Big Bill Broonzy (1893-1958)
(2007 INDUCTEE) BIG BILL BROONZY RECORDED FOR THE CHAMPION LABEL IN RICHMOND FROM 1930 TO 1932 AND HELPED CREATE THE CHICAGO BLUES SOUND.
DONATED IN MEMORY OF JOHN LUMSDEN, FIRST PRESIDENT OF STARR PIANO INC., BY BRIAN HENRY MARTIN, SIXTH PRESIDENT, PACIFIC DIVISION.
William “Big Bill” Broonzy of Scott, Mississippi, sang and performed blues guitar and today is credited with not only helping to lay the foundation for the classic Chicago blues sound, but also with being one of the blues’ earliest international ambassadors. Broonzy’s first recordings were for the Paramount label in 1927, but in 1930 and 1932 he made a series of recordings in Richmond for Gennett, most of which were released under the pseudonym Big Bill Johnson. Some of Broonzy’s Gennett recordings were made with the “Hokum Boys,” a group that included “Georgia Tom” Dorsey and a female blues singer listed as Jane Lucas. Broonzy continued to play and gained popularity during the 1930s and 40s and began touring Europe in the 1950s.
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