Around this time, Rainey met Bessie Smith, a young blues singer who was also making a name for herself. In 1956 she retired from singing and became a nurse. Try a little tenderness - Aretha Franklin 3. She made more than 100 other recordings over the next five years, which brought her fame beyond the South. Her employees were not permitted to drink alcohol during the evening of the show. This pattern of incorporating various styles of entertainment were typical of early blues performers and other African American musicians of the time.
She was billed as the Mother of the Blues. Santa Barbara, California: Praeger Publishers. In the promotional image for the song, Rainey is drawn wearing a suit and a hat, speaking with a few women as a policeman eyes her. One of the few times her flair for comedy comes through is in her widely popular Ma Rainey's Black Bottom 1927. During the good years Ma traveled in her own railroad car and was addressed as Madame Rainey. Ann Short Chirhart and Kathleen Ann Clark Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2014.
She was later inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Georgia Music Hall of Fame, and Georgia Women of Achievement. Ya ya - Lee Dorsey 13. Ma Rainey Gertrude Pridgett was born into a showbiz family that performed in minstrel shows. Complete Recorded Works in Chronological Order, vol. She joined the Friendship Baptist Church, where her brother was a deacon.
The Big Book of Blues. Reeling from fierce competition from talkies and the overall centralization of the entertainment industry, the T. Poets and both alluded to her in their works. Ma Rainey did most of her recording in Chicago, where she maintained an apartment in the old Angelus Building on the corner of 35th and Wabash. Strawberry letter 23 - The Brothers Johnson 1. Walking on stage, she made an incredible impression before she even began singing, with her thick straightened hair sticking out all over, her huge teeth capped in gold, an ostrich plume in her hand, and a long triple necklace of shining gold coins sparkling against her sequined dress.
She was signed on with Columbia records in 1925. Wintering in , she met numerous musicians, including , , and. The crowd went wild, calling Ma back for seven curtain calls. The lyrics, like those of many blues songs, focused on romantic relationships; they also discussed drinking and traveling as well as the African-American folk magic known as. Body talk - Imagination 5. In 1923, Rainey was discovered by Paramount Records producer J. Beginning in 1914, the Raineys were billed as Rainey and Rainey, Assassinators of the Blues.
It's a shame - The Spinners 16. From the late 1910s, there was an increasing demand for recordings by black musicians. She was accompanied by the bandleader and pianist and the band he assembled, the Wildcats Jazz Band. Her obituary described her as a housekeeper but her recording legacy continues to influence successive generations of musicians. She died of heart disease in 1939, at age fifty-three, and was buried in Porterdale Cemetery in Columbus. When this show fell apart on the road in 1930, Ma joined the stumbling Bandanna Babes.
She went on to record more then 150 songs. The storm start to raging, you try to run here and run there and get away. Her performances thrilled audiences, putting her on the path to become one of the early blues greats. Her early discs— Bo-weavil Blues 1923 and Moonshine Blues 1923 —soon spread her reputation outside the South. She continued working until 1935 and retired to Columbus, Georgia. A story later developed that Rainey kidnapped Smith, forced her to join the Rabbit's Foot Minstrels, and taught her to sing the blues; the story was disputed by Smith's sister-in-law Maud Smith. She continued to tour until 1935, when she retired and went to live in her hometown.
Bessie Smith was better served by the recording process; her records had clearer sound and more musical quality than many of Ma Rainey's efforts, which were low-fidelity even in 1920's terms. Then the whole troupe participated in the grand finale. Too Late, Too Late, vol. The couple hit the road, performing song-and-dance routines for a variety of black minstrel troupes that worked under tents. My Aunt Dora Mae Rainey Ballard told me before she died that my great grand aunt was on a Postage stamp. Around this period, a young chorus girl named Bessie Smith joined the troupe. If you need me - Wilson Pickett 19.
As the popularity of blues music increased, she became well known. Few historians can point to any real Blues singers before Ma Rainey. Their shows included chorus lines, acrobats, and comedy acts. She often recorded songs for Paramount with her Blues pianist husband Jesse Crump. The biggest mistake - Vivian Reed 17. A popular blues singer in the 1920s was Ida Cox.
A fringe of wiry hair peaking out from under a glittering beaded headband, she was famous for her gold teeth, feathers boas and plumes, glittering diamonds, necklace of gold coins, and fondness for Coca Cola. Falling for that feeling - Joe Dolan 17. Between 1921 and 1924 she recorded songs for the Black Swan label. I'm shakin' - Little Willie John 10. She said that Ma played with some of the most famous bands during that time and that she was the mother of the blues. She had at least two brothers and a sister named Malissa, with whom Gertrude was later confused in some sources. In 1916, Rainey began performing without her husband because the two had separated.