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Bessie Smith

Bessie Smith (April 15, 1894 – September 26, 1937) was an African American blues singer. Nicknamed the Empress of the Blues, she was the most popular female blues singer of the 1920s and 1930s. Bessie did not have an available education because her parents had died and her elder sister was taking care of her. She is often regarded as one of the greatest singers of her era and was a major influence on fellow blues singers, as well as jazz vocalists.

Birth and Death Data: Born April 15th, 1894 (Chattanooga), Died September 26th, 1937 (Clarksdale)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1923 - 1933

Roles Represented in DAHR: vocalist, composer, lyricist, leader, songwriter

Recordings (Results 176-191 of 191 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Columbia W150657 10-in. 7/22/1930 Hustlin' Dan Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with cornet and piano vocalist  
Columbia W150658 10-in. 7/22/1930 Black Mountain blues Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with cornet and piano vocalist  
Columbia W151594 10-in. 6/10/1931 In the house blues Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with instrumental quartet vocalist, lyricist, composer  
Columbia W151595 10-in. 6/10/1931 Long old road Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with instrumental quartet vocalist, composer, lyricist  
Columbia W151596 10-in. 6/11/1931 Blue blue Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with instrumental quartet vocalist, composer, lyricist  
Columbia W151597 10-in. 6/11/1931 Shipwreck blues Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with instrumental quartet vocalist, lyricist, composer  
Columbia W151883 10-in. 11/20/1931 Need a little sugar in my bowl Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with piano vocalist  
Columbia W151884 10-in. 11/20/1931 Safety mama Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with piano vocalist, composer, lyricist  
Columbia W152577 10-in. 11/24/1933 Do your duty Buck and his Band ; Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with jazz/dance band vocalist  
Columbia W152578 10-in. 11/24/1933 Gimme a pigfoot Buck and his Band ; Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with jazz/dance band vocalist  
Columbia W152579 10-in. 11/24/1933 Take me for a buggy ride Buck and his Band ; Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with jazz/dance band vocalist  
Columbia W152580 10-in. 11/24/1933 I'm down in the dumps Buck and his Band ; Bessie Smith Female vocal solo ("blues singer"), with jazz/dance band vocalist  
OKeh S-72265 10-in. Jan. 1924 Jail house blues Virginia Liston Female vocal solo, with guitar songwriter  
OKeh 74203 10-in. June 1926 Lone desert blues Harry Gompers Clarinet solo, with banjo and piano composer, lyricist  
OKeh W80831 10-in. 5/3/1927 Back water blues Lonnie Johnson Male vocal solo, with guitar and piano composer, lyricist  
OKeh W82053 10-in. 12/13/1927 Sweet potato blues Lonnie Johnson Male vocal solo, with guitar and piano composer, lyricist  
(Results 176-191 of 191 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Smith, Bessie," accessed October 25, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104231.

Smith, Bessie. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved October 25, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104231.

"Smith, Bessie." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 25 October 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104231

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