Ma Sarraphine; supplement to the San Francisco Examiner, March 27, 1898
San Francisco: Hearst Corporation, 1897. 4p. sheet music, 10.5x14 inches, even toning, otherwise very good, illustrated with a color drawing of a well-dressed African American couple.
“I sends da lady flowers, an’ I’se gwine to claim her hand / shouted the new Darktown bully in a sassy tone / An’ I want yo’ low down niggas to clearly understand / that I’s here tonight to see this lady home.” A razor fight follows, and the song’s hero defeats this bully for the favors of Sarraphine, “the dusky queen of stage-land.” Aspden, a supporter of the Socialist Labor Party, was a regular performer in 1890s San Francisco; an 1896 article in the San Francisco Call notes that she was to perform violin and sing for a May Day event co-sponsored by several unions in which “The procession will be headed by a band, and over the column will float the red flag of the socialists. The latter disclaim that the crimson banner is an emblem of blood, violence and anarchy, and say it is the emblem of peace and universal brotherhood.”.