Gertrude “Ma” Rainey


Gertrude “Ma” Rainey Famous memorial

Columbus, Muscogee County, Georgia, USA
Death 22 Dec 1939 (aged 53)
Columbus, Muscogee County, Georgia, USA
Burial Columbus, Muscogee County, Georgia, USA
Memorial ID 2477 View Source

Blues Singer. The "Mother of the Blues" first appeared on stage in 1900. In 1902 she married song and dance man William Pa Rainey. She was then know as Ma even though the marriage did not last. Her band included jazz stars Louis Armstrong, Thomas Dorsey and Coleman Hawkins. Between 1923 and 1928 she recorded more than 100 songs for Paramount. She helped mentor the career of Bessie Smith. The Great Depression ended her career as her fan base lost their ability to buy her records. She retired back to Columbus and died of a heart attack. She was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in 1983 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

Bio by: Paul G. Healy

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 31 Dec 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 2477
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Gertrude “Ma” Rainey (26 Apr 1886–22 Dec 1939), Find a Grave Memorial ID 2477, citing Porterdale Cemetery, Columbus, Muscogee County, Georgia, USA ; Maintained by Find a Grave .