Tune of the Day: Li'l Liza Jane
Also known as “Little Liza Jane”, this song was first published in San Francisco, California in 1916, as a composition by Countess Ada de Lachau. The song's origins, however, seem to go back even earlier. The tune's similarity to the 1850 Stephen Foster standard “Camptown Races” has been observed. The name “Liza Jane” was a standard female character name in minstrel shows.
“Li'l Liza Jane” has become a perennial standard both as a song and an instrumental in traditional jazz, folk music, and bluegrass, and versions have repeatedly appeared in other genres including rock and roll. It is one of the standards of the New Orleans brass band tradition.