Tune of the Day: Red Pepper
Published in 1910, “Red Pepper” is indeed a spicy rag well in keeping with the jolly cakewalking red peppers as illustrated on the front cover of the original sheet music.
Its composer was Thomas Henry Lodge (now better known as Henry Lodge), an American piano performer and composer of popular music. With the hits “Temptation Rag”, “Sure Fire Rag” and “Red Pepper” he established himself selling music in stores and on the vaudeville circuit. He worked in bars and cabarets before eventually becoming the pianist of the well-known dancers, Irene and Vernon Castle. In all his work, Lodge was fascinated with the minor tonality, and made more creative use of it than any other ragtime composer.