyond, and personally contributed many fine numbers into the American songbook.
The Ice Palace March
Edward Taylor Paull - 1898
Just the title alone conjures up many possible images. The "Ice Palace" could be a great and elegant skating arena. Maybe even a beautiful structure like the Crystal Palace from the great 19th century world exhibition in London. I personally think of the fabulous ice-covered house that Uri Zhivago
escapes to in the fabulous David Lean
film, Dr. Zhivago
. That was not Paull's original conception as is indicated in the Explanatory Text
. The original cover is a drawing of the front and interior of his Mount Vernon, New York home of the time after it had been severely damaged by burst water pipes during a late January freeze in 1898. Oddly enough, the address of Paull's frozen home, as published in contemporary newspaper articles, is quoted several times in the Explanatory, a violation of the privacy of a public figure that would be very questionable a century later. Subsequent covers like the second one shown here lean more towards the concept of a great skating arena. It could even suggest something along the lines of the public displays of fabulous ice sculpture still held throughout the northern areas of the American and European continents. This piece could never replace the skaters waltz, but it could be perceived as a two step for blades. The bass line in the trio starts with an unnamed melody that would later become associated with Laurel and Hardy
Uncle Josh's Huskin Dance
Len O. De Witt - 1898
Perpetuating once again the stereotyped behavior of the happy plantation negro on this otherwise beautiful
A. Hoen Company
lithographed cover, this cakewalk is actually fairly representative of the time and celebrates the folk origins of the music. Notable is De Witt's use of a paraphrase of Zip Coon
or Turkey in the Straw
to help identify the genre in the third section. In both the first and fourth sections the same characteristic cakewalk rhythm is used with slightly different melodic content, bringing some thematic unity within the piece. It makes for a pleasant overall dance tune, and the variation of the A section at the end shows even more originality by the composer. De Witt was not a terribly prolific composer, working primarily as a concert band arranger. Most of his output seemed to be from the late 1890s into the early part of the 20th century, but this was his best-known work.
America Forever! March
Edward Taylor Paull (M) and H.A. Freeman (L) - 1898
This is one of Paull's earliest overtly patriotic pieces, likely in response to the sinking of the Maine in the Spanish-American War a month before its publication. America Forever
equals the spirit and general direction of a Sousa
march or one of Cohan's
bombastic flag waving tunes, although it lacks some of the scope of such pieces, having been composed for piano instead of band. It also lacks an interlude in the trio, a feature of many of his better-known marches. The heading under the title quotes the lyrics to My Country, 'Tis of Thee
, and that song, otherwise known as God Save the Queen
, is quoted in full as the last chorus of the march, perhaps one of the first printed military-style renditions of it. Some editions of the cover did not have Paull's picture on it as it is shown here. A song version of the march also appeared for a brief period, as it was the first of two (see We'll Stand By the Flag
) based on a poem by H.A. Freeman
. America Forever
surprisingly did not show up in later folios of Paull's works.
Queen of Beauty - Waltzes
Otto M. Heinzman (M) and Arthur Trevelyan (L) - 1898
Waltzes were still big business at the beginning of the Ragtime era. This one was not untypical of the day, consisting of a collection of waltz themes. Three of them, placed sporadically throughout, are accompanied by lyrics. The waltz remains as one of the most romantic and flowing of all dances, and likely inspired more mental and physical passion than any of its contemporaries, save for the tango, both of which have been well-represented recently on the television show Dancing with the Stars
. Performer Alma Kremer
, pictured on the cover, and to whom the piece is inscribed, had recently left a small-time opera company in Buffalo, New York, to come to New York City and work in both opera and theater. She evidently had been tapped to sing and endorse this work initially. Heinzman had a relatively long career into the 1930s, although not too prolific. Trevelyan would soon provide the lyrics for a couple of early century Broadway shows, then all but disappear from the music writing scene.
William A. Corey, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1898
This is one of many pieces in the Paull catalog that utilized themes of Ancient Rome for both the cover and the content. In this particular case the finely-crafted Robert Teller
lithograph shows the gladiator against the lion. There were a number of lion-themed songs written in this era, so the public must have had some interest in the acknowledged "King of the Jungle." There is a definite similarity between the pieces that Paull wrote and those he published by other composers, such as this one. In many cases he gave himself arranging credit, but speculation might derive that he pretty much had a hand in almost everything he published. With his proven formula for sales success and their continuing receipt of royalty checks, it is unlikely that any of the other composers had many complaints concerning this process. While the cover image displays a scene of success, and a clean success at that, the life of a gladiator was certainly a bit more gory, as represented in the 2000 cinematic release The Gladiator
We'll Stand By The Flag
Edward Taylor Paull (M) and H.A. Freeman (L) - 1898
With a conflict in the Philippines turning our way, and the end of the Spanish-American War spearheaded by Teddy Roosevelt
and his Rough Riders, patriotism was on the rise in this country. In advance of George M. Cohan's
flag waving numbers, Paull produced this inspiring march set to a patriotic poem that clearly reflected the overall sentiment of the general population of the United States. The listener should be able to discern just how much this particular march aspires to be a Sousa-like opus. To further tie it in with the current conflict, the original cover shows Admiral George Dewey (Union Navy officer who was responsible for some of the victories of that year) and Fitzhugh Lee (nephew of Robert E. Lee, governor of Virginia, consul to Cuba, and a former General of the Confederacy during the American Civil War) shaking hands in unity. For many, the war that had ended some 33 years prior was still an emotional issue, so there was some possibility of controversy with even this contemporary image. The story carries on to "The Great War", in which Paull reissued some of his best patriotic works along with some new ones. We'll Stand by the Flag
was repackaged with a new cover reflecting the alliance between the Army and the Navy, a salute to the collective American Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.).
During his first few years in New York, Paull felt that to make it as a competitive publisher he had to have more than just the spectacular covers, but needed unique content as well. Harry Von Tilzer
(born Aaron Gumbinsky) had started writing music while traveling with a circus in his youth. When he came to New York to earn a living as a pianist and songwriter, Paull was one of the first who gave him a chance. In his second year with the publisher, having already written four "coon" songs with Andrew B. Sterling
, who would become a long-time musical partner, Von Tilzer went a bit more mainstream, composing a more genteel love and admiration song on his own. As with a number of Paull publications from this time period, My Pretty Polly
appears to have had only a single printing from his 29th Street location. The H.M. Pease cover was a minor departure from the Hoen and Rosenthal lithographs that dominated this period, but was dignified in its simplicity and grace. Late in the year Von Tilzer and Sterling would compose My Old New Hampshire Home
, largely to earn funds to stave off an eviction, and it was enough of a hit that he would leave Paull behind and become a publisher in his own right, with many more song hits to come as well.
By the Lakes of Killarney
Words and Music by Annie B. O'Shea - 1898
It takes a bonnie Irish lass to really put heart in an Irish song, and Miss O'Shea, who was pictured on the cover, delivered in full with shamrocks. Paull was fortunate to obtain this beautiful tune for his catalog, although it appears to have only seen one or two printings. The cover touted famed singer Herbert E. Denton
as a performer of this song, a fine endorsement for that time. However, another song by this title became much more famous years later when sung by the fine balladeer John McCormack
. The sumptuous
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover on this edition already exploited the visual potential of the piece. The composer was born in Ireland in 1866, had migrated to the United States around 1893, and was working as a musician in New York City right around the turn of the twentieth century. It was the only tune that O'Shea had placed under the Paull imprint, and one of perhaps only four or five that she composed around the same time, all centered around her birth home Ireland in some manner.
The Old Church Door
Words and Music by Gussie L. Davis - 1898
Among the composers that Paull gathered along the way for publication under his logo, some of them would go on to greatness, at least one would become a publisher in his own right and far eclipse the House of Paull, and one would be the ragtime champion of the world. But getting a piece from composer Gussie Lord Davis during his peak time was a definite triumph. Davis was the first black composer of note to make significant inroads in the publishing world of what would become Tin Pan Alley, and did so by trading on misery and maudlin emotions. Prior to The Old Church Door
he had turned out two pieces listed under the genre of "pathetic songs," not becase they were poor, but because they spoke of sadness. In The Baggage Coach Ahead
was the location of a little boy's mother as explained by the father, noting that she was laying in a coffin. The Fatal Wedding
, with music by Gussie and lyrics by William H. Windom
, had a plot that would give many fanciful television dramas today a run for their money in terms of plot, dealing with infidelity, a single mother showing up at a wedding, the groom committing suicide in front of a church filled with family and friends, and the two women going off to live their lives together without the annoyance of men. The Old Church Door
was a wistful journey, not pathetic, but still clearly one that tugged at the heartstrings. Davis had a promising future that was cut short less than a year after the publication of this tune, when he died of heart failure at age 35 in October of 1899.
The Little Village Church-Yard Near the Sea
Words and Music by Harry Jonas - 1898
Most publishers had at least some pseudo-religious music in their catalogs, even if they were maudlin numbers concerning loss where one went to the church for solace or to recount the days gone by. Paull took in such numbers sparingly, but had a couple of them by the end of 1898. This little charmer was not so maudlin, more about the memory of the parents of the singer and a desire to be buried alongside them some day. The Little Village Church-Yard Near the Sea
was overall a simple ditty by the relatively unknown composer. Jonas would produce only a handful works between 1897 and 1907, most of them less than memorable, and usually single editions not warranting reprints. As was so often the case during the late 1890s, it was the tastefully rustic
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover that prompted sales of this piece as well as similarly graced works, and given their relative rarity due to the lack of reprints they are still very highly valued today into the hundreds of dollars.
If You Were Only By My Side
Edward Taylor Paull (M) and Arthur Trevelyan (L) - 1898
While still a rising star within his particular niche in the New York City publishing and composition world, Paull tried his hand at a number of musical genres from almost-ragtime to the occasional song. Having already tackled ballads, this piece was nothing new where Paull was concerned, but also appears to have had only one edition, so not a stellar seller by any means. Composed to lyrics by Arthur Trevelyan, who had several moderate successes during his career with other music writers, the
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover was probably the highlight of this somewhat maudlin waltz ballad, which was scored in a sense more like his marches than a tender love ditty. The chorus does have some nice chime effects incorporated into the right hand. While this was not Paull's last song, as there were a few more to come, it certainly helped to reinforce just how capable a composer he was with his dynamic piano marches.
Uncle Jasper's Jubilee
Edward Taylor Paull (M) and Harry S. Miller (L) - 1898
The cakewalk was not yet quite the rage, even in 1898 more than two years after it hit the music stands, but it was the harbinger of what was to come. Paull was actually quite progressive at that time, and it likely did not escape him that there were many white composers successfully making good with an African-American music form. Perhaps the publication of Uncle Josh's Huskin Dance
inspired Paull to take a whack at cakewalk composition. The rhythms and harmonic progressions were fairly basic, but there are actually many inspiring passages within this piece. He may have been worried about the seemingly complex (at that time) rhythms, since simplified alternatives are also included. The trio was derived from the song He's Goin' To Hab a Hot Time Bye an' Bye
published separately earlier in the year, and contains a slightly more ambitious realization of that melody in the repeat. The caricatures on the
A. Hoen Company
lithographed cover are actually fairly high quality for that time.
The Rag Time Dance
Harry Von Tilzer
, arranged by Charles Jerome Wilson - 1899
Paull finally almost published a real, but not quite, piano rag that was composed, although not exactly, by future star writer and publisher Harry Von Tilzer
. It appears that in an effort to catch some of the growing audience for the new rag-time music, the first Paull publication of 1898 repurposed the song When You Do De Rag Time Dance
penned by Von Tilzer into a pseudo-rag that was actually more of a cakewalk with non-repeated sections and no key change. The cover states Max Dryfuss
as the arranger, although the title page inside gives that credit to Paull staff composer Charles Jerome Wilson
. As the official copyright record states Dryfuss, he is more likely the actual arranger, although Wilson may have contributed the simplified upper staff included above the standard treble line. The only repeat is back to the A section for the finale, but it is in non-consecutive context, making this a short work when played as is.
My Black Bess
Harry Von Tilzer (M) and Andrew B. Sterling (L) - 1899
This was the last of three Von Tilzer and Sterling pieces published by Paull. Von Tilzer would soon be partnered in another publishing firm, and subsequently own a very successful company with a long career as both a publisher and a composer. He and Sterling would also write a number of enduring hits over the next decade. My Black Bess
was one of their better pieces, anticipating their great hits of the 1900s and 1910s. The cover lithograph by an unknown firm does not represent one of the substantial investments publisher Paull usually made in his lithographs, but the team was also still less-known at that time, thus an effort to minimize financial risk was potentially a prudent business decision. A true bright spot in a sea of ethnic "coon" songs with contrived dialect, this one is a lovely tune about a black romance presented in good old plain English, thus showing respect for Negros while also assuring a piece adaptable to multiple stage performance styles with only minor lyric alterations, something that the team would prove to be quite good at.
Cupid's Awakening Waltzes
Danno Sintenis - 1899
Here is a rare example of a full-color
A. Hoen Company
lithographed piece published by E.T. Paull, but lacking either composer or
arrangement credits by the publisher himself. This mildly classical set of waltzes is quaint to say the least, but not particularly connected thematically. Actually, the first one has more a 6/8 subdivided feel, depending on the interpretation of the material, and appears to be representing a little cupid flying off to administer romance to somebody. The remainder of the themes are rather simple waltzes along the lines of simplified Strauss or Brahms. The Hoen cover is one of the most artfully rendered of the first decade of the Paull firm's considerable output. As for Sintenis, he was a German-born composer and musician of some small renown who had migrated to the United States in 1887. Other than his compositions there is virtually no mention Sintenis as a musician in the trades or newspapers. This was one of two pieces of his that Paull published. He died in Brooklyn in 1908 at age 35.
I Loves You, Sadie, 'Deed I Do
Charles Jerome Wilson (M) and Harry S. Miller (L) - 1899
Lyricist Miller was a competent songwriter in his own right, having penned among other memorable works the original version of The Cat Came Back
(also found on this site). For the Paull organization he seemed to work primarily as a wordsmith for various composers who were in and out of the door, including Paull himself. I Loves You, Sadie, 'Deed I Do
was a coon song, which cannot be escaped, but really the only truly offensive thing about it is the use of contrived ethnic dialect by Miller in the lyrics, slightly marring the otherwise poignant sentiment. In his lyrics he often used the terms "honey" and "baby," and is thought to have been a driving force in popularizing those endearing terms. Wilson's melody is quite pleasant, and the vivid
Joseph E. Rosenthal
is actually very respectful to Negroes as well. Overall, however, this was a tepid seller that appears to have had only one printing from Paull's 29th Street location in 1899.
Mammy's Little Dinah
Charles Clinton Clark - 1899
Clark was one of the few people brought into the Paull organization between 1898 and 1902 as a staff composer, before the publisher decided to drastically downsize the scope of his organization. To that end, Clark managed to produce an Irish waltz song and two ethnic-dialect Negro numbers in 1899 alone. Both of them were intended to be respectful to blacks, in spite of the contrived dialect and terms like Pickaninny. In fact, it seems clear from the lyrics that this song could have easily been called Mammy's Little Pickaniny
, something that Paull may have insisted against for the cover image. This is a gentle piece that comes across as a lullaby type of tune rather than the more common "coon" song. The well-rendered
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover showing a little Topsy-like girl with wild braids all over her head and a Mammy figure complete with the requisite watermelon would not be acceptable today, but for that time period it was actually relatively non-offensive, and a good example of the lithographer's artistic hand.
Otto M. Heinzman - 1899
The E.T. Paull catalog consisted largely of marches and the occasional song or ballad, so this piece was truly a standout. Other than the cover, Paull had very little to do with it. In addition, it is a cakewalk, something rarely issued by the publisher. He may have been trying to capitalize on the latest craze in hopes of good sales, although the primary content of Paull's output would march on through the next twenty-plus years, mostly from his pen. This is a rather simple cakewalk, and does not pretend to be ragtime. Even with enhancements, it is still no better than an average piece of the time. The beautiful
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover is what separates from others of the time. Although it contains some unfortunate blatant black stereotype and caricatures of the era, the quality of the cover art is still excellent, and compares to that of Alabama Dream
, another popular cakewalk. Heinzman was around 25 at this time, and ended up writing sporadically for some decades while working as a publisher's representative and a commercial salesman for a New York music firm.
The Ragtime Patrol
Charles Jerome Wilson - 1899
Another pleasant cakewalk addition to the Paull catalog, this one by Wilson, better known himself as an arranger, has few extraordinary features to set it apart from the flood of similar pieces published that same year. The left hand was very simplified in this edition, unlike many of the bolder marches Paull published. While such a shallow left hand made pieces like this sound a bit more thin, it offered the opportunity for the novice pianist to acclimate themselves more readily to the coming ragtime music, while the experienced player could most certainly fill in the lower octaves with little problem. The attractive
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover, while simplifying the stereotype of the happy "coons" as they marched down the street, was actually relatively inoffensive compared to others coming out at this time and over the next decade. As the reputation of ragtime grew, so did the amount of respect shown for the race it was initially associated with, especially in the content of the covers and the songs. Note the concrete and sidewalk and fire hydrant, placing this in one of the more progressive eastern cities of the time, assumedly in Manhattan.
A Warmin' Up In Dixie
Edward Taylor Paull - 1899
This interesting cakewalk was one of a limited number of brief experiments by Paull with the most popular music and dance craze of the day, but still a step shy of full-fledged ragtime. The fact that Paull went back to mostly marches after this piece possibly speaks to his comfort level with the ragtime genre and associated forms. Unlike many other covers produced between 1895 and 1915, it is to Paull's credit that the artwork on this one is sparse with the racial stereotypes of the time, although most cakewalks by this time were likely held in dance halls at social events, rather than around a campfire somewhere. The initial artwork was done by
Joseph E. Rosenthal
, but at least three successive lithographs replicating the scene for subsequent printings were completed by the
A. Hoen Company
, Paull's most frequent cover contractor. Even though the piece carries the traditional Paull repeat of the A and B sections after all themes have been played out, A Warmin' Up in Dixie
stops short of being just a syncopated march, demonstrating that the composer did his homework well.
Sam Rosenberg - 1899
This piece, the title being a shortened version of Excelsior, was dedicated by the composer to the Excelsior Lodge A.O.U.W. in Leadville, Colorado, a town that was primarily a mining community even at the end of the 19th century. A.O.U.W. represents the Ancient Order of United Workmen (click for more detailed information
), one of the earliest pro-labor organizations founded in the U.S. The need for such advocates of working men was quite prevalent as the 20th century started, but it would be close to two more decades before movements like those in New York and Chicago would have enough momentum to create appropriate protective legislation that made the unions a viable and legal entity. The A.O.U.W. was also among the earliest of these organizations to provide a collective insurance policy for its members to assist in the case of layoffs or disability. The connection between Rosenberg, living in Cheyenne, Wyoming at the time, the Excelsior Lodge, and publisher Paull is still a mystery. However, since the composer owned a music store in Cheyenne, it is likely that he handled some of Paull's music, and given the genre may have chosen Paull to publish the piece for better exposure and distribution.
Cindy, My Black Belle, Do!
Charles Clinton Clark - 1899
This piece is the second of two "coon" songs that Clark composed in 1899 of the seven issued while he was in the employ of E.T. Paull, being one of the few resident composers during the publisher's busy years of 1898 to 1902. Lyrically the content is not objectionable, but the ethnic dialect used, which is fairly extreme in this case with the exception of the title line, could be viewed as not genuine and even mildly offensive. The subject of a man courting a girl who is more interested in spending his money than spending time was universal, and not just black or white, so it was the dialect that made the difference. The
Joseph E. Rosenthal
cover art on the other hand is a fine example of lithography that does not appear to cross any race lines, and is also authentic to the lyrics of the piece. Mr. Clark possibly held multiple professional positions for a while, since while he was in the employ of Paull he was also the manager of a phonograph company in New Jersey around 1900, ast noted shortly after the December, 1899, publication of this work.
A Flower from Irish Soil
Myles McCarthy - 1899
With so many Irish immigrants having infiltrated New York starting after the time of the great potato famine of the 1840s into the early 20th century, it is understandable that they would want to enjoy a taste of home, often in the form of music, and that they were a large consumer group as a result, at least from the standpoint of a publisher. Paull did not write any tunes about the Emerald Isle, but he did publish a handful during his busy time from 1896 to 1902, of which this is one of the better type. While McCarthy did not quite have the melodic acumen of Ernest Ball
or Chauncey Olcott
, both of whom enjoyed enduring hits in the Irish song genre, this song was a bit above average for the time, and he performed it in several venues on and off the vaudeville circuit. McCarthy had his own dramatic/comedy company for a while. However, he worked more often as an advance agent for other theatrical groups, and ended up writing a memoir based on those experiences. The highly tasteful lithograph on the cover, likely created by
Joseph E. Rosenthal
, makes this a highly-prized collectible more than a century after it was first published in a single edition.
Down Old New England Way
(M) and Harry S. Miller (L) - 1899
A typical ballad of pathos with a feel good ending, this piece by Smith (who would later pen Arizona
among other works) and Miller (who had already written lyrics for and with Paull) was not destined to be a big hit with ragtime and cakewalks blooming up all around it, but it was certainly passable for the period. This was also printed as a newspaper supplement, a rarity for any Paull publication. Many publishers allowed the occasional piece to find its way to the public through a Sunday supplement in a newspaper, since it was good advertising for the publisher's products as well as their talent. They may have considered such tunes to be loss leaders that got customers in the door. In the end, even though they were often printed on inexpensive but rugged news print, there were cases where the supplement saw a much wider printing and distribution than the original publication, which is possibly the case here since Down Old New England Way
was included in a number of newspapers around the country, perhaps even up old New England way.
Charles Clinton Clark - 1899
Clark, a Connecticut native, was a composer of average ability, and the bulk of his known output was found in the seven works issued while he was in the employ of E.T. Paull as a resident composer from roughly 1898 to 1901. As with his two "coon" numbers, May O'Shea
was considered an ethnic geared toward the Irish, but without the usual dialect in the lyrics. As with his other works, this song was arranged by another Paull staff member and composer, Charles Jerome Wilson
. It is a simple gentle love song of yearning with nothing extraordinary to commend it except for the beautifully lithographed cover by
Joseph E. Rosenthal
. Clark eventually gave up his aspirations as a composer, and from around 1902 forward worked as a representative for the Story and Clark piano company, continuing that career on the West Coast in the 1920s.
The Midnight Fire Alarm
(Piano Roll Version)
Harry J. Lincoln
, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1900
This rousing non-Ragtime march was a popular addition to the E.T Paull
catalog, and as with the many of them, sported one of the most famous of the fabulous five-color lithographic process covers rendered by the
A. Hoen Company
of Richmond, Virginia. During his first few years of business, Paull frequently published the works of writers whose fast marches and galops were in line with his writing style, and he also had a hand in arranging the pieces to fit his style as well. Lincoln wrote a number of similar marches in the same era for other publishers as well, most notably Vandersloot in Pennsylvania where he spent most of his career as their manager. While there is nothing remarkable about this piece, I have managed to make it a more descriptive romp of a fire engine running through the streets of San Francisco saving a damsel in distress. Listen for the pumping of the old-wind up fire bell at the beginning. By the way, I can never quite remember how it ends, but it does eventually end, so please don't be TOO alarmed.
Dawn of the Century
Edward Taylor Paull - 1900
This was a celebration of the new century, although almost a year before the actual start of the 20th century (1901). The coming of Y1.9K meant progress and convenience for everyone, which is clearly conveyed on the cover. It displays several new inventions that depended on electricity to run (how shocking), and afforded exciting prospects for the coming century. The optimistic male-centered opening text reads: "Behold! A Child is born unto this world! A Man-Child, sturdy strong and beautiful. And wonderful! He clasps a shining scroll, On which is writ the future of the Race. It tells of Peace and Justice, Love and Truth, The end of Wars, the death of Enmity, And best of all, this Universal Law: God's Fatherhood, the Brotherhood of Man." Note the later monochrome release, possibly printed during war-time, which utilized only the black ink plate and none of the color plates, leaving a lack of detail in some areas of the cover.
William A. Corey - 1900
At the dawn of the new century, patriotism and world unity were on the minds of many, in spite of our continuing isolationist policies. Paull was keenly aware of what kinds of themes would both make good cover art and inspire the public to purchase from his catalog. This march is written in the same spirit as Sousa's Liberty Bell
, and on a similar theme. Corey's choice of title is interesting and foresighted, in that it would be 48 years before there would actually be a United Nations, with the League of Nations in the interim after "The Great War" ended in 1918. Note that the initial
A. Hoen Company
lithograph rendered in 1900 showed only the United States and Britain represented in the picture, while the mid-1910s release, also by Hoen, added in Italy, France and Russia, with Germany conspicuously but expectedly missing from the group.
I'll Meet You, Love, Along The Line
Joseph A. Gruber, arr. by T.V. McLaughlin - 1900
This song is quite a departure from the normal E.T. Paull fare, but still has that Paull look and feel thanks to the beautifully rendered
A. Hoen Company
cover. This was a piece clearly intended for stage performance, a fact that is reinforced by specific stage directions listed on the inside of the front cover along with the lyrics. These include gestures as specific as winking an eye or looking and/or pointing a certain direction in conjunction with a specific line of the lyrics. It goes on to suggest that, "To get best effect for this song you should use long coat, high hat, and cane." Actually, the lyrical sentiment of the song should hold as true today as it did a century ago. Be careful who you meet along the line. What "the line" may entail is never fully explained, but it likely means along the way as you go through life. As for Gruber, virtually nothing was found on him, so it is uncertain if he was the German composer of the same name. McLaughlin was briefly a Paull employee "along the line," and may have been responsible for the detailed stage directions as well.
Ion Arnold - 1900
Among the composers who fell into Paull's orbit during his first six productive years in New York City was the enigmatic Ion Arnold
, a largely classical opera composer and conductor who was dabbling in pop music. In this case, literally, referring to the pop of a champagne cork. Arnold had a handful of songs to his credit, and it was a coup of sorts that he or Paull snagged no less than entrepreneur Florenz Ziegfeld's
newest rising star (and possibly or possibly not his wife, depending on the story) the French chanteuse Anna Held
. Working as both a representative for various piano firms and as a musician and composer, Ion cut a swath through Manhattan in the last years of the 1890s. He submitted several works with Paull and other publishers, but favored the treatment he got from Paull, including the marvelous covers. His compositions published by Paull still command high prices.
Charles Clinton Clark - 1901
As the concept of what would become "Tin Pan Alley" was starting to catch on in the late 1890s and early 1900s, that of writing songs for the purpose of setting trends or riding on the wave of them rather than for the sake of just composing, women and love became a natural topic for many writers. However, there were some names that seemed to top the list, some white and some black. Mandy was one of those names, although it would be nearly two decades after this when composer
would offer one of the most famous Mandy songs of all time. However, any name with a modicum of rhyming potential, such as Mary, Sally, Rose, or Mandy (handy, candy, dandy, sandy, etc.) usually rose to the top. This first Paull publication of 1901 was one of the final offerings to his catalog by staff composer Clark, who would have almost nothing published after leaving the organization a couple of months later, eventually become a piano company representative. The tasteful if less-colorful than usual for the publisher cover by Bert Cobb highlighted the sport of scull rowing, which was very popular on college campuses and some private clubs as well.
The Witch's Whirl Waltzes
Edward Taylor Paull - 1901
Whether it be for the mildly Shakespearean tone of the title and cover or for its descriptive qualities, Witch's Whirl
spent several years as a moderately good seller for Paull. Forecasting to some degree the detail of musical and textual description he would soon infuse into his famous marches, Paull included several such cues thoughout this piece, and even included quotes by the Bard himself from MacBeth
and A Midsummer's Night Dream
just below the title. Among the fanciful descriptive passages included in the piece were the vivacious 6/8 opening signaling the Incantation of the Witch
, followed by musical references to The Fairies
and The Elves
. The waltz was inevitably used in its intended context, incorporated into an April 1903 production of Shakespeare’s Othello
at the famous Castle Square Theatre in Boston. The finely-detailed
A. Hoen Company
lithograph was one of the most intricately colored of their early 1900s offerings, leaning more toward pastels than the bolder color definition that dominated later Paull covers by the firm.
, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1901/1903
There are exceptions to virtually every rule. This is clearly a piece from the Paull catalog with a Paull cover, but initially without the usual five color process associated with his publications. It is one of the few monochrome covers to ever grace a first-run E.T. Paull published piece, and also attributed to a specific artist (Bert Cobb
). A color version by the
A. Hoen Company
of Richmond, Virginia, was released in 1903 and again in 1912 conjunction with Arizona's entry into the union, and stated as "Rewritten by E.T. Paull, rather than "Arranged by" him as was often the case. There are some differences between the 1901 and 1903 editions, including additional repeats and transitions. It was enough to warrant a new copyright. Contained within either cover is a non-remarkable march celebrating what would become our 48th state in 1912, but was still clearly a part of the "wild west," as is indicated by the Native American on the covers. In truth, the pictures appear to be more complimentary than the unfortunate stereotypes that were prevalent at the time.
A Signal From Mars
Raymond Taylor, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1901
From the time that astronomer Percival Lowell
observed the occurrence of what he termed "canals" on the surface of the planet Mars, there was widespread speculation about what kind of life was there, and how would they communicate with us, or us with them. The fascination was increased with the release of H.G. Wells War of the Worlds
, which postulated what an attack from the inhabitants of the fourth planet would wreak on our world. Space travel was also a fascination thanks to the works of Jules Verne
, whose Le Voyage Dans La Lune
(A Trip To The Moon
) was one of the first motion pictures ever produced by early film director Georges Melies
in 1902, and summarily stolen by the Edison
film company (yielding a great profit). The cover of this march implies a friendly breed of "Martians", who are both observing us and sending high-powered light signals our way. Note that the alternate cover, in print for only a short time, was initially realized with the telescope pointing the wrong direction. A signal perhaps?
Paull usually had his hands in most of what he published in some way, in addition to his distinct logo on the cover, either as a composer or arranger, no matter what level of actual work he put into a piece. One obvious exception in his publishing practices was for one of his more distinguished composers, the eclectic Ion Arnold
. A large figure in many respects, Arnold was known as a serious classical composer and conductor, even though his primary business was as a representative for piano and organ companies. He had placed a few notable pieces with Paull in 1900 and 1901, including the "drinking song" Champagne, which had been picked up by no less than Florenz Ziegfeld’s
French import, Miss Anna Held
. His oriental themed Roxala received quite a bit of good press, and was being performed by Sousa’s Band within weeks of its release. Given his history, output and popularity, Arnold likely had a bit of pull with Paull, even to the point where he was able to put his own emblem on a Paull publication at one time, after which they appear to have parted ways. This interesting novelty, although simply scored, has a combination of fugue-like qualities with stereotypical Middle-Eastern progressions, sounding a bit like an Oriental Johann Sebastian Bach hybrid at times.
Dance of the Fire-Flies
Danno Sintenis (arr. Edward Taylor Paull) - 1901
This piece is cast somewhat in the style of the prolific Eduard Holst
who wrote several student-grade gavottes, galops and the like at the end of the 19th century. While having some of the same shape and form as a march, the gavotte style has some variance in forward motion with subtle halts to left hand rhythm here and there, and the occasional pause. It is more classical in nature, and an ancestor of dance form that found little place even in the early 20th century, having been abandoned for the dances of abandon that ragtime brought forth. Most of these parlor pieces were either played in the parlor at home, or more often placed on the piano as a display of the stunning artwork once the pianist got tired of it. As for Sintenis, he was a German-born composer and musician of some small renown who had migrated to the United States in 1887. Other than his compositions there is virtually no mention of Sintenis as a musician in the trades or newspapers. This was the second of two pieces of his that Paull published. He died in Brooklyn in 1908 at age 35. The original H. Carter
cover was soon replaced in a second printing by the more spectacular
A. Hoen Company
My Rose from Tennessee
Harry S. Marion - 1901
The landscape of popular songwriting and publishing was rapidly changing from the 1890s into the new century. In the first year of the 20th century, Paull tried to keep up a relatively aggressive pace of publication for a small firm that still had large circulation, and within a year of publication of this sentimental work he would drop that pace considerably, focusing largely on works that fit his own particular paradigm. This above-average wistful ballad was comprised of an unusual but not unheard of combination of a 4/4 verse with a 3/4 waltz-time chorus. While it never vied to be the to be the state song of Tennessee, it still saw some play on vaudeville stages for a couple of years at least. The H. Carter cover, possibly done with some haste, and showing one of the singers of the piece (with no name indicated), also had a unexplained photograph of a man and two women standing next to a new highway, although any relationship to the song is unclear except that it may have been a recreation of the scene described in the lyrics between the man, his future wife and her mother.
I'd Give A Hundred if the Gal Was Mine
Ben Harney - 1901
The claim on the cover of Harney as the "Originator of Rag-Time" is certainly a stretch. He was actually one of the earliest composer/performers to run with it, and arguably the first white musician to perform it regularly in public, thereby popularizing the new music to some extent. However, it would not be long until dozens of composers and performers would out-pace him, as his ragtime output diminished during the first few years of the century, even though he continued to perform on vaudeville circuits. This piece, an unusual entry for Paull to have published, tells a typical age-old story (black or white, but in this case designated black) about a man who finds his fine woman, a real jewel, then is inexplicably abandoned by her just because he was stepping out a bit. It is, in a very real sense, a rag-time song given its syncopation. Harney believe that anything could be ragged, therefore espousing ragtime as a style, not a genre. History has been split on this opinion, but Paull made money on the piece, so he likely did not care about those details. He'd give a hundred if that song was his!
Richard Carvel Waltzes
Louis J. Monico - 1901
Two years prior to the publication of this piece, American novelist Winston Churchill
(not directly related to the well-known British diplomat of the early-to-mid-twentieth century) published his first major work, Richard Carvel
. In the tradition of later authors like James Michener, it is a fictional novel steeped in history, in this case during the American Revolutionary War. Written from the point of view of Carvel's grandson, it chronicles his view of the war while serving under John Paul Jones on the Bonhomme Richard
. In other words, just as Ben Hur
provided material that jump-started Paull's career, this novel was rich with images of a different time for which romanticized music, in this case waltzes (which were not yet terribly popular in the 1770s), could be composed. This was amateur composer and bookmaker Louis J. Monico's second entry in the Paull catalog, Beautiful Flowers
also having been a waltz. The book did fairly well and is now considered a true American classic, but Monico's career eventually just waltzed off into obscurity and a line of odd jobs, a sadly classic American story.
This piece was a real catch for the Paull catalog, yet its extreme rarity today speaks to perhaps less than average sales. Mike Bernard was one of the top pianists in New York vaudeville at this time, and not just ragtime piano either. He had a wide range of styles, and ultimately composed a handful of piece, including Phantom Dance
. His recent win as the Police Gazette's Ragtime Champion of the World gave him great import during his brief tenure with the firm. The Carter
lithographed cover is less colorful than many other Paull entries, having not been created by the
A. Hoen Company
. Bernard's dance is lively 6/8 march shifting between minor and major, and characteristic of many similarly named pieces that had preceded it. Bernard's own performance was likely quite a bit more ambitious than what was put to paper, but with enough embellishment the performer could at least stand a ghost of a chance of sounding like the composer.
The Storm King
Edward Taylor Paull - 1902
With echoes of Greek mythology, and to some extent forecasting the use of imagery in music that would be utilized in Walt Disney's Fantasia
(1940), Paull literally lets the heavens loose with this tune. As in the Thunder and Lightning Polka
penned by Johannes Brahms many years before, the pianist is required to produce the audible aspects of a thunderstorm, including thunder, lightning flashes, and rain. They represent the Storm King
who is dashing through the sky and wreaking havoc for all below. In the preface to the introduction section
, Paull actually insists that if the pianist is not able to play the collective weather effects correctly that they should omit that separate introduction, the most descriptive section of the piece. It starts with (as per the text in the score) "Distant rumbling of thunder. Drops of Rain falling. Flashing of Lightning. [repeat] The Storm King Awakes. He defies the Elements." Then it's on with the show, come rain or come shine.
Nero's Delight: Waltzes
Ion Arnold - 1902
represent the last of two pieces published by Paull in association with Ion Arnold
, the other being The Passing Soldiers: Patrol
, copyrighted on the same date of August 6, 1902, and utilizing the same cover art. The reasons are not clear, other than this might have been a continuing series that Arnold was trying to start on his own. However, he somehow persuaded, or even paid Paull to publish both of the works under the moniker of Ion Arnold & Company
, using Paull's address and noting him as the selling agent. Given his history, output and popularity, some of his pieces having been performed by the band of John Philip Sousa
, Arnold likely had a bit of pull with Paull. Based on the design template of their
A. Hoen Company
cover the two works shared and the text touting the pieces as part of "Ion Arnold’s Descriptive Series of Compositions," they were likely intended as the first of many such works. Nero’s Delight
was, actually, the last of these works, as Arnold moved on to other pursuits shortly thereafter, working as a piano company representative.
C.A. Egener (M), Everett J. Evans (L) - 1902
This is the only overtly religious tune that was published under the Paull banner, and came at about the same time that Paull himself had experienced his own revelation of sorts. This work was the last of the constant flow of pieces that had started in 1896. From 1903 forward Paull would publish between two and four works a year, not all of his own composition, but within a style congruent to his. Revelation
does not fit that. Egener was a versatile composer who wrote in a number of popular genres as well as this mildly liturgical work. Evans was also a relatively talented composer and arranger as well as lyricist, but did not seem to have a particular bent toward religious works, making this an exception for both men. This was one of the few Paull publications that was published in three different keys to accommodate various vocal ranges for the soloist performer, and included an organ score insert in addition to the piano and vocal score. Having all but abandoned use of
Joseph E. Rosenthal
by this time as well, the publisher went with a beautifully rendered
A. Hoen Company
lithograph for the cover image.
The Midnight Flyer
Frederick W. Hager, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1903
Tunes and covers of tunes with train themes tended to have brisk sales for many years. The lure of being able to hop on a train and go to new places, along with the comforting rhythmic sounds of a locomotive in motion, both mystified and lured people. This tune, dedicated to the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers in America
, had a particularly well-done cover. Curiously, it is a 6/8 march, whereas most train pieces tend to be composed in a 2/4 or 4/4 meter, which is closer to the natural rhythm of a train. The inside header reads "As suggested by A.C. Traweek, Wichita Falls, Texas." Traweek was a locomotive engineer from Texas, and possibly held some position of importance in the Brotherhood, but in the 1910s was shown as having been expelled for non-payment of dues. As for Fred Hager, he was a relatively prolific composer of marches and similar material, much of which found its way to recordings of the 1900s and 1910s, sometimes as Wallace Fredericks, and often playing the violin. His most popular piece after Midnight Flyer
was Laughing Water
, part of the Indian-themed music trend that started with Hiawatha
Charles N. Daniels
The Burning of Rome
Edward Taylor Paull - 1903
The Burning of Rome
is one of Paull's better descriptive pieces that centers around the inevitable destruction of Rome in the second century A.D. Nero and his fiddle are nowhere to be found, but effects emulating trumpet calls, rushing chariots, people praying, and walls crashing down throughout the city are in abundance. The accompanying description page
highlights the intended effects in this piece. Rome's destruction was an event that, for many historians, signaled the beginning of a millennium known as the "dark ages." The Christian church was as yet fledgling, and as it gained strength it would try to perpetuate, and at times control the bulk of world knowledge, albeit for the better good of man. But the rampant destruction of everything that the Roman Empire represented, such as the information-rich library located in Alexandria, Egypt, created a time of fear for many, and indifference for others. Much accumulated knowledge was lost during this time, and based on just the indices of topic titles for the Alexandria library, we would have likely been much further along in terms of culture and technology at this time had this information been retained, and there was a desire to use it constructively. But Rome wasn't built in a day, now was it?
The Romany Rye (Gypsy Intermezzo)
Edward Taylor Paull - 1904
Man the tambourines, get out the crystal ball, and don your most festive colors! This piece was somewhat of a departure, or a concerted attempt at one, for Paull. Actually, it does have a different flavor than a lot of his marches, but comes off mostly as a modified cakewalk. The trio section is particularly interesting, with some counterpoint between the hands. Otherwise, it utilizes the same sectional structure as most of Paull's gems. By this time he had stopped accepting the dozens of submissions a year that had been published since his move to New York City, so now released on average between two and three tunes a year until his death in the 1920s. Therefore, it was to some degree on him to keep the variety in the output in order to inspire both cover artists and consumers, something that kept him viable as a publisher on Tin Pan Alley in spite of the slowed growth. Romany was a nineteenth century term for gypsies, referring most specifically to the males. The Rye reference indicates heartiness, or, a hearty gypsy. Whether gypsies would be hearty enough to actually march to this tune is a different issue!
The Circus Parade
Edward Taylor Paull - 1904
Definitely based on a happier topic than many of the other Paull marches, the Circus Parade is jolly jaunt in 6/8 time that is very evocative of circus music, a unique genre that was coming into its own about this time. But then again, there are elements described in here that I have never seen at a circus, so maybe I'm missing something. They include Cavaliers, Knights, and Cossacks, and an entrance of Roman Charioteers. (There's that Ancient Rome theme again!) It is definitely the type of piece that one could imagine little children marching around the house to while their mother is working it out on the parlor piano. The detail on this particular
A. Hoen Company
cover is stunning in many regards, and likely representative of the big tops of that era, including both the Ringling Brothers Circus
and their main competitor, the Barnum and Bailey
group, whom they would purchase within the next three years. It is possible, given the presence of his Ben Hur March
at many showings of the stage version of that novel, that this piece found its way into the repertoire of one or more circus bands along the way
The Jolly Blacksmiths
Edmund Braham and Edward Taylor Paull - 1905
Men who love their work! The nineteenth century equivalent of the garage mechanic, appliance repairman, and all-around handyman, blacksmiths were often revered in communities where they were scarce. It was more than just shoeing horses or doing quick repairs to wagon hitches. Blacksmiths were icons, even well after the age of the automobile was underway. They also kept the anvil industry solvent. Even poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
gave the profession its due in his famous poem The Village Blacksmith
. Possibly written to respond to or complement the Longfellow tome or the popular Jolly Coppersmith
, this march actually borders on being a cakewalk in a few places, with common syncopated patterns present in the opening section. Based on knowledge of Paull's other compositions, it is most likely that Braham was responsible for that section, with only minor contributions for the bulk of the piece. Better smile back... that man is holding a hot poker!
Paul Revere's Ride
Edward Taylor Paull - 1905
Listen my children and you shall hear, another march from E.T. Paull. OK, it doesn't rhyme. Actually, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's
poem (partially included in the Explanatory
on the inside cover), is a very good topic on which to base a descriptive march. The tale of famous silver smith of Boston was famously taught in classrooms all over the United States, so virtually everybody who had studied any facet of the Revolutionary War knew the "One if by land, two if by sea" story. Included in the descriptive headings for each section (mostly for the pianist) are horse gallops, alarms, assembly of the minute men, and the inevitable battle of Lexington and Concord followed by the enemy in full retreat. Paul Revere's Ride
was appropriately dedicated to the Daughters of the American Revolution
, an organization that is still quite active into the 21st century, particularly in Washington, D.C.
Silver Sleigh Bells
(Piano Roll Version)
Edward Taylor Paull - 1906
Although not specifically titled The Christmas March
, this is the closest to a Christmas piece that Paull ever came. This can be better ascertained from the cover, which is covered with holly leaves, sleigh bells and conventional bells, than from the contents. He was a known Christian, evident in some of his other pieces, but the holiday was still closely associated with the church, so many composers still demurred somewhat from writing a popular tune about the event. The descriptive headings that are supposed to reflect the experience of a winter sleigh ride, and which are excruciatingly detailed in the Explanatory
, include the cracking of a whip, sleigh bells (silver ones at that), church bells, a railroad crossing, and a race with a mad dash to the finish line, all accentuated in this performance by percussive effects. Performed with the proper sound effects and sleigh bells, it is a passable predecessor to Leroy Anderson's
famous instrumental Sleigh Ride
from 1948. The version presented here is my acoustic recording from my Christmas Eve 1915
Saul L. Alpert, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1906
Nature strikes again in her full fury. Actually, this piece is just a typical march, and does not contain the usual emulation of nature associated with so many marches in the Paull catalog. In fact, the cover is the only suggestion of a natural disaster since there is none of the usual descriptive text within that is intended (as we now speculate because there is so little data to go on) to drive how the pianist played each section and convey that mood to the listener. The composer, Saul Alpert
, was a Russian immigrant, and this appears to have been his only publication of note, so given his lack of experience it may not have been intended as a descriptive work. No mentions of him were found in trade papers as a musician. Hurricane
is as predictable as many Paull catalog marches are, but the interlude in the middle of the trio is actually a nice transition between the bass-only melody and the full iteration in the treble. The ending is also unusual as it calls for an acceleration throughout the coda. It may not blow you away, but it's fascinating to watch.
Alfred Feltman, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1907
Alfred Feltman, who is pictured on both of the covers, operated a small amusement area on Surf Avenue in Coney Island, and the 500 seat Feltman's Restaurant
that his father, Charles Feltman
, had built. Both facilities operated until the mid-1940s. The elder Feltman introduced the hot dog to the United States, although he did not name it as such. Ziz was the name of a roller-coaster type of ride, the Ziz Mile Minute, that opened in 1904 and lasted only five seasons. It was an early design of the famed amusement ride builder William F. Mangels
, and ran out to the ocean and back using a third rail system for motor power, making a hissing noise as it moved along which reportedly gave the ride its name. However, the ride was tame in comparison to other coasters built at Coney, so people soon lost interest. As for the tune, one device used in several places throughout the march is the playing of right hand chords within a sustained octave. This was occasionally used as an alternative to the left hand playing the chords in order to produce a smoother effect, as well as timbral contrast. Otherwise, the direct influence of Paull is felt throughout this arrangement.
After the triumph of the Spanish-American war, which helped boost Teddy Roosevelt
into the Vice Presidency (later the Presidency through succession), patriotism was an extremely popular topic for songs during the first two decades of the twentieth century. Following right on the heels of George M. Cohan's
powerful The Yankee Doodle Boy
and You're A Grand Old Flag
, and in the tradition of most of John Phillip Sousa's
patriotic marches, Paull managed to outdo all of these in at least the content of the magnificently colored cover rendered by the
A. Hoen Company
. The tune is also very rousing, and a literal flag waver, but nobody hums it today like they do the others. To its credit, this march manages to engage at least the average pianist who was able to grasp the somewhat easier patterns than were found in piano rags. These marches were likely played by pre-teen boys of the time before they discovered ragtime. If nothing else, the piece was often purchased for the cover art alone. The printed quote at the top of the tune and the musical quote at the end pay homage to the original banner lyric, Francis Scott Key's The Star Spangled Banner
, written nearly a century prior.
C.E. Krell (arr. Edward Taylor Paull) - 1907
Diversions from everyday life have always been necessary, but not always practiced. One of the great special leisure activities that was highly popular with the French was the masquerade ball. There you could be who you wanted to be without the inhibitions that would normally express themselves without a mask on, even if people recognize you right off. It's also fun to dress up, and masquerade balls were found not only within the 400 (the elite of New York society), but even among the poor, particularly in French-settled Louisiana. However, I have been to a masquerade or two in my time, and while there may be some waltzes and the occasional promenade, I can't recall any military-style march being played at any point. Perhaps in the early 1900s it was done, but it is more likely that the title provided a great opportunity for another signature Paull cover, more than reflect the music within. Note that this was "rewritten and arranged" by Paull, therefore it sounds like Paull as well in spite of what may have been the original composer's intent. So maybe I should just mask my feelings about it and just have fun.
The Home Coming March
Edward Taylor Paull - 1908
Since the combination of patriotic and military themes seemed to be best sellers, this "Home Coming" march effectively combines the themes, even though it was written in a time of relative peace. The most recent conflict, the Spanish American War, had been over for some time, though still in the memory. of most people. Actually, Paull, in one of his characteristic attempts to stay relevant and engaged with the public, asked for their help in naming the work. By offering $10 in gold in exchange for the proper name, the Sheffield Advertising Agency received over 3,000 titles on his behalf, with the winner being one W.C. Bates, as mentioned in the explanatory inside the front cover. The title guided the
A. Hoen Company
cover art, and suggested the inclusion in the header of the chorus lyrics of Home! Sweet Home!
by John Howard Payne. This march is pretty much just a parade piece with trumpet call effects, and an unusual notation of people "cheering" in a couple of spots. The cover reflects different aspects of homecoming for all of the armed forces of that time.
Edwin Ellis, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull
Lighthouse pieces were always popular, a trend that peaked with the publication of the morose Asleep in the Deep
. Paull was a master at anticipating the public's reaction to disaster oriented tunes, so this topic was a natural for him, although it was never revisited. A pleasant march by Edwin Ellis, Flash Light
may have required little arranging when submitted, based on the composer’s other competently scored later works. Nonetheless, the header noted that it was “rewritten and arranged by E.T. Paull,” which likely meant formatting it into the famous Paull style. In this instance, the trio interlude was more of a fourth section than the usual expected minor interlude, followed by the characteristic return to the trio voiced in the right hand instead of the left. The meaning of the title is unclear. The cover depicts two light houses warning away a ship during a raging storm, the usual dramatic image found on an
A. Hoen Company
cover. While The Light House March
would have been a more logical choice for a title, one that had not been used to that point, The Flash Light
was probably the composer’s choice, and possibly had a different meaning.
Lincoln Centennial Grand March
Edward Taylor Paull - 1909
Another patriotic composition, this one musically extolled the virtues of the sixteenth president of the United States on the centennial anniversary of his birth. The
A. Hoen Company
cover was rendered from one of the most famous photographs taken of President Abraham Lincoln when he was in the White House. A patriot at heart, Paull openly admired any leader who had the courage to resist what was wrong, even if he was in the minority. While nowhere near the scope of the later tribute to Lincoln by Aaron Copland
, it is still a spirited piece. In the older tradition of a true Grand March tribute, Lincoln Centennial
is a broad 6/8 march with extended sections. It also provides yet another opportunity to include part of the Star Spangled Banner
within the march, giving it some patriotic appeal. Because so much scope was required of the piece, it came across as more of a reduction of a larger band arrangement than as a march composed for the piano. But let's be honest, Abe - it does work sometimes.
The Race Course
Jack Glogau, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1910
The excitement of a day at the downs is readily captured in this two step. Actually, horse racing was a very respectable society event when this was written. One of the most popular places on New York's Coney Island was showman George Tilyou's Steeplechase Park
. The most famous attraction and centerpiece of the large park was a mile long mechanical steeplechase ride utilizing wooden horses on a circular undulating track. This was one way in which the masses could participate in some way in a sport of the elite. Thus the Paull catalog was successfully capitalizing on yet another American fascination. As for Paull's methodology when taking on the works of other composers, this number was highlighted in the Music Trade Review of January 29, 1910, noting a Paull trend of only a couple of pieces per year since 1903: "The Race Course" was written by J. Glogau, but has been rearranged by E. T. Paull. Mr. Paull's custom is to be the sole author of the second of the two marches which he publishes yearly, but to rearrange or rewrite for the first one a march submitted by some other composer."
Napoleon's Last Charge
Edwin Ellis, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1910
This is another composition in the Paull catalog that although it is not composed by its publisher, it still carries his influence and style. The bugle call in the beginning is much the same as the beginning of the earlier Charge of the Light Brigade
, and so is the outcome of the story, generally speaking. Also as with its predecessor, there is a lengthy description inside the front cover detailing the event around which the piece is composed. Actually, the text appears to be very complimentary of Bonaparte, in spite of his ultimate ambition. Note that in spite of the subject of interest that this piece is not all that short! This was the first publication associated with Paull's new office on 42nd Street, having moved with many other Tin Pan Alley firms from 28th Street to the Theater District. Included here is a later monochrome rendition of the cover, showing how some releases were printed without benefit of the color plates, which may have been due to either a cost-cutting measure or wartime shortages.
The Carnival King
Ralph K. Elicker, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1911
Little is notated in this rousing composition that indicates the origin of the title. It definitely harkens back to an earlier time, and to Italian and French European traditions, when one lucky villager at Carnival time would be crowned king for the day. A similar tradition exists to this day in the annual Mardi Gras celebration, usually associated with New Orleans. Much of what is found in the Carnival or Carnivale of today is a celebration of cultures, centering more on food and partying than other known amusements. There has also been a long association of gypsy lifestyles and dances with carnivals held in Eastern Europe. The composer was the less than inspiring Ralph Kennedy Elicker
of Pennsylvania, who soon after this submission gave up composing to go back to a career as a blacksmith, then as a piano technician. Still, Paull found enough meat within the work to turn it into something at least marginally interesting, having likely paid Elicker outright for his manuscript. It was evidently only a moderate success in the end.
The Dashing Cavaliers
Edmund Braham and Edward Taylor Paull - 1911
Merriam Webster's Dictionary defines a Cavalier as a gentleman trained in arms and horsemanship, or a mounted soldier or knight. The picture on the cover being the only clue, the first part of the definition most likely applies to this piece. It was becoming difficult to sell 6/8 marches like this one in a time when even John Phillip Sousa
was performing large numbers of cakewalks and rags in addition to his own tunes. Edward teamed up once again with Edmund Braham, with whom he had previously composed The Jolly Blacksmiths
. The Dashing Cavaliers
drew on the times of King Charles I in the 17th century and his loyal supporters. They disregarded the fact that the term "dashing cavaliers" was originally one of contempt directed specifically toward the king's horsemen, or that later it became a term of ridicule suggesting a lackadaisical attitude. Indeed, the modern term assigning a "cavalier attitude" to somebody originated from this part of history. But no such approach was taken in crafting this fairly solid work.
Ring Out, Wild Bells
Edward Taylor Paull - 1912
After more than a two-year absence of a Paull solo composition, this hit the streets in the spring of 1912. Ring Out, Wild Bells
, was inspired by the poem of the same name
by Lord Alfred Tennyson
, which is quoted in the header of the music. The original poem, of which there were ten stanzas, was associated with the Christmas and New Year holidays, and was part of a larger body of work in honor of Arthur Henry Hallam
written between 1833 and 1850. As of the early 20th century several melodies had already been applied to these particular stanzas. To his credit, Paull did not try to turn this piece into a song, but instead worked to create a sort of martial tone poem. There are bell effects throughout the tune that were "carefully studied," and about which the performer is informed: "The better the Bell effects are rendered, the greater will be the success of the composition." This piece does not stray too far from the E.T Paull composition formula, but the last section, emulating swinging of the bells, does help it to stand out from many other pieces from the Paull catalog.
The Roaring Volcano
Edward Taylor Paull - 1912
Another "Descriptive March-Two-Step", The Roaring Volcano
combines the theme of Ancient Rome with that of natural disaster. Whether people bought the piece for the cover, because of the press, or due to a genuine interest in the new work did not matter. They did buy it, and the follow on sales from new customers buying older Paull pieces, which judging by the number of surviving items with the 42nd Street address in the footer was likely considerable, proved to be a boon to business. At the very least, the spectacular
A. Hoen Company
artwork likely helped to save it from a more tepid sales rate. Telling the story of the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, as it destroyed Pompeii, this dynamic march begins with the Olympic Games (which were incidentally held in 1912 when this composition was published, but were certainly NOT being held in the year 79). After the ceremony crowning the victors of the games, the bells ring out, the volcano rumbles, then all of nature's fury belches forth on the piano keys. During the quiet vespers passages, one can hear the volcano interrupting as it roars in the distance. The piece ends with the inevitable death and destruction of all present, and maybe even the pianist. I have gone all out to stretch the descriptive elements of this performance as far as possible through varying tempos and dynamics, to the point I could feel the lava flowing down my neck. By the way, a "Two-Step"? Can you imagine merrily dancing to this piece? Perhaps with a pom-peiius attitude!
Kaiser Jubilee March (Jubiläums- Marsch)
Edward Taylor Paull - 1913
What a difference a year makes! Hmm? Pictured on both editions of this beautiful and stunningly executed cover is "Major" Paull himself offering a rose in homage to a figure of Emperor/Kaiser William II (Wilhelm) of Germany on his 25th anniversary as ruler. The uniform was often worn for events with First Regiment of Minute Men, of which Paull was a ranking member. He was also associated with the Kriegerbund, a German-American organization, which already made a visit to Germany in 1910, but had not actually met the ruler himself. This time, in 1913, Paull was prepared for his next trip with the Minute Men and the Deutschen Kameraden und Patrioten Bundes of North America, having his march scored for a band for Kaiser Wilhelm's 25th anniversary celebration as emperor. The piano version of the march was released simultaneously in the United States and in Germany, the later as Jubiläums-Marsch
, one of the rare Paull publications with a separate edition specifically edited for a non-English foreign market, rarer still due to slow overseas sales. However, less than one year later, World War One (working title, The Great War
) broke out and it suddenly was not so cool to be keen on the Kaiser. As a result, this march was likely pulled out of circulation by the time the U.S. became involved in the conflict, although a considerable number had been printed. By the end of the war Paull had already honored the French with a march and most certainly maintained his popularity as a notable American patriot and of the Minute Man.
M. Alexander, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1914
The cover for Ticklish Sensation
has more to recommend to this piece than the contents, although it is a short but charming work. This is a simple non-syncopated march, actually closer to an intermezzo, that is through-notated with all of the repeats written out, and not cast in the classic Paull mode of repeating the opening sections, in spite of his arrangement credit. It was not without merit, however. The A section was fairly descriptive, giving the listener a fairly clear idea of someone with a persistent ticklish itch. The trio was quite innovative. Divided into four six-bar segments it was evocative of the by now-famous Indian-themed piece Red Wing by Frederick "Kerry" Mills
, but still original in its execution. The innovative
A. Hoen Company
lithograph on the cover of this piece that has made it a desirable collectible to this day. As for the composer, no positive identification was made, but there is some possibility it was a pseudonym for Syrian immigrant Alexander Maloof
, who provided the next work for the Paull catalog, The Egyptian Glide
Egyptian Glide (One Step)
Egyptian Glide (Tango)
Alexander Maloof, One-Step arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1914
This entry represents a very unusual duality not just for the Paull catalog but ragtime era pieces in general. Maloof was a talented concert pianist from Syria who had his own set of suites in Carnegie Hall during the 1910s where he taught, later moving to the Carnegie School in New Jersey to finish out his career. While many ragtime or dance pieces were available in both instrumental and song versions, and some of the more dynamic entries in the Paull catalog were available in four-hand and even band versions, this is one of the few that was available as the same piece, ostensibly, but in two different dance styles. The core of this adventurous tune by the talented Arab-American composer and later bandleader, is the same, but the left hand rhythm in particular differs between the two. The tango was ostensibly the original composition (although it does not quite qualify as either a tango, being more of a modified oriental habanera). Paull had to do little but straighten out the left hand passages to create the two step version. His thinking on this will never be known, but it can be surmised that the march-oriented composer felt that many of his customers might have trouble unraveling the unusual "tango" rhythm, thus he would reasonably have offered an alternative. In any case, it is a lively modal piece in rondo format, with both versions fun to listen to and play. In this case, knowing it really only takes but one (pianist) to Tango, I have added quite a bit to the tango version to really make it dance. So live in de-Nile for a minute and kick up your heels. Tut tut!
Paull's Hesitation Waltz
Edward Taylor Paull - 1914
The Hesitation Waltz is said to have originated in the more refined venue of New England, namely Boston, around the time of the much less genteel animal dances. Vernon and Irene Castle were known to have used it as early as 1911, and some dance schools adopted the form and music as a way of teaching the waltz with some restraint. Unlike a standard waltz which has the relentless 1-2-3 1-2-3 rhythm, the hesitation waltz has points at which one can stop and adjust, contemplate, or set up the next move. The starting and stopping of the left hand rhythm also infuses variety in the performance, and allows for a number of possible steps for stage dancers during these breaks, such as double steps or spins. Paull's entry is a perfectly fine example of the genre, although parts of it are similar to many of his march melodies. The most striking feature is the modulation between the repeat of A and the C section, which raises a fifth instead of the usual fourth. I hesitate to say much more on this topic, however.
Herald of Peace
Edward Taylor Paull - 1914
This represents a rare instance where Paull is not listed as the marquee publisher for his own piece, even though his company ultimately printed and distributed it. There was a purpose to this as Paull explained within: "The object of the Herald of Peace Society to whom this March has been donated by the composer, is to create a relief fund from the profits realized through the sale, which fund will be distributed by the American Red Cross for the benefit of the sick and wounded and destitute mothers and children in the war-stricken countries." The war in Europe had been growing for a few months by this time. Heading up the effort for American-sponsored relief was Miss Mabel T. Boardman, Chairman of the National Relief Board of the American Red Cross. The sentiment in the U.S. at this time was largely as it was during the Vietnam and later Iraqi conflicts - something that many Americans did not believe we should be involved in, but ultimately were. In any event, the Red Cross still carries out the same mission around the world in countries often devastated by war, or other catastrophic events like the 2009 earthquake in Haiti. Where the military may be regarded as enforcers of the peace (sometimes), the Red Cross, both in America and worldwide, are still the true Heralds of Peace and Heralds of Mercy. While it has a 1914 copyright, this march did not see a general release until late in 1918, almost simultaneously with the November 17 armistice. On the later releases, which greatly outnumber a potential limited run in 1914, the word VOID is stamped over the explanatory which asks for donations to the society, whose leader had died of influenza weeks before the release.
Edward Taylor Paull - 1915
was named after the Irish militia that had been largely in charge of domestic enforcement. The Guard in Ireland was similar in many ways to our own National Guard. They were largely used to quell domestic problems, but often assisted the army in times of need. It really did not matter whether or not Paull was trying to capitalize on the name, as virtually every publisher in the business was seeking new material about the war in 1915. The piece was an interesting and worthy effort evocative of traditional Irish and British themes that moved along very well. For a number of reasons, Tipperary was quite the topic in the 1910s, and there were several pieces written about it. By combining the town with the famed Irish militia unit, Paull was able to conjure up yet another inspiring march. Incidentally, it was shortly after this piece was published that the structure and purpose of the guard in Ireland was toned down considerably by the ruling powers, part of which contributed to the ongoing conflicts in that country.
Battle of the Nations
Edward Taylor Paull - 1915
In anticipation of the coming "Great War", which was already well underway in Europe, Paull managed to exploit the public's interest in war with a this February, 1915 release. It had a grand title and a fanciful cover that even included a depiction of the recent advent of aerial attacks. The inclusion of musical themes from various nations such as Germany, France, England and Scotland in the protracted opening prelude clearly signaled the international aspect of the piece. However, the quote of Yankee Doodle
more than two years before any American commitment to the conflict might be viewed with hindsight as either a logical conclusion of what the future held, or perhaps Mr. Paull’s own assertion that the United States should also be involved in the conflict with the allied forces. How it was viewed in 1915 likely varied depending on who was paying attention to the piece. Battle of the Nations
is otherwise full of the usual marching effects and bugle calls, a lots of cannonading. Patriotic consumers flocked to buy it and put it on their piano as a conscious support of the war effort. Whether that includes advocating our involvement, and what Paull's take on this topic was at that time is still unknown.
Edward Taylor Paull - 1916
A long standing fight in this country was that of the female half of the population trying to get recognized by society through constitutional action, a cause which they won shortly after this piece was published in 1916. Among the previous well-known fighters for this cause, and ancillary causes such as prohibition, were Carrie Nation
and Susan B. Anthony
. Max Morath
once quipped that it was a non-fortuitous coincidence of timing how women were given the right to vote, and then helped to elect (repeat slowly) Warren G. Harding
. Paull was either backing the cause, or trying to generate more sales through topical titling of his latest march. Either way, it is "respectfully inscribed to womanhood of the universe, which seems to be inclusive of the fair gender anywhere they might be! The following poem is included as the only description for the piece: "For though she almost blushes to reign, Though love's own flowers wreathe the chain, Disguise the bondage as we will, 'Tis woman - woman rules us still." OK. Sounds good to me!
Battle of Gettysburg
Edward Taylor Paull - 1917
The Battle of Gettysburg, which took place on the first three days of July, 1863, was one of the bloodiest single conflicts in American History. More lives were lost on that battlefield than during the Vietnam and Korean wars combined. It was still a vivid memory to many veterans still alive more than fifty years later when this descriptive piece was released. The
A. Hoen Company
cover depicts the most famous aberration of the last day, Pickett's Charge
, in which whole battalions of Confederate soldiers marched across an open peach orchard to a certain death. Among the pianistic effects within were a variety of bugle calls, fife and drum corps playing Dixie
and Yankee Doodle
, the clashing of bayonets and guns, and the bugle call to order "retreat from the trap of Death." A somewhat detailed synopsis of all three days of the horrendous conflict written by Paull was included inside the cover. Pieces such as this one tend to stir the military spirit in the listener, but with the conflict still in the memory of many who remained divided as to whether they were Yankees or Suth'ners, it likely did not evoke too much bipartisan patriotism. Just the same, it was played all around the country by orchestras, and received more advertising than any Paull composition in the prior decade.
Hurrah! For the Liberty Boys, Hurrah!
Words and Music by Edward Taylor Paull - 1918
Even with advancing age, Paull wasn't depleted yet of either his enthusiasm or his penchant for exuberant marches. This patriotic march song (and two step) heralded, months in advance, the eventual return of American troops from The Great War
(the working title of World War One
). The photo on the cover is one of an actual homecoming parade from an earlier conflict. Having arranged it for orchestra as well, Paull's goal was to help aid in the sale of Liberty Bonds from April of 1918 through the summer. It also found its way to military training camps around the US, used as inspiration for the soldiers. The end of the war did not negate the popularity of many pieces written during the war, such as K-K-K-Katy
and George M. Cohan's
enduring anthem Over There
, but anything that reinforced our feeling of victory sold well at Woolworth's. Paull's gift was salesmanship through hyperbole and march writing in that order, so his attempts at lyrics were occasionally clumsy. This song, however, stands out a little better than some of his previous lyric efforts. Hurrah!
The American Wedding March
Edward Taylor Paull - 1918
After a long line of historical, disaster and war or martial themed tunes, this was a radical departure for Paull in many ways. The motivation may ultimately have been a combination of adding something useful to the American repertoire of event music, as well as finding a new way to keep his aging inventory and composition style fiscally alive in the post-war era. Not that the more traditional Bridal Chorus
by Richard Wagner (from Lohengrin
) didn't need some healthy competition. In my capacity as a wedding pianist/organist, I often try to steer away from the Wagner because it is essentially used for a mock wedding of a prostitute in the overly-long opera, hardly the type of material a blushing bride really wants to be associated with. While Paull's piece is perhaps not as dynamic as Trumpet Voluntary
or the oft-used Canon in D
, it has merits. It can be (humorously) assumed to some degree that the church E.T. Paull frequented was relatively long, or that weddings he observed there had a large number of attendants. It is still a worthy wedding piece with lovely dynamic contrast, a quiet mid-section, and a very dynamic trio for the bride's trip down the aisle. Works well on both organ and piano to boot, a lovely marriage of Paull and his music.
Edward Taylor Paull - 1918
General John J. Pershing
, the supreme commander of the American Expeditionary Force (A.E.F.) sent to Europe during "The Great War," was lauded by many in both song and marches. In a time where some were vociferously opposed to our entry into that conflict, supported by such song as I Didn't Raise My Boy To Be A Soldier
, Paull and George M. Cohan
chose to rouse the public with their blatantly patriotic tunes. Paull's was boosted by a bold cover utilizing an inspiring design created by the U.S. Committee on Public Information. The promotional image for a film of the same title released by them had been adapted by the
A. Hoen Company
for the colorful cover. Both the film and the piece remained popular into the middle of 1919. This march is only loosely associated with the film, but certainly must have seen some benefit as a result. Pershing actually got the job because his predecessor, Major General Leonard Wood
, referred to President Woodrow Wilson
as "a spineless rabbit", therefore relinquishing any possible glory.
Spirit of France
Edward Taylor Paull - 1919
At the end of The Great War
in late 1918, it was very popular to be French or know someone who was French. For some American people, it was still fresh in their minds that France gave the United States the Statue of Liberty, and that we owed them something for such a gift. So when the Kaiser went after the French, The United States and Britain took umbrage, and helped them defeat the forces of evil. In spite of overwhelming odds, the spirit and determination of the French (not to mention their hospitality and gratitude) seemed to rub off on the visiting soldiers. A decidedly military march, the subtext inside quotes a stirring battle communication between Général Ferdinand Foch
and Général Joffre
at the battle of La Marne. Even more stirring is the cover, which had a cameo of General Foch, and shows the ghost of Joan of Arc
guiding "her boys" to battle and certain victory. As with Pershing’s Crusaders, it was not a descriptive march; just a musical military exercise. Viva la Francé!
Vanity - Valse Idyl
Isidore J. Schanes - 1919
Near the end of E.T. Paull's publishing career, the output was less march oriented, and headed into other areas, although not necessarily mainstream for the time. His name also appeared less frequently as an arranger. Vanity: Valse-Idyl
was from the pen of a young Russian immigrant, Isidore J. Schanes. Although Paull affixed his arranging credit to the work as well, it was likely for formatting or minor editing. This is one example of what could be termed a parlour piece, or even something suitable for a student recital. Vanity
is not a particularly difficult waltz. One of the more interesting devices used is the hesitation in the left hand, where the bass octave and first chord are struck, but the second chord is omitted, leaving a space, or hesitation. The two-color cover, by one of the famous Starmer
brothers, is simple but intriguing, portraying a fairie [older spelling] (as indicated by the wings) admiring her reflection in a pond. Near the end of the 1920s he likely found the simpler covers by artists like the Starmers to be a more economical choice for his aging firm than the
A. Hoen Company
lithographs he had relied on for so long.
Love's Fascination Waltz
Isidore J. Schanes, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1920
This is a follow up "valse idyl" by the young Russian immigrant Schanes, coming soon after his Vanity
entry published by Paull. Similarly simple, although with a little more depth infused by Paull's arrangement, it has few hallmarks of the jazz age that was exploding around it. The beautiful cover was rendered in monochrome, uncharacteristic for Paull, but perhaps a budget measure in anticipation of minimal sales for the piece. It was by an unknown lithographer utilizing an image originally rendered in 1905 by the Taber, Prang Art Company
. While the waltz was not quite dead, it found favor mostly with the aging population of the Victorian age, and in spite of efforts to update it with syncopations or newer chord progressions, it was still a 19th century form. Whether it was Schanes’ idea or Paull’s is unclear, but the piece was divided into three named sections; Love's Awakening
, Love's Anguish
, and Love's Pleadings
. The nature of the waltz and how to play it was detailed in the header with text written by Paull. This would be perhaps the last of that genre presented in the E.T. Paull catalog.
Dreamy Oriental Melody
Blanche Ring (M) and Ida Simpson (L) - 1920
Blanche Ring was well-established by 1920 as one of the top entertainers, having gone from her introduction of Bedelia
in 1903 and her signature Rings on My Fingers, Bells on My Toes
in 1909, to a movie actress of some note as well starting in 1915. Many of her early performance successes, including Come Josephine in My Flying Machine
were captured on early recordings as well. She also was known for mime impersonations of other newsworthy folks. But in addition to these talents, Ring composed from time to time. How Paull took on this particular composition is not known, especially since Ring had been commuting back and forth to California since 1916. However, it certainly was the most colorful of those pieces on which her picture appeared. The song is a passably enjoyable tune that does evoke some of the essence of what was considered "oriental" music during this time period. Ring continued to make appearances in on stage until at the late 1930s and film cameos into the early 1940s.
Legion of Victory
Gerald Carlton and Rodolfo Guarda - 1921
The first tune released by Paull in 1921 was, no surprise to many, a march. Paull further added his customary arranger credit to Legion of Victory
as well. While it came more than two years after the end of the war, the
cover depicted soldiers marching northward in Manhattan beneath the magnificent but temporary Victory Arch in Madison Square just a block from the Flatiron building at Fifth and 23rd. This triple arch was erected in late 1918 on the same spot as the Dewey Arch built in 1899 to honor Admiral George Dewey’s
victory won the prior year. Both of the monuments were temporary, and efforts to have them rebuilt in stone failed. The march itself was "Dedicated by Permission to The Officers and Men of the American Legion." The American Legion was initially chartered by an act of Congress in 1919 as a "patriotic veteran’s organization." In late November 1920 they had their first convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to adopt a Constitution and preamble for the group. They also took the Boy Scouts of America under their wing, accepting the duty of chartering scout troops all over the United States. The composers and Paull were among the first to honor this group musically, although their march was never officially adopted by the American Legion.
Beneath the Spanish Moon
Leo Bennett (M) and Ida Simpson (L) - 1921
Even though it had been a while since Paull had published anything of his own, and would be and would be almost another year until his next work, the publisher tried to keep to his twice a year schedule with other pieces (actually four in 1921), including this charming little Spanish-themed work. Bennett had been a relatively busy composer for some years, and Simpson had provided lyrics for Dreamy Oriental Melody
published the previous fall. It is an above-average work of the genre, and made it to a few recordings over the next few years, in addition to at least one piano roll. Paull promoted the song heavily, stating that, "The lyrics are of a very high standard and as a combination we look forward to the number receiving favorable support in vaudeville circles and proving a feature number with orchestras, particularly those of the dance type..." The print edition also included a score for a duet performance, as well as a quartet.
Custer's Last Charge
Edward Taylor Paull - 1922
Lyrics and Explanatory
General George Armstrong Custer
wrote that he often felt misunderstood by his men and some of his superiors. History has shown him to be an overachiever, largely due to a rivalry with his brother Thomas Custer
, who had shown a great deal of leadership and valor during the American Civil War, where he received two Congressional Medals of Honor. George did have a big ego and a propensity for self-absorption. These, more than uninformed decision making, may have led to the death of Custer and 265 men of the Seventh Cavalry Regiment at the hands of well over 2,000 Sioux and Cheyenne Native Americans at Little Bighorn in 1876, better known as "Custer's Last Stand"
. Rest assured that this well-crafted late Paull work is replete with the expected descriptions of the battle, including a reference of Custer as "White Chief Long Hair," and actual Native American lyrics and melody in the beginning.
Edward Taylor Paull - 1922
One of the more interesting battles near the close of the Civil War took place in Virginia in the Shenandoah Valley, resulting in a no-loss no-gain situation. Confederates overtook a regiment of General Sheridan's in his absence and sent them fleeing north. Sheridan was on his way back when he encountered his troops in retreat, and as the story goes, he and his trusty steed inspired the men to turn around and chase the Confederates back out of their camp. It wasn't the result of what was achieved, but the determination and leadership of Sheridan that inspired a Longfellow-type poem about him written down by Thomas Buchanan Read. Paull was working on the Custer story at the same time, a battle with a considerably different outcome, so may have thought this to be a nice balance. He touts it as a companion to Paul Revere's Ride
, although it stands fairly well on its own.
Elizabeth G. Black, arr. by Edward Taylor Paull - 1919/1923
One might believe that with the coming of the Jazz Age, the march would be a dead music form. Almost! However, with a decided victory after an often controversial war, the country's populace was simply glad to have the boys back home, and parades were held for some time after the Armistice. This was just one of many pieces from the Paull catalog celebrating that victory. Breaking with the traditional march form, it more closely follows accepted ragtime format by going back to the A section after the B, and of course one more iteration of A at the end. Black had originally copyrighted this march just after the war, but no earlier edition of it has been found, so Paull's arrangement may the first actual publication. It also stands out in the catalog as one of the only marches with a single key signature, being entirely in Bb. This could be considered one of the last gasps of a long line of Paull-arranged marches.
The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse
Edward Taylor Paull - 1924
A grim topic was this one which Paull chose to write a march about. While most of his disasters were about natural phenomenon, this was about one of the most feared quartet of riders in legend. It is also one of the darker covers. Taking on a story that was not only of Biblical proportions, but actually from
the Bible, was a bold move on Paull's part. This late entry into the Paull catalog starts out rather cheerfully, but one can hear elements of silent movie drama in the B section. The remainder of the piece is rather upbeat in spite of the topic at hand. It is also one of the only single-key marches by Paull, being entirely in Bb. The positive views of the horsemen are said to have represented humankind in various stages of existence. The more common story is that they represent Pestilence
(the swordsman), War
(the archer), Famine
(the scalesman), and Death
(the grim reaper). The impression one may take away from listening to this piece is that they were a rather happy bunch of guys who liked their jobs!
Spirit of the U.S.A.
Edward Taylor Paull - 1924
This is the last of the great Paull patriotic marches published during the composer's lifetime. There may have been more, but beyond one posthumous release, any further pieces of this nature have likely been forever lost. Since thoughts of war were in the past in the midst of the roaring twenties, the aging composer called on a topic that would fit his decades-old style, blatant patriotism. In fact, it invokes the "spirit of '76," and may have been intended to coincide with the U.S. sesquicentennial in 1926. As a further tie-in, the first bars of the introduction quote the famed Revolutionary War piece, Brighton Camp
(later known as The Girl I Left Behind Me
). There are also some nods to National Emblem
in terms of style and content, making this one of the better Paull marches in terms of adaptability to a full band. The cover lithograph invokes the famous image of rag-tag Revolutionary War soldiers bravely marching in the face of incredible odds, also reenacted by Bugs Bunny a couple of decades later. War is hell, but that's the spirit.
Top of the World
Edward Taylor Paull - 1926 (posth)
Announcement on back
One of the last frontiers is represented here in a couple of ways. First, the elusive North Pole had finally been reached by airplane in a famous expedition led by Lieutenant Commander Robert Byrd
(who retired as an Admiral), and was funded for the most part by National Geographic
magazine. The event was a great public relations boon for the magazine, but also considered a great achievement by mankind - something that would be eclipsed fifty years later by a trip to the moon. Paull, ever cognizant of the public's thirst for topical music from his firm, wrote this piece in advance of the trip but never published it before his death in 1924. It was Maurice Richmond
, longtime friend and supporter of Paull, who bought the company and published this final E.T. Paull piece, with the colorful cover, Paull publishing house banner and all, as a tribute to the great march publisher. In spite of promises on the rear cover
to continue to publish more of his manuscripts left behind, no more appeared that we know of. Still, Paull was on the top of the world as long as he was creating the American heirlooms his firm was so well known for. So a fitting final tribute it is.
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