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Bessie Smith artist page: interviews, features and/or performances archived at NPR Music
May 7, 2008 The singer's feverish growls and impassioned delivery informed nearly all African American music.
January 16, 2000 Margaret Howze reports on the song's background and its definitive 1925 recording by Bessie Smith.
August 1, 2001 Known as "empress of the blues," Bessie Smith shows she can captivate a room without a microphone.
November 21, 2012 A new 10-CD box set collects the complete works of the colossus who straddled jazz and blues.
July 26, 2012 Our musical sommelier matches classical pieces with the perfect brews.
September 27, 2011 The banning of alcohol and the subsequent rise of speakeasies played a role in jazz's evolution.
August 10, 2011 Hear five versions of the popular W.C. Handy song, performed by five of America's top jazz artists.
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by Bessie Smith