Another genre immensely popular by the late 1800s was Ragtime. This music, mainly developed in Joplin, MO (roughly 3 hours south of my hometown of Kansas City), is primarily credited to Scott Joplin.
The rhythms in ragtime were heavily developed by the predecessor to the banjo: the akonting. The syncopated rhythms attributed to this instrument transferred themselves over to help create ragtime. The phrase "ragtime" itself represents the ragged timing of the music. Two interesting things to point out: 1) Scott Joplin didn't believe ragtime should be played quickly and 2) Joplin was among the first to record his own music because around this time is when the first recording technology was invented.
Ragtime did influence jazz, but only to the extent of rhythm. All ragtime music was through-composed in that there weren't any solos, nor did it swing. The form of the music was very similar to the march music of brass bands that we talked about yesterday.
The popularity of ragtime came about in 1893 during the World's Fair/Colombian Exposition. At this event held in commemoration of Columbus and Chicago's rise from the Great Fire were many locations for musicians to set up and perform. Near Midway (away from the fairgrounds), Joplin had set up a piano and began performing his music, exposing an immense number of people to the music. I can only imagine if he were to get a booth within the fairgrounds and reach a larger audience, what kind of music we'd be listening to today.
By 1897, the Maple Leaf Rag was our equivilant of "Baby," "Friday," or "Call Me Maybe." Everyone in the United States was listening to this song. The sheet music for this was the first to sell over one million copies. This popularity got many people interested in playing the piano and made it normal for a house to have a piano.
Because people were wanting to hear this music all the time, brass bands began getting requests for ragtime (lil, this is where the comment you made yesterday comes in). These requests are what meshed the two genres together to create the infancy of jazz. In fact, John Phillips Sousa began arranging ragtime tunes for brass bands. Over time, brass bands began getting smaller and smaller (more similar to what we see today in jazz bands) and the melodies to these songs become more embellished (similar to the jazz of Louis Armstrong).
By 1916, the sounds and set ups of modern jazz bands really start to settle into a standard. Down Home Rag consisted of a small band common to what we'd see today. By making bands smaller, bands became more mobile and thus began doing more indoor shows. Because you can't really bring a large bass drum inside, the drum set sees and evolution. Bass drums were still larger than those of today, but the kit as whole becomes more mobile.
"I say, play your own way. Don’t play what the public wants. You play what you want and let the public pick up on what you’re doing, even if it does take them fifteen, twenty years. " - Thelonius Monk