[38] She was inducted into the Blues Foundation's Hall of Fame in 1980.[39]. In the decade of the 1930’s she changed her stage name to “Memphis Minnie,” after gaining a recording contract from New York City’s Columbia Records. Biography Sarah Colley studied dramatics in Belmont College in Nashville, intending to be a serious actress, but while touring with an Atlanta company, she created the Minnie Pearl character that became her life's work. She was an influence on later singers, such as Big Mama Thornton, Jo Ann Kelly[1] and Erin Harpe. Sparks. Minnie was different from Bessie in that she wrote her own songs and played the guitar. They were discovered by a talent scout for Columbia Records, in front of a barber shop, where they were playing for dimes. (It is interested that even Minnie’s name connects her to a sense of smallness and powerlessness: “mini”.) Minnie and her husband Son Joe (I think that's his name; I'm sure the info is in Garon's book) both play acoustic guitars. For Christmas in 1905 she received a guitar and swiftly learned how to play it, plus the banjo. In 1930, Minnie and Kansas Joe migrated to Chicago, where they speedily became part of the city’s expanding, blues scene. She was already a veteran of almost two decades of … She presented herself in public as feminine and ladylike, but according to her piers she chewed tobacco, carried a pistol, and never backed down from a fight. [5] She then went back to Beale Street, with its thriving blues scene, and made her living by playing guitar and singing, supplementing her income by prostitution (at that time, it was not uncommon for female performers to work as prostitutes out of financial need). Mississippi in 1897 she rejected the name Lizzie in favor of the nickname “Kid, ,” so “Kid Douglas” she was u ntil a Columbia records talent scout found her and her husbandplaying in Memphis and sent them to New York to make their first recordings. [33] He dedicated songs to her, including "Key to the World", in which he addresses her as "the woman I got now" and calls her "the key to the world." Memphis Minnie The hundreds of sides Minnie recorded are the perfect material to teach us about the blues. [1] She was the eldest of 13 siblings. The following year after she moved, she … She and McCoy went to record in New York City and were given the names Kansas Joe and Memphis Minnie by a Columbia A&R man. She was a wild child, running away from home for the last time at 13, heading for the bright lights of Beale Street, where, as “Kid” Douglas, she quickly made a name for herself with the jug bands and string groups that played on the street and at Memphis’ Church Park. Go Ahead, you know you want to! Minnie Pearl. [11] They divorced in 1935. It is reported that she disliked the name Lizzie. aka Memphis Minnie. In: Cohn, L. Pearson, Barry (1993). [11] She also toured extensively in the 1930s, mainly in the South. Asked by teash. Columbia, 1991. By the time Memphis Minnie hit the scene, the heyday of women blues singers was all but finished. Try making out, say, in the kitchen or hopping in the shower with your wife or girlfriend. There were some things that in her own time not even Memphis Minnie could accomplish. [10] Minnie and McCoy continued to record for Vocalion until August 1934, when they recorded a few sessions for Decca Records. Minnie herself does not get to answer the question of why she killed her husband. She married Kansas Joe McCoy (pictured with her to the right), another Memphis blues artist, and began co-writing and performing with him. She performed at local parties using “Kid Douglas” as her stage name. 19:03 16 318. Memphis Minnie (known to her family as “Kid”) was born June 3, 1897, in Algiers Louisiana, the oldest of 13 brothers and sisters. [17] The poet Langston Hughes, who saw her perform at the 230 Club on New Year's Eve, 1942, wrote of her "hard and strong voice" being made harder and stronger by amplification and described the sound of her electric guitar as "a musical version of electric welders plus a rolling mill. They put an emphasis on “musicianship, showmanship, varied repertoire, and a sense of artistry” (Harrison 9). Lizzie ran away from home to play at Church’s Park for tips as a young teenager. Douglas in Algiers, Louisiana Steady: the Roots of R & B '' born in Algiers, in. ] her headstone is inscribed: Lizzie `` Kid '' Douglas Lawlers Memphis! Or hopping in the 1930s, mainly in the shower with your wife or girlfriend, as... 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