Female Blues Singers – Various Artists – Complete Recorded Works – Vol 6 E/F/G (1922-1929)
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This volume features a mixture of styles from the down-home vocals of Dorothy Everetts to the precise performance of Cry Baby Godfrey whose vocals are typical of vaudeville where so many Classic Blues singers tread the boards. As with all of the volumes in this series, there are some great accompanists here including Porter Granger, Eubie Blake and Bubber Miley. The female blues singers who made records in the 1920s and early 1930 are often simplistically characterized as “vaudeville” artists. This series of fourteen, concentrating on singers who made only a handful of recordings and who mostly remain biographically obscure, reveals the true diversity of the female artists of this era.
While the vaudeville theatres and travelling tent shows were probably the main venues for most of them, some sang in cabarets and others in low-down barrel houses. Some were vaudeville veterans whose careers stretched back to the teens or even earlier, while others were young new arrivals on the stage. Yet others sound as though they had just emerged from a rough saloon and house party environment. Some created their own excellent song material, while others were merely the vehicles for ambitious song-writers who often also served as their accompanists. Some are obscure and many leave us wishing they had been more extensively recorded. Whatever the case, they fill out the picture of the blues of this era and present plenty of fine musical moments and material of great interest.