Uncle Dave Lewis and I will again be speaking about Bob and Nick Roberts and we have some exciting new discoveries to present! The flyer for the program is below.
ARSC New York Chapter
FEBRUARY 2016 Meeting
7:00 P. M. Thursday, 3/17/16
(At the CUNY Sonic Arts Center)
West 140th Street & Convent Avenue, New York
Or enter at 138th Street off Convent Avenue
Shepard Hall (the Gothic building) – Recital Hall (Room 95, Basement level)
An elevator is located in the center of the building
“I May Be Crazy but I Ain’t No Fool”
The Legacy of Funnyman “Ragtime Bob” Roberts
PRESENTED BY DAVID N. LEWIS AND REBECCA FORSTE
Many collectors of vintage records need no introduction to Robert S. “Ragtime Bob” Roberts, one of the most charismatic and mysterious figures in the early phonograph industry, his name appearing on nearly 500 discs and cylinder releases. Researcher Rebecca Forste and I have been looking into the Bob Roberts story from the context of his hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio and have made new discoveries in the life of this key entertainer. We have discovered a new birthdate for him and have made inroads into his family history, particularly in regard to his illustrious father, minstrel show entertainer and circus entrepreneur Nick Roberts (1841-1905). This will be a joint presentation where the Nick Roberts-related material will be presented by Rebecca Forste, with Uncle Dave Lewis joining in on Roberts’s recording activity, and later, career in early radio.
David N. “Uncle Dave” Lewis has been an ARSC member since 1999. He has presented at several ARSC Conferences since giving his first talk in Santa Barbara in 2002 on the subject of the obscure bandleader, Harry Spindler. Lewis ran the underground record label Hospital Records out of Cincinnati in the 1980s and has had a long presence in public radio, appearing in years-long programs on WAIF (Cincinnati) and WCBN (Ann Arbor, University of Michigan). He worked as a classical music buyer for West Coast Tower Records and Virgin Megastore locations in the 1990s and spent a decade as an editor for the All Music Guide, now RoviCorp. Today he presents monthly lectures at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County on topics relating to the music and recording industry in the Ohio Valley, and is an historian and producer for WVXU, the NPR affiliate in Cincinnati. His radio piece on bandleader Earl Fuller won an “Excellence in Journalism” award from the Society for Professional Journalists.
Rebecca Forste has worked as a contributor and editor for a variety of publications. Her background and interest in sound recordings is largely the legacy of her late mother, who was an audiophile and longstanding collector.
She contributes reviews to the ARSC Journal and returns to these meetings following her initial appearance last year in the Hal Kemp program.
DIRECTIONS TO THE SONIC ARTS CENTER
Subway: Take the 1 train to 137th Street City College and walk north to 140th St. & Broadway,
then go east to 140th St. & Convent Avenue. Take the A, B, C, or D trains to 145th St, go south on St. Nicholas to 141st St, (one long block), then west one block to Convent Avenue, and south one more block to 140th & Convent Avenue.
Bus: M4 and M5 on Broadway; M 100, 101 on Amsterdam Ave. (one block West of Convent Avenue)
All ARSC NY Chapter meetings are free and open to the public.
Voluntary contributions to help defray our expenses are welcome!
My latest for Dada News Daily:
ANKARA — The Turkish military today released sound recordings that are said to be clear and repeated warnings to the crew of the Russian plane that violated Turkish airspace this week, which they say are approaching number two on the Billboard charts in November. On the recordings, voices can be heard repeatedly saying “change your heading,” “hello?” and “watch your step.”
Officials stated that these recordings challenge and disprove Russian assertions that their air crew received no warnings. In addition to the voice of an unidentified Turkish Airman, the unmistakable voices of British singer Adele and American hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan are heard issuing warnings. The recording is shattering sales records.
“There’s alone of the union, needful diversions,” croons Adele in the compulsory broken English customary to international military warnings.
“This is on the charts with 522,000 first-week sales — and the plane represents another 662,000 (£36,000) thrown in,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip…
View original post 488 more words
Here is my report for Dada News Daily
WASHINGTON — Republican candidate Donald Trump’s liberties experts announced today that the world will be safer now that he is able to control the growth of human populations by manipulating female fertility through the use of parasitic worms after one species of roundworms was shown to increase fertility. The experts further stated that all copies of the United States Constitution have been updated to reflect this innovation.
Researchers added that Trump is “thrilled to put his entrepreneurial gonads to work solving the greatest problem facing the planet today, while at the same time expanding the market for his roundworm and hookworm breeding farms.”
When asked about the health risks associated with infections of parasitic worms, such as attacks of fever, diarrhea, anemia and suicide bombings, researchers responded that Trump had balanced these risks against the substantial benefits and that he continues to exhort American immune systems to “pull up their bootstraps and get…
View original post 366 more words
Last month, David Lewis and I presented History of Cincinnati Music: Puttin’ On the Ritz – Southwest Ohio Show People
at the Main Library of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County
The original plan was for me to present information on three figures: Powhatan Beaty, James O’Neill and Paul Laurence Dunbar. That plan had to be amended due to limited time and I focused on Powhatan Beaty and Henry Boyd, to whom Beaty was apprenticed early in his life.
David gave fantastic presentations on Charles Urban, Arthur V. Johnson, Theda Bara and Harry Richman.
This month, on Saturday, we will be presenting Part Two. I will be presenting the information on James O’Neill and Paul Laurence Dunbar that I had to reserve earlier, while David will tell us all about Burton L. King, Ted Lewis and Harry Reser.
Here is his radio piece on King:
And here is his recent radio interview with Joseph Rubin, curator of the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville:
And here is the event page for part two of this talk:
I think it was David who wrote this description of it:
“A continuation of Rebecca Forste and Uncle Dave Lewis’s series of historical sketches of Cincinnati figures in entertainment. On this program, Rebecca will present on 19th century actor James “Count of Monte Cristo” O’Neill, father to playwright Eugene and, for the first time, tell the untold story of poet Paul Laurence Dunbar’s connection to mainstream, Broadway entertainment. Uncle Dave will narrate, in summary fashion, the careers of Harry Houdini’s film director Burton L. King, and musicians Ted Lewis and Harry Reser.
Program will be held in the Reading Garden Lounge located on the first floor of Main Library’s south building.”
So, here is some of what I presented last time on Powhatan Beaty:
“The three (Beaty, O’Neill and Dunbar) were contemporaries, but Powhatan Beaty was born first, in Richmond, Virginia on October 8, 1837. Most sources state that Beaty’s parents are unknown, but I have located a copy of his death certificate which lists his mother as A. Leigh. We know that Beaty named his first-born son Albert Lee Beaty. Also, the 1900 census shows a sister named Ellen Lee and a niece named Carrie Lee living in his household. These facts provide more evidence for Leigh/Lee as a family surname.
Beaty was born a slave and is believed to have come to Ohio in 1849 at around the age of 12. It is not known exactly when or how he was freed. He was listed as free in the first record I found of him: the 1860 federal census, where he is found living in the household of furniture maker Henry Boyd on June 18 in the thirteenth ward of Cincinnati.
It is thought that Beaty was apprenticed to Boyd, who had been a slave in Kentucky before coming to Cincinnati, where he became a prominent furniture maker known especially for his beds. The bed shown here is at the Golden Lamb in Lebanon. Boyd employed both black and white workers. He is buried in Spring Grove Cemetery. Beaty’s occupation in early records is usually given as turner or sawyer, both woodworking jobs.
Beaty is believed to have received schooling before this apprenticeship. He showed promise as a scholar and actor and is known to have studied with actor James E. Murdoch, who moved to the Cincinnati area around 1850.
In 1862, Beaty served in the Black Brigade formed to help protect Cincinnati from attack and in 1863 he enlisted as a private in the Union Army at Camp Delaware, Ohio. He was promoted to sergeant two days later. Beaty was awarded a medal of honor for his actions at the Battle of Chaffin’s Farm, where “took command of his company, all the officers having been killed or wounded, and gallantly led it.”
As impressive as Beaty’s military career was, we are more interested in, for the purposes of this presentation, his stage career. ” –To be continued….
Please come down to the main library in Cincinnati on Saturday, August 29 at 3 PM to hear more!! Looking forward to seeing you there!!