Coal City, West Virginia

Coal City is a census-designated place in Raleigh County, West Virginia, United States. The population was 1,815 at the 2010 census. Coal City's population is composed of other surrounding unincorporated communities; the community was so named on account of the local coal-mining industry. Coal City is located at 37°41′8″N 81°12′37″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP known as Coal City has a total area of 6.3 square miles, all of it land. As of the census of 2000, there were 1,905 people, 794 households, 578 families residing in Coal City; the population density was 303.8 people per square mile. There were 845 housing units at an average density of 134.7/sq mi. The racial makeup of the CDP was 98.22% White, 0.37% African American, 0.05% Asian, 0.21% from other races, 1.15% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.05% of the population. There were 794 households out of which 24.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.2% were married couples living together, 9.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 27.1% were non-families.

24.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.5% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.84. In the CDP, the population was spread out with 19.9% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 26.0% from 25 to 44, 27.2% from 45 to 64, 18.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.7 males. The median income for a household in the CDP was $28,049, the median income for a family was $33,897. Males had a median income of $29,338 versus $16,548 for females; the per capita income for the CDP was $14,552. About 8.6% of families and 12.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.5% of those under age 18 and 11.8% of those age 65 or over

Hughie Cannon

Hugo Cannon, publishing as Hughie Cannon, was an American songwriter and pianist whose best-known composition was the popular ragtime song " Bill Bailey". Cannon was born in Detroit, Michigan in 1877, he began performing with Barlow's Minstrels in the 1890s, as a singer and piano player working with actor John Queen and having several songs published. He worked as a bar pianist in Jackson, where he met local musician Willard "Bill" Bailey. On one occasion in 1902, Bailey was talking to Cannon about the state of his marriage to Sarah. Cannon "was inspired to rattle off a ditty about Bailey’s irregular hours. Bailey thought the song was a scream, he brought home a dashed-off copy of the song to show Sarah. Sarah couldn’t see the humor.... Accepted without comment the picture it drew of her as a wife." Cannon sold all rights to the song to a New York publisher. The tune is similar to an earlier song, "Ain't Dat a Shame" credited to Walter Wilson. After publication the song became a hit and a standard, has been covered many times since by a wide range of singers, including Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Pearl Bailey, Marion Montgomery, Aretha Franklin, Bobby Darin.

The song became an instant success following its first performance by John Queen. Another of the author's long-lasting hits is "Frankie and Johnny", published in 1904. Cannon wrote the featured song "I Love the Two Steps" for the New York show'Mrs. Black Is Back', which opened in 1904 and ran for 79 performances. Mrs. Black was played by May Irwin, who appeared in one of Thomas Edison's earliest productions, "The Kiss." Cannon wrote music for "A Venetian Romance" at the Knickerbocker Theater. Cannon's other songs include "For Lawdy Sakes, Feed My Dog," "I Hates To Get Up Early In The Morning", "Possum Pie", "Just Because She Made Dem Goo-Goo Eyes" and "You Needn't Come Home." Cannon died at the age of 35 at the Lucas County, Infirmary. The official cause of death was cirrhosis of the liver. Not long before his death, Cannon told a Detroit newspaper that he sold off the rights to most of his songs. In a letter to his mother he lamented "the songs I once had." He told the same newspaper that while he used drugs, it was alcohol, the hardest to kick.

A brief marriage to Emma Dorson ended in divorce, the final decree handed to her just hours after his death. Cannon died penniless, he was buried in Connellsville, where his mother lived. His mother, May Brown Cannon Smith Robbins, had been in show business and had played the role of "Little Trixie" in a production that toured the nation for several years in the late 1800s. By the time her son became a well-known composer she was managing a theater in Connellsville with the help of her third husband Fred G. Robbins. Not much is known about John Cannon. Musicologist Peter Muir remarked that "You Needn't Come Home" was "truly remarkable for 1901" for its unusual use of 12-bar arrangements for both chorus and verse. "In terms of popular songs at the turn of the century, the enterprise, to the best of my knowledge, is quite unique." Thornton Hagert, in 1971, noted Cannon's use of a 12-bar structure. "A few" of Cannon's better-known songs, Hagert found, "are close to the classic blues structure." Two years after "Bill Bailey" swept the nation, Cannon composed a tune called "He Done Me Wrong."

This "death of Bill Bailey" tune is sad, Muir noting "a powerful ambivalence found in the blues." Muir argued that Cannon's "music represents in its way the birth of commercial blues in American culture." Hugo "Hughie" Cannon on Imdb for 1904 show "Mrs. Black Is Back" with music by Hughie Cannon Works by Hughie Cannon at Project Gutenberg Works by or about Hughie Cannon at Internet Archive