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The Traditional Delta and Country Blues

Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 1 (1923-1927) by Martha Copeland

Label: Document Records.
Release Date: November 21, 1995.
Releases: 2000, 2005.
Recording Time: 70 minutes.
Recording Date: September 1923 - August 1926.
Release Info: Compilation Studio Recording.

Styles: Classic Female Blues, Pre-War Blues, Traditional Gospel, Gospel.

Featured Artist: Martha Copeland.

During a five-year stretch beginning in 1923, blues woman Martha Copeland recorded about three dozen titles for the OKeh, Victor, and Columbia labels. Virtually all of these were reissued by Document during the 1990s. Vol. 1 of her complete works contains 23 tunes dating from September 1923 to August 1927. Because the second volume was filled out with recordings by Irene Scruggs, the first installment stands as the definitive Copeland collection. Her accompanists during this period included pianists Eddie Heywood, Sr., Cliff Jackson, Phil Worde, Louis Hooper, and Porter Grainger, in addition to cornetists Bubber Miley and Louis Metcalf, violinist Bert Howell, and banjoist Buddy Christian. On "Hard Headed Mama" and "When the Wind Make Connection with Your Dry Goods" she is joined by comedic vocalist Sidney Easton. When Copeland switched from OKeh to Columbia in September 1926, she was persuaded to cover Victoria Spivey's very first recorded song, "Black Snake Blues," which Spivey had waxed four months earlier for OKeh. Copeland recorded it again in February 1927 as "The Black Snake Moan," whereupon Blind Lemon Jefferson cut his own cover using Copeland's title almost exactly one month later. For those who really love blues from this time period, the link between these three amazing musicians may serve as an inspiration to obtain the complete works of all three artists as reissued by Document.
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Credits: Buddy Christian - banjo; Martha Copeland - composer, primary artist, vocals; Sidney Easton - vocals; Ernest Elliott - clarinet; Bob Fuller - clarinet; Porter Grainger - piano; Eddie Heywood - piano; Louis Hooper - piano; Bert Howell - violin; Cliff Jackson & His Crazy Cats - piano; Louis Metcalf - cornet; Bubber Miley - trumpet; John Wilby - liner notes; Phil Worde - piano.

Tracks: 1) The down so long blues; 2) The pawn shop blues; 3) Daddy, you`ve done put that thing on me; 4) The penetrating blues; 5) Black snake blues; 6) Papa if you can`t do better (take 2); 7) Papa if you can`t do better (take 3); 8) On decoration day (they'll know where to bring your flowers to); 9) Fortune teller blues; 10) When the wind make connection with your dry goods (vocal duet w. sidney easton); 11) Hard headed mama (vocal duet w. sidney easton); 12) I don`t care who ain` got nobody; 13) Stole my man blues; 14) The black snake moan; 15) Mine`s just as good as yours; 16) Soul and body (he belongs to me); 17) Sorrow Valley blues; 18) Dyin' crap-shooter's blues; 19) Mr Brakes-man (let me ride your train); 20) Police blues; 21) Skeleton key blues; 22) Hobo Bill; 23) Nobody rocks me like my baby do.