The Most Important Women In Blues

I love blues music by today’s female singers. Alicia Keys, Aretha Franklin Queen of Soul, and my favorite blues song of Tina and Ike Turner’s Proud Mary. I always thought this song was wrote by Tina or Ike but I found out that the lyrics were actually written by John Fogerty of Credence Clear water in 1969.
The lyrics are about working in Memphis as a washer woman but then going to New Orleans on a riverboat named Proud Mary. But Ike and Tina changed the rhythm of the song making it from a rock song to a blues song. They gave it a faster beat and with Tina throws her heart, body and soul into the song giving it a life of it’s own. You feel it and you become part of that life while you listen to it. This is what blues music is all about experiencing the pain, agony, laughter and triumph of the singer. Proud Mary is rolling down the river and so are you, away from your job you hate and now with good people on the riverboat to a new and better life.
Christina Aguilar can sing soul without a doubt and I love how she can belt out those high tunes. But before her there were woman who did not just sing the blues but lived the blues. Nina Simone was one of the best female blues singer in my mind. She wrote over 500 songs and was female jazz singer of the year in 1967. When she was young and in school she had applied to the Julliard School of Music and was denied, she believes it was because she was African American. She became a civil right’s activist and a feminist. Listen to her album The Great Show Live in Paris and your ears will hear her greatest hits recorded in 1968. It is raw and blues in it’s purest form.
Another legendary diva that some Americans might not know is Edith Piaf. To me she was the ultimate blues singer. This four foot French woman was what blues is all about. She was born in 1915 to a mom who could not take care of her, her dad worked in the circus, she was raised by her grandmother who ran a brothel and to top it all off she became temporarily blind when she was a little girl. The prostitutes in the brothel took her to a sainted statue where she prayed and her sight was restored. At 14 years of age she literally sang on the streets of France for money. She had no studio, no producer and no fancy clothes. Her only equipment was her voice. Now that is rough and raw. Eventually she was discovered and her career took off. Edith was known as the Little Sparrow. Even with her success her life was still hard, she had a baby that died and a lover that died in a tragic plane crash. She became addicted to painkillers and eventually died at the young age of 47 of cancer. I recommend listening to ” The very best of Edith”, released in 2002. She had one of the most unique voices with power coming from all her being. Even in french lyrics you know it’s the blues and you can not be helped but be moved.What-s 1 more click? Your boss isn-t watching… Young Austin and No Difference