Nothing but ......

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Nothing But The Blues XXVI

Today we turn to another representative of 'the most important female singers'. After Bessie Smith and Ma Rainey it's time to look at Memphis Minnie. Minnie was born as Lizzie Douglas in 1897. She used several stage names before she started using Memphis Minnie, which was 'invented' for her first recording for Columbia Records in the early 20's. She got this name as she was found by a talent scout on Beale Street, Memphis. At that time she had been touring from 1916 -1920 throughout the South and been 'playing' Beale Street for a few years. After she moved to Chicago she got to work with blues greats like Tampa Red and Big Bill Broonzy. Although Minnie's roots are obviously Country Blues she was able to survive all innovations to the Blues for a period of about 30 years. As a matter of fact she is one of the unknown, but great , innovators herself. In my earlier posting on Big Bill Broonzy I stated that Big Bill was one of the first to...... Well, Minnie was the first. She wasn't only the first female artist on an electrical guitar, but she was the first to produce the 'band sound' with bass, guitar, piano and drums. With this she laid the foundation for future blues greats like Willie Dixon, Howlin' Wolf and Muddy Waters. Minnie more or less retreated from the Blues scene in 1949. In 1957 she entered an old people's home after a heart attack, where she died in 1973. Leaving us with just over 200 recordings.
The tracks on this CD span a period of 12 years, from 1929 till 1941.
Track 1 was recorded in 1929 in New York together with her first husband Joe McCoy. Tracks 2 and 3 are also with Joe McCoy, but are from Memphis, 1930. Track 4: Chicago 1935; track 5: Chicago 1936; Track 6: same town, 1937; Tracks 7 and 8: Chicago 1940; Tracks 9,10,11 and 12 again Chicago, but 1941. Remarkable is that her, at that time former husband Joe McCoy, reappears on tracks 11 and 12. Track 2: Bumble Bee is a 1930 re-recording of her first early 20's recording on which her stage name Memphis Minnie was used for the first time.

The password = "scrooge".
Please delete these files within 24 hours. If you like this music buy the album and support the industry


  • thanks for the music!

    when do we get to jimmy yancey on this collection?

    Great Work Scrooge!

    By Anonymous ZimZum, at 6:08 pm  

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