The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #941   Message #3044846
Posted By: GUEST,David Meyers
02-Dec-10 - 08:32 AM
Thread Name: Origins: The Preacher and the Bear
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Preacher and the Bear
I have been researching this song (and continue to do so). Joe Arzonia was the Americanized version of the name Joseph Ursone. Not only did he teach music in Columbus, but he owned a saloon in which he performed on the harp. Arthur Longbrake was a student at Ohio State and a musician as well who wrote a number of songs, both on his own and in conjunction with others. George Fairman, who had performed with minstrel shows, came to Columbus from Chicago where he had gotten into some trouble with the law.

Now, only Arzonia's name appears on the original sheet music, but when it was reprinted Longbrake's was added (and the lyrics do seem to be representative of his work). Fairman waited until both men were dead before he claimed he wrote the song. Of course, it is possible he sold it to them. However, it should be noted that Arzonia actually published one of Fairman's songs for him through his Capitol Music publishing company. And Longbrake and Fairman also wrote songs together. So if Fairman was credited on these, why wouldn't he have been credited on "The Preacher and the Bear"?