Originally posted by wolfindmist:
This Eubie video is really great. I hope I do get to a ripe age and still play half as well as he does here. His voice is still there also. Thanks to Music Lover for sharing this find.
I'm glad to see somebody else give the great Eubie Blake a mention. Considering his age, I thought his playing was excellent, and his voice definitely better than one would expect of someone past 90. An impressive performance for a person that old.
I recall a humorous true story he told during a television interview many years ago. I'm not sure of the exact location, but he was in a room with several "high society" type white women, who had no idea he was a very accomplished ragtime, jazz and pop pianist.
There was a piano in the room, which Eubie walked over to admire. A couple of the women immediately started making condescending remarks toward him, because they didn't think a black person could possibly know how to play a piano very well, if at all. So the sly, good-natured Eubie pretended to be extremely ignorant, asking loudly--"Is this a Pie-Anna?!"
He sat down at the piano, banged on a few random keys---then started belting out some of the finest ragtime piano pieces you've ever heard in your life. Of course, the jaws of the women practically dropped to the floor. They became quite embarrassed when they realized he could play circles around any of them, and had made them look completely foolish. Classic Eubie!