Ragtime介绍了一种流行于美国十九世纪左右名为ragtime的音乐，能够表现年青人的活力(spirit of youth)之类的，此乐流行是由于piano的关系，因为两者真是太搭配了。在那个年代，在各种场合都用钢琴。此乐当时流行程度，(like Rock & Roll在某一时期一样)。这里出现考点，女学生说了一堆后，来了一句 I just don't get it，意思是要教授explain，还说piano 之所以当时那么受欢迎，一是因为它能与音律产生和谐，另一是因为当时它算一种财富地位的象征什么的symbol of wealth and status。再加上，那个年代，大家都没钱，就去public concert or restaurant什么的听音乐，而piano声音够响亮，又和ragtime music rhythm搭配的天衣无缝，所以，两者相得益彰这个音乐年轻人很喜欢，因为很有激情。除了到处演出啊，park演出等不用钢琴，因为难搬(出现考点)because of transportation problem。 同时，此乐也是 jazz的前身，因为演奏者不按牌理出牌，一首曲七个人弹，弹出七种调。这种regtime音乐影响很远啊，例如现在的jazz就是从那发展来的。
Ragtime is an American musical genre which enjoyed its peak popularity between 1899 and 1918. It has had several periods of revival since then and is still being composed today. Ragtime was the first truly American musical genre, predating jazz. It began as dance music in popular music settings years before being published as popular sheet music for piano. Being a modification of the then popular march, it was usually written in 2/4 or 4/4 time (meter) with a predominant left hand pattern of bass notes on odd-numbered beats and chords on even-numbered beats accompanying a syncopated melody in the right hand. A composition in this style is called a "rag". A rag written in 3/4 time is a "ragtime waltz".
Ragtime is not a "time" (meter) in the same sense that march time is 2/4 meter and waltz time is 3/4 meter; it is rather a musical genre that uses an effect that can be applied to any meter. The defining characteristic of ragtime music is a specific type of syncopation in which melodic accents fall between metrical beats. This results in a melody that seems to be avoiding some metrical beats of the accompaniment by emphasizing notes that either anticipate or follow the beat. The ultimate (and intended) effect on the listener is actually to accentuate the beat, thereby inducing the listener to move to the music. Scott Joplin, the composer/pianist known as the "King of Ragtime", called the effect "weird and intoxicating". He also used the term "swing" in describing how to play ragtime music: "Play slowly until you catch the swing...". The name swing later came to be applied to an early genre of jazz that developed from ragtime. Converting a non-ragtime piece of music into ragtime by changing the time values of melody notes is known as "ragging" the piece. Original ragtime pieces usually contain several distinct themes, four being the most common number.