Musicnotes Coupon and a Musicology Ramble

Musicnotes Coupon and a Musicology Ramble

The following post is brought to you by old sheet music and sheer music nerdiness. 

As I was purchasing some scores on yesterday, I noticed that they had a 14% off code for all digital music. (MNLOVE18). Get it? “I’m in love…” Ha! Well, someone at Musicnotes seems to have sense of humor, and it wasn’t limited to coupon codes.

The free digital download for the month of February is the mid-1800s song by J. C. Beckel, “I Wish I Were Single Again.” Hats off to the staff. Well done. 

After reading the hilariously awful lyrics in “I Wish I Were Single Again,” I was curious to know more about J.C. Beckel. 

So I did a little digging, ’cause #musicologist, and here’s what I found: 

  • According to the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Special Collections, James Cox Beckel lived from 1811-1880. He was an organist in Philadelphia. In addition to writing that lovely ditty, he also wrote several songs about the Civil War. Source.
  • Those pieces can be found in the Civil War Sheet Music Collection in the Library of Congress.
  • Also found out that Beckel wrote a piano method book called The Amateur’s School for the Piano. It was listed in the 1875 edition of The Publishers’ Trade List Annual.  Check it out here. (You’ll have to click to the “next result” to see the method book listing.)
  • And finally, the Ingalls Wilder Family Songbook had some more details about “I Wish I Were Single Again.” 

As you might have gathered from the above ramble, I’m an absolute sucker for piano/voice sheet music from the late 1800s and early 1900s. We inherited a beautiful pile of sheet music goodies from my husband’s grandmother. Here’s a glimpse of some of the pieces that I happened to have on my cell phone. (click to enlarge)

 Sadly, I didn’t find an image for “I Wish I Were Single Again,” so we’ll have to leave the cover art to our imaginations. 

Happy almost Valentine’s Day. 

The beautiful image you see on this post is from

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