Search - Ma Rainey :: Blackbottom

Ma Rainey
Genres: Country, Blues, Folk, Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (14) - Disc #1

The classic blues belter had been singing for two decades before she ever put her voice on record, and it shows on these recordings from the mid- to late '20s. The archetypal blues shouter, Rainey had a voice whose depth a...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Ma Rainey
Title: Blackbottom
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Yazoo
Original Release Date: 1/1/1991
Re-Release Date: 7/1/1991
Genres: Country, Blues, Folk, Jazz, Pop
Styles: Vocal Blues, Traditional Blues, Acoustic Blues, Traditional Folk, Traditional Jazz & Ragtime
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 016351017123, 016350107146, 803680473955

The classic blues belter had been singing for two decades before she ever put her voice on record, and it shows on these recordings from the mid- to late '20s. The archetypal blues shouter, Rainey had a voice whose depth and strength is startling and sometimes alarming, even on these scratchy old recordings--one can only imagine what she must have sounded like in real life. Her backup musicians include such notables as pianist Fletcher Henderson, trombonist Charlie Green, guitarist Tampa Red, and trombonist Kid Ory, all performing fairly straightforward 12-bar blues. It's not the material here that's notable, so much as Rainey's voice, a voice that has informed the work of female blues singers ever since. --Genevieve Williams

CD Reviews

Hooray for Gertrude "Ma" Rainey's Black Bottom!!!
roarin20sGuy | 09/21/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Usually compilation CD's are not up to par, for collectors standards, however this is an excellent sampler of Gertrude "Ma" Rainey's finest sessions put out by surprisingly a US label Yazoo Records. Lovie Austin & Her Serenaders are featured here backing Rainey, as well as many other 20's jazz musicians. Ma Rainey was perhaphs the finest blues singer to emerge from the "blues craze" of the roarin' 20's. Rainey who was Bessie Smith's vocal coach, was singing the blues yaers before the 20's "blues craze," Rainey who was a popular vaudeville entertainer would always include blues numbers in her act long before, Mamie Smith started the 20's blues craze with "Crazy Blues." Rainey sings some blues and some popular jazz from the era like "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" and "The Georgia Cakewalk." There is also a dirty blues "Shave Em' Dry." Some other classics are "Oh Papa", "Blues Oh Blues" and "Don't Fish In My Sea" are essential. Every song on this CD is a classic, making this set essential for beginners as well as the collector who will want all the goodies on one CD. Heck I already have her complete chronological series on the European Ducument label and I still recommend this gem.Also if you already are a fan of Ma Rainey, go see a newer artist by the name of Big Mama Sue, who sings(and is very influenced by Ma Rainey) and plays washboard in the 20's blues and dixieland tradition, she's often at Dixieland Festivals, listen to her and find out where she's playing at"
The cream of Ma Rainey's crop
Docendo Discimus | Vita scholae | 07/29/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Gertrude 'Ma' Rainey was billed by her record company as the "Mother of the Blues" (something which pleased her greatly), and although there was blues and blues singers even before her, she was certainly one of the genres most important trailblazers."Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" is a fine collection of 14 of Ma Rainey's best songs recorded between 1924 and 1928. She was a powerful and expressive singer, and she is backed here by various brass- and/or string bands (Kid Ory, Coleman Hawkins and Tom Dorsey being credited among the musicians).The sound quality on these recordings, of which some are almost 80 years old, is surprisingly good, and among the highlights are "Shave 'Em Dry Blues", "Yonder Come The Blues" and the title track.
This is highly recommendable to anyone with an interest in early blues, or even jazz."
Ma Rainey Should Sing Forever
A. W. Bellais | Savannah, GA USA | 05/24/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Here is a hot CD! Ma Rainey is recaptured in all her richness. What a great listening experience, especially for those who love to hear the African American sound the way it was! No wonder August Wilson found such a wonderful tapestry on which to draw his play -- the music on this CD wants to be heard again and again."