Ragtime was the popular music genre that is said to have started around 1896 and reached it’s height in 1920. It included a style of playing music called syncopation, which is purposely playing a second rhythm slightly off the beat of the first rhythm. In the early 1900’s, a dance called the Cake Walk accompanied the music. During this dance, slaves would mock their masters, especially those who were rich. At the end of the dance, a cake was awarded to the slave(s) who were deemed to have had the best performance. Popular ragtime artists include Scott Joplin, who is credited with the Maple Leaf Rag, and Eubie Blake.