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Columbia Original Masters

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Album Review

Memphis Minnie held her own in a genre famous for its casualties, and as a blues guitarist, few players in the 1920s could cut her, and that, coupled with Minnie's natural showmanship and a penchant for marrying her guitar duet partners (Casey Bill Weldon, Kansas Joe McCoy, Ernest Lawlars), makes her one of the most colorful figures in blues history. This set brings together key tracks that she recorded for Columbia Records between 1933 and 1937, but it's just a small part of this musician's prolific recording catalog (she also recorded for the Bluebird, OKeh, Vocalion, Regal, Checker, and JOB imprints during her four-decade career). The sound is good, though, which makes this a nice place to start.


Born: 03 June 1897 in Algiers, LA

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s

Tracking down the ultimate woman blues guitar hero is problematic because woman blues singers seldom recorded as guitar players and woman guitar players (such as Rosetta Tharpe and Sister O.M. Terrell) were seldom recorded playing blues. Excluding contemporary artists, the most notable exception to this pattern was Memphis Minnie. The most popular and prolific blueswoman outside the vaudeville tradition, she earned the respect of critics, the support of record-buying fans, and the unqualified praise...
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Columbia Original Masters, Memphis Minnie
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