Ragtime music is a uniquely American genre. It developed in Black communities in the south during the end of the nineteenth century and has roots in the rhythmic traditions of African and Caribbean music. No less an authority than Scott Joplin declared that “ragtime should never be played fast”, a statement which not only reveals Joplin’s musical intention, but also suggests that there were musicians who did play it fast.

Because of its complex rhythms and often thick chromatic harmonies, much ragtime music requires multiple instruments to capture its character. The works in this category were selected because they could be adapted without losing musical integrity.