Early American Sheet Music: Its Lure and Its Lore, 1768-1889

By Harry Dichter; Elliott Shapiro | Go to book overview
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Early Comic Songs

A fascinating collection of illustrated Comic Songs may be assembled by the interested collector. They turn up occasionally in bound volumes containing other contemporary material, and the covers are always amusing. Those published in the 1820's, '30's, '40's and '50's are very interesting, and in many cases drawn by unknown artists or unsigned. The authors have been trying to obtain information for many years about an artist who signed himself "Spoodlyks." Many publishers issued the same songs with practically identical front covers; we have given only one imprint of such items, due to lack of space. Incidentally, most of these ditties are of British origin.

* CORK LEG, THE. G. Willig, Jr. Baltimore. [ca. 1835] A Celebrated Comic Song. Sung with great Applause by Mr. Burton. Lith. Willig. Artist C. A. Smith. [4] pp., p. 4 blank. Two lines of the 8th verse are reproduced on the cover.

"He clung to a lamp post to stay his pace,
But the leg would'nt stay, but kept on the chase
."

Illustration: The gentleman with the cork leg is hanging on to a lamp post for dear life. And he's stone sober!

* HANDSOME MAN, THE. Wm. Hall & Son. New York. [ca. 1847] Comic Song. Written by John Frances Esq. Author of "They Dont Propose." Sung by Mr. W. L. Hammond at the New Strand Theatre in the Burletta. The Man For The Ladies. Composed by J. Blewitt. Lith. N. Currier's . Artist E. Brown, Jr. Pr. 50 Cts. 8 pp., pp. 2 and 8 blank, pp. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, are incorrectly numbered. Plate Mark 498. Two sets of couplets from the song are reproduced on the cover.

Illustration: The Handsome Man himself is shown in all his glory, holding a riding crop in left hand. His dress? Very Beau Brummell! And are the ladies admiring him! Ask the husband on the left, who is berating his wife.

* HE WAS SUCH A NICE YOUNG MAN. Atwill. New York. [ca. 1840] A Celebrated Comic Song. Written by R. W. Alldridge, The Music Composed & Arranged By M. T. A' Beckett. Pr. 50 cts., Lith. Endicott. [n.

-47-

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Early American Sheet Music: Its Lure and Its Lore, 1768-1889
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