Percy Wenrich

Percy Wenrich (January 23, 1887 – March 17, 1952) was a United States composer of ragtime and popular music.

Born in Joplin, Missouri to Daniel Wenrich and Mary Ray, he left for Chicago in 1901 where he attended classes at the Chicago Musical College. Wenrich moved on to New York City around 1907 to work as a Tin Pan Alley composer, but his music retains a Missouri folk flavor. He composed at least eighteen rags, including "Ashy Africa," "Noodles," "Peaches and Cream" (1905), "Crab Apples," and "The Smiler" (1907). His songs include "Wabash Avenue After Dark" and the hits "Put on Your Old Grey Bonnet" (1909, lyrics by Stanley Murphy), "When You Wore a Tulip and I Wore a Big Red Rose" (1914, lyrics by Jack Mahoney) and "Minnetonka" (1921, lyrics by Gus Kahn).

"If It's Good Enough for Washington It's Good Enough for Me" (1908, lyrics by Ren Shields) was a song about a homeless man sleeping on a bench in a public square with statues of Washington, Jefferson, McKinley, Grant and Lee.

If it's good enough for Washington, It's good enough for me,

I'm proud that I am here tonight to keep him company,

I'm proud to sleep out with the man that set our country free,

If it's good enough for Washington, it's good enough for me.

Wenrich married vaudeville performer Dolly Connolly and in 1911 wrote the hit "Red Rose Rag" for her with lyrics by Edward Madden. In 1912, Wenrich and Madden had another hit with "Moonlight Bay." Wenrich and Connolly toured together for many years.

In the late 1930s, Wenrich and several of his fellow hitmakers formed a sensational review called "Songwriters on Parade", performing all across the Eastern seaboard on the Loew's and Keith circuits.

Wenrich's last memorable song "Sail Along, Silv'ry Moon" was published in 1937. He died in New York City in 1952 at the age of 65.

Birth and Death Data: Born January 23rd, 1887 (Joplin), Died New York City

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1903 - 1940

Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, lyricist, songwriter, tenor vocal

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 244 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor [Pre-matrix A-]2027 7-in. ca. 1903 Put on your old gray bonnet Harry Macdonough Male vocal solo composer  
Victor B-3382 10-in. 5/11/1906 Peaches and cream Ada Jones ; Len Spencer Descriptive scene and vocal, with orchestra composer  
Victor E-3382 8-in. 5/11/1906 Peaches and cream Ada Jones ; Len Spencer Descriptive scene and vocal, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-4918 10-in. 11/9/1907 The smiler Ossman Trio Instrumental trio composer  
Victor B-6383 10-in. 9/2/1908 Rainbow Haydn Quartet ; Billy Murray Male vocal solo and male vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-6387 10-in. 9/3/1908 Rainbow Victor Orchestra Orchestra composer  
Victor E-6387 8-in. 9/10/1908 Rainbow Victor Orchestra Orchestra composer  
Victor B-6504 10-in. 10/5/1908 Persian lamb rag Vess L. Ossman Banjo solo, with piano composer  
Victor B-6763 10-in. 2/1/1909 Naughty eyes Billy Murray Male vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-7037 10-in. 5/4/1909 The flower girl Arthur Pryor's Band Band composer  
Victor B-7057 10-in. 5/7/1909 Sweetmeats two-step Arthur Pryor's Band Band composer  
Victor B-7063 10-in. 5/11/1909 The recipe for love Frank C. Stanley ; Elise Stevenson Female-male vocal duet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-8079 10-in. 6/28/1909 Dublin daisies Peerless Quartet Male vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-8243 10-in. 9/21/1909 Dublin daisies march Arthur Pryor's Band Band composer  
Victor B-8297 10-in. 10/14/1909 Put on your old grey bonnet Haydn Quartet Male vocal quartet composer  
Victor B-8429 10-in. 12/7/1909 Jungle moon Arthur Pryor's Band Band composer  
Victor B-8432 10-in. 12/8/1909 Lilac blossoms Arthur Pryor's Band Band composer  
Victor B-8671 10-in. 3/1/1910 Smiler rag Victor Orchestra Orchestra composer  
Victor B-8989 10-in. 5/24/1910 Silver bell Peerless Quartet Male vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-9036 10-in. 5/31/1910 Sugar moon Collins and Harlan Male vocal duet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-9385 10-in. 8/29/1910 Mandy, how do you do? Ada Jones ; Billy Murray Female-male vocal duet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-9582 10-in. 10/26/1910 Silver bell "That Girl" Quartet Female vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-9708 10-in. 12/13/1910 Silver bell Haydn Quartet Male vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-9987 10-in. 2/21/1911 Alamo rag "That Girl" Quartet Female vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
Victor B-10020 10-in. 3/1/1911 Alamo rag Peerless Quartet Male vocal quartet, with orchestra composer  
(Results 1-25 of 244 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Wenrich, Percy," accessed October 25, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/105790.

Wenrich, Percy. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved October 25, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/105790.

"Wenrich, Percy." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 25 October 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/105790

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