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Under the Ragtime Moon

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Customer Reviews

Ian Whitcomb begins his novelty-song career

What a delight to find this 1972 LP here on iTunes. Ian Whitcomb, infamous for his 60s hit "You Turn Me On," and celebrated for his written histories of pop music, turned in the 1970s to ragtime and old-fashioned novelty songs. This early effort in his new genre, produced by the Bonzo Dog Band's Neil Innes, brings together many obscure and nostalgic titles from the early 20th century. Backed up by a hot little ragtime band, Whitcomb covers a variety of topics and genres including WW1 songs, Hawaiian songs, women's rights, dance crazes, etc. If you enjoy the sound of the soundtrack from 'The Sting' and you have a whimsical sense of humor, you'll love this album. Trivia bit: the iTunes release restores a track which was expunged from the original American LP release (track 2), and the complete album art has also been restored. I always wondered why there was a big blank space on my LP cover. (See eBay auctions for how the album looked in the 1972 US release.)


Born: July 10, 1941 in Woking, Surrey, England

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

An odd footnote to the British Invasion, English singer and pianist Ian Whitcomb formed his R&B group Bluesville in Dublin, Ireland. He never had a hit in the U.K. and wasn't all that wild about rock & roll in the first place, preferring traditional forms of blues, ragtime, and Tin Pan Alley. But "You Turn Me On" -- a tongue-in-cheek three-chord knockoff at the end of a session with exaggerated falsetto vocals and an unforgettable orgasmic vocal hook -- hit number eight in America in 1965, and Whitcomb...
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Under the Ragtime Moon, Ian Whitcomb
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