1402Re: Martha Copeland
- Sep 15, 2005
----- Original Message -----
From: "Robert Smith"
> Assuming that Ma Rainey didn't invent her own style, then it could have
> been singers of Martha's calibre who were Ma's inspiration.
> It would appear that singer-Martha made her last record:
> "I Ain't Your Hen, Mister Fly-Rooster" in 1928.
> The census-Martha would have been 60, no great age for
> a blues singer (the Norwegian singer Nora Brockstedt has
> just issued her first jazz album at 82 years of age).
Maybe I'm thick, but I really don't get what age has to do with blues
singing. I guess it means something if we're trying to know how old were
most vaudeville singers when they started adding blues to their repertoire,
but I think it is less interesting than noting *when* blues songs became a
significant part of their recorded work.
I haven't checked that yet, but I once listed 47 of the most famous "old"
male blues singer-guitarists who recorded between 1924 and 1930, and found
out that most of them were around 21 when they first had a chance to hear
Mamie Smith's Crazy Blues - none of them above 33! The older I get, the more
I wonder what's left of the speculation you can read in any encyclopaedia
stating that so-called "folk blues" gave birth to jazz ;)
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