Memphis Blues

Album: W.C. Handy's Memphis Blues Band (1909)
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Songfacts®:

  • W.C. Handy became known as the Father Of The Blues, and this was the reason why. "The Memphis Blues," or simply "Memphis Blues," was written in 1909 as a campaign song for Edward H. Crump, who served as Mayor of Memphis from 1910 to 1916. The song - which is subtitled "Mr. Crump" - was not published until 1912 (by Handy himself), but started a trend, and made his outfit the top band in that musical city. Although it is impossible to date the first blues song, Handy's was only the third ever to be published.
  • "Memphis Blues" has been widely recorded both as a vocal and instrumental including by Harry James And His Orchestra, Duke Ellington and Nat King Cole.
  • Marc Cohn alludes to Handy in his 1991 hit "Walking In Memphis." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for all above

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