Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom -...

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Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom Who Was Ma Rainey?
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Ma was born April 26, 1886  in Columbus, Georgia as  Gertrude Pridgett . Her first performance was  at a talent show when she  was anywhere from 12-14  years old. Around 1902, she was  introduced to Blues music  in Missouri, and began 
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She met William  “Pa”  Rainey and they were married February  2, 1904 – when she was 18. When she began performing with William, she took the stage  name  “Ma” . From that point on, she was known as “Ma”  Rainey. Together, they performed in Black Minstrel Shows and toured  with F.S. Wolcott’s Rabbit Foot Minstrels. While on tour in New Orleans, she met musicians including Joe  “King” Oliver, Louis Armstrong, Sidney Bechet, and Pops  Foster. Around this time, she also met Bessie Smith.  There was a  rumor going around that Ma kidnapped Bessie and forced her  to perform in the Rabbit Foot Minstrels.  Bessie’s sister-in-law 
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This note was uploaded on 11/14/2011 for the course ENGLISH 131 taught by Professor Peggyo'brien during the Spring '08 term at UMass (Amherst).

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Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom -...

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