The Bessie Smith Collection 1923-33
Catalogue Number: FADCD2040
Bessie Smith was not only the first significant female blues singer to emerge during the early electric recording era, but her influence and reputation is such that she is still rightly hailed as the most important and greatest female blues artist in the annals of the genre, rightly given the title “The Empress Of The Blues”. Her recording career was compressed into the decade covered by this collection, her career being blighted by the Depression, although she was actively performing and expanding her audience when she was killed in a car crash in 1937. This excellent value 48-track 2-CD set is selected from the 160 recordings she made for Columbia, and does not duplicate any titles which appear on the Fabulous label’s existing Bessie Smith 2-CD set “Bessie Smith Greatest Hits” (FADCD2004), and so the two together will give collectors around half of her entire recorded output, including some lesser known material alongside the famous classics. During her career, she recorded with eminent musicians of the day accompanying her and most of them are featured in this collection, including Louis Armstrong, Fletcher Henderson, James P. Johnson, Clarence Williams, Benny Goodman, Jack Teagarden and Don Redman.