What’s the Matter Stephen Foster?

The Civil War probably killed Stephen Foster.  The most notable American composer of his time, in a day when copyright enforcement was nil, Foster always just managed to scratch out a precarious living.  As the beginning of the song indicates, with the coming of the War many of the songs he had written in peace were no longer in demand.

Broke and suffering from a persistent fever, deserted by his wife who had taken their daughter to live in Pittsburgh in 1861, Foster fell in his hotel room in New York City on January 10, 1864 and gashed his head on a wash basin.  He was admitted to Bellevue and died three days later, at age 37.  Ironically his most successful song, Beautiful Dreamer, was published a few months after his death: (more…)

Published in: on January 10, 2020 at 5:30 am  Comments (2)  
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