Category Archives: schottische

Slightly on the Mash

This is a recording of an 1885 song called “Slightly on the Mash”. It’s a happy number for drinking, dancing and goofing off.

Slightly on the Mash Schottische


It was

written by
A. G. Send,

arranged for guitar by the enigmatic
E. Pique,


published by
J. Oettl


I didn’t find any biographical info or other work by these people.

The performance is

guitar playing
by L. Gonze, a.k.a. me,
and the recoding was released on May 7, 2008.

The dedication on the sheet music is darn nice:

to my Esteemed Friend Pianissimo, Guadalupe, Cal.

What was going on in Guadalupe, California in 1885? Wikipedia says The Guadalupe Watershed was an area of intense activity during the California Gold Rush, with the quicksilver mines within Santa Clara County supporting the gold refinement process. Maybe Pianissimo was a musician who had gone west to strike it rich.


This song is a dance called a schottische. Per Wikipedia, Schottische was popular in Victorian era ballrooms (part of the Bohemian “folk-dance” craze) and left its traces in folk music of countries as distant as France, Spain (chotis), Portugal (chouti├ža), Italy and Sweden.

Musically this is an intricate little tune which feels like an evolutionary step on the way to ragtime and eventually jazz. Wikipedia says At the start of the 20th century in the Southern United States the schottische was combined with ragtime; the most popular “ragtime schottische” of the era was “Any Rags” by Thomas S. Allen in 1902.

If you want to dance along at home, it goes like this: step step step hop, step step step hop, step hop step hop step hop step hop. Posh dancers did it like this:

Knuckledraggers were probably more like this:

Playing along

I learned this song from sheet music at the Library of Congress. It’s not a beginner piece, but it’s pretty approachable.
The embedded images here are linked to full-size PDFs, so click through if you want a printout to learn from.
Here’s the cover sheet, which was printed in cheapo black and white:
slightly on the mash cover sheet
Here’s the part, which is a short one-pager:
slightly on the mash page 1

Free culture

free culture seal

There is an Ogg Vorbis version of the audio file and an Ogg FLAC version.

There is code to embed a player for the song in another web page:

This page uses the hAudio microformat.
This recording is copyright 2008 by Lucas Gonze and released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States license. You are free to share or remix it as long as you give attribution and apply the same terms to works based on this one. If you need another license for some reason just contact me and we’ll arrange it.
You are welcome to link directly to any file I host, including MP3s. No need to host a copy to spare my bandwidth.
If you do a version of this and want a link here, let me know.