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Sweet Home Chicago: Part IV. Blame it on the Blues

Thomas Dorsey was an active composer and blues performer before his gospel breakthrough in the early 1930s. In 1910 at age 11 he sold candy at Atlanta’s famous 81 Theater where he first heard William “Pa” Rainey and Gertrude “Ma” … Continue reading

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Sweet Home Chicago: Part III. Jazz and Blues on the Stroll

Chicago in the 1920s was a melting pot for jazz and blues, a vibrant mix of musical styles from different parts of the south. Jazz came up from New Orleans early in the century and spread nationwide along with economic … Continue reading

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