Something Doing

Ragtime Happenings in the Southland

JUNE, 1999


Rose Leaf Ragtime Club May Meeting (5/30/1999)

Reported by P.J. Schmidt


By this time most of you are aware that the founder and editor of this newsletter passed on suddenly in April. Gus Wilmorth had completed and mailed the April issue before his demise. A tribute to Gus will follow these introductory remarks.

There was no way we could get an issue out in May, but, thanks to Darrell Woodruff, meeting announcement cards were mailed instead. I have volunteered to edit Something Doing until one of you eagerly takes it over. (That may be a while!)

In the last issue, Gus wrote: "Subscription renewals to SOMETHING DOING keep trickling in. Most resubscribers seem to find the publication interesting and useful. If you do not resubscribe, we must assume a lack of interest. Beginning next month, subscriptions due in January and February and not renewed will be dropped from the mailing list. Okay?"

Because of the complications of the last few weeks we are going to postpone the cancellations until July. If you have not renewed by mid July, the June issue will have been your last.

We will continue to report on the monthly meetings of Rose Leaf/Maple Leaf Clubs, as well as concerts and festivals. We will try to keep you posted on upcoming events. We invite your contributions to this newsletter. If you attend a concert or a festival, please write it up and send it to Bill Mitchell, 224 Chinook Circle, Placentia, CA 92870. E-mail address: Also, if you would like to share your ragtime opinions, discoveries, whatever, please forward them.
—Bill Mitchell, Editor

Gary Rametta and P.J. Schmidt opened this 34th meeting with a spirited two-piano "Maple Leaf Rag." P.J. soloed on Joplin's "Rose leaf Rag," and Gary followed with a set of Joplin compositions: the melodic "Weeping Willow," "Sugar Cane" (nice and jumpy), and finally the Marshall collaboration, "Heliotrope bouquet."

Susan Erb followed with the lively "King Chanticleer." Her next piece, "Homeward Bound," was from an old sheet music song, "Rockabye Your Baby." P.J. inserted Joplin's "Country Club Rag" before bringing on Jim Turner, who played Scott's "Pegasus Rag," Joplin's "Silver Swan Rag," the 1916 song, "Blame It on the Blues" (in a nice stride arrangement), Joplin's "Solace" (with Jim's unique variations), and finally, Johnny Guarnieri's "Pasadena Shout."

Brad Kay followed with his own "Blues for Gus," Jelly-Roll Morton's "The Pearls," an improvisation he called "P.J. Goes Ballistic" (was our emcee climbing the walls?), and finally the song, "Got Everything but You." Brad has been composing a lot lately, and promised to come to the meetings more often (Yeay!).

George McClellan and Lee Roan played three songs on two pianos: "Can't You Hear Me Calling, Caroline?," "Yadda," and "Toot Toot Tootsie, Goodbye." On his own, George followed with the songs, "You'd Be Surprised," and "Maybe." (Berlin and Gershwin respectively.)

Ron Ross, who has been composing one new number each month, played "The Retro Rag" (his newest), and "The Rickety Rag." Keep up the good work, Ron! Fred Hoeptner followed with his own "Dalliance," and Scott's "Victory Rag" and "Efficiency Rag."

Next, Susan Erb played Gershwin's "Swanee." Gary Rametta returned with "Scott Joplin's New Rag," and Joe Lamb's "Alaskan Rag." P.J. played Scott's energetic "Peace and Plenty," and Brad Kay finished off with Fats Waller's "My Fate Is in Your Hands" and "Handful of Keys." To sum up, it was a very good meeting, with a large audience and plenty of fine pianists. Y'all come back now!

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