I’m Just a Ragged Newsboy

One of my siblings has made a remarkable discovery. If you look in the lower righthand corner of the old piece of sheet music pictured above, you’ll see a round photo. The photo is of my grandfather as a young man.

The music was published in 1906 and, frankly, that picture bears no more resemblance to what my grandfather looked like in 1906 than I do to the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer lion. It’s from much earlier, probably when he was a teenager before the turn of the century.

The music was published by a St. Louis company and I surmise that he must have been a song plugger for them. I’m no expert on the subject but I can’t help but wonder if it wouldn’t take more than that to get your picture on the music. I wonder if he didn’t make a commercial recording of the song. Now that would be fascinating to have. I have no idea what my grandfather sounded like since he died long before I was born. I’m told he had a beautiful singing voice.

Source of digitized image: University of Oregon Libraries

3 comments… add one
  • michael reynolds

    You know, you do look a little bit like the MGM lion.

    Royalties, dude. Maybe Iron Maiden covered this song and you don’t even know.

  • You know, you do look a little bit like the MGM lion.

    It’s the mustache.

  • jan

    We have an old restored player piano, along with a hundred or so original player rolls. My Grand mother’s favorite, for instance, was “Let Me Call you Sweetheart.” The name on the pictured music above, reminds me of some of the sentimental old-fashioned music titles found in these early melodies — so different from what we listen to today!

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