Tin Pan Alley: A Chronicle of the American Popular Music Racket

Tin Pan Alley: A Chronicle of the American Popular Music Racket

Tin Pan Alley: A Chronicle of the American Popular Music Racket

Tin Pan Alley: A Chronicle of the American Popular Music Racket

Excerpt

This is a book that needed to be written, and we are all grateful to Dr. Goldberg for having written it. American popular music has become a very important part of American life; it has reached, indeed, as appears from the chapters upon Ragtime and Jazz, into the hearts of many European countries. It is one of the most colorful aspects of the American scene and, as the American Society of Authors, Composers and Publishers attests, it is getting into the class of Big Business. Tin Pan Alley, in a word, is a unique phenomenon, and there is nothing in any other country of the world to compare with it. New York, being the musical and theatrical center of the nation, where most songs and stage acts are made, naturally gave rise to the Alley of the Tin Pans.

. . . . . . .

With this enormous increase of interest we who engage in song writing are being asked more often than ever by laymen as well as by aspiring composers for our formula, if any: just how, where, why and when we write our music. In placing my experience on the record here, I wish not to stress my own work, but to correct a few of the many popular misconceptions about song writing.

Often one hears that composing a song is an easy affair. All a number needs for success, it seems, is thirty-two bars; a good phrase of eight bars used to start the refrain is repeated twice more with a new eight-bar added which is much less important.

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