“I’d rather be on old Broadway with you”

So goes the title of this 1909 hit, about a man stuck in the sticks one summer, wishing he were back in New York City with his girl:

Oldbroadwaysheetmusic“I’d rather be on old Broadway with you, dear

where life is gay and no one seems to care;

This shady lane and summer sky so blue, dear

Does not appear to me like Herald Square.”

That must be rain-slicked 42nd Street on the cover of the sheet music, with theaters and the old crosstown trolley in the distance.

The publisher, Joseph W. Stern, was a lyricist himself who launched his own music publishing company, first on 14th Street, capitalizing on the popularity of ragtime  at the turn of the 20th century.

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One Response to ““I’d rather be on old Broadway with you””

  1. Kaz Says:

    Just an illusion caused by my tired eyes, but the illustration looks like the entire block is aflame. Isn’t it romantic!

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