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Name 3 June 2011 Assignment The period of Jazz music flourished greatly in the United States of America under the influence of musical greats like Louis Armstrong and Bessie Smith. Also referred to as the Empress of the Blues, Bessie Smith had established herself as one of the most renowned musicians in the field of jazz and blues in the period between the 1920s and 1930s.
Bessie Smith’s inherent passion for music was discovered fortunately at a very young age as she and her brother took to the streets of their local neighbourhoods in Chattanoonga, as they sang and danced in order to earn money for their meals. However, her brother soon left her to join a professional troupe and she was left behind due to being very young. Soon enough, her brother arranged for a meeting and interview for Bessie for the Stokes Troupe and she was hired as a dancer but not as a singer, thus her true potential had yet not been realised. In 1915, the singer left and became a part of the Theater Owners Bookers Association, an African American performance group and this became the milestone in her career. The group helped her to gain popularity all over and become a recognised singer. Following this, offers began coming in for Bessie to be part of musicals and one of her firsts, titled ‘How Come?’ made its way to Broadway as well. Here, Bessie co starred with Sidney Bechet. ...
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