Scott Joplin was an American composer of ragtime, a form of syncopated piano music. He was born in Texas in 1868 and died in New York City in 1917. Joplin was responsible for bringing ragtime out of its red-light district origins and into respectability. Although not the first to compose ragtime, Joplin was one of the first African-American composer to have his works published. His works were extremely well-known in their day, especially his greatest, Maple Leaf Rag, which is still popular today. Extensive use of Joplin's works was made in the film The Sting featuring Paul Newman and Robert Redford. Complete information about Scott Joplin may be found in Edward A. Berlin's excellent biography King of Ragtime: Scott Joplin and his Era.
Last modified on August 16, 2000