With this HBO bio featuring Queen Latifah on it's way, Bessie is all the rage these days. It's great to see her getting some respect. Hopefully a new generation will seek out her music after they learn her story.
My favorite will always be "Gimme A Pigfoot," from Bessie's final recording session and released at the lowest point of the Great Depression. Admittedly, I'm no expert about music of this era. If anyone has analysis of this song, I'd love to hear it. It seems like she's mocking high brow society at the opening of the record and then celebrating Black culture for the rest of the song. Certainly "party songs" tend to be popular in eras of great struggle, as people welcome distraction. Give this a listen and draw your own conclusions.
In this era of the #BlackLivesMatter civil rights movement, certainly Bessie's story is poignant. The greatest entertainment star of her era essentially died because she was refused medical treatment due to her race. I'm thankful her story is being told in a very high profile way and hopefully the media will draw some connections to what's still happening today.