Gertrude ‘Ma Rainey’ Pridgett : Mother of the Blues


Ma Rainey and Fan


Ma Rainey and Band
                             Ma Rainey and Band

Birth: April 26, 1886 in Columbus, Georgia Parents : Minstrel Troupers Thomas Pridgett, Sr. and Ella Allen-Pridgett Siblings: Second of five children; 3 brothers and one sister, Melissa Spouse:William “Pa” Rainey Works:Recorded over 100 songs for her label Paramount Records including “Bad Luck Blues,” “Bo Weevil Blues,” “Moonshine Blues,” all made in 1928; “Jelly Bean Blues,” “Countin’ the Blues,” and “See-See, Rider” with Louis Armstrong in 1924 Occupation: Professional Blues Singer; among the first generation of  blues singers to record and her band was called “Assassinators of the Blues” Contributions and Achievements:First Woman to incorporate Blues into vaudeville, tent, and minstrel shows  : Awards: Inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame and the  Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 1990; “See See Rider” inducted into Grammy Hall of Fame in 2004, and in 1994 issued a 29-cent commemorative postal stamp by the U.S. postal service Others facts about Ma: Debut performance at age 14 in “A Bunch of Blackberries”  and ran two theaters, “The Lyric” and “The Airdome” in Columbus after the Blues faded in popularity, Playright August Wilson wrote a play called “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” which portrays race relations in the 1920s. Death: December 22, 1939 at age 53 of a heart attack in Rome, Georgia

I salute this AMAZING HER-story making sista! Sources: Ma Rainey Bio from Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame Website Ma Rainey Bio from Wikipedia


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