Gaye Adegbalola

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I'm A Hungry Woman

Gaye Adegbalola Voc., harp, gui

Den 77-årige sanger, guitarist og mundharpespiller Gaye Adegbalola er Blues Music Award vinder og hun har bl.a. delt scenen med B.B. King, Ray Charles, Willie Dixon og Koko Taylor. 

Abegbalola blev født i 1944, som 11-årig oplevede hun en hæsblæsende koncert med Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee og det forplantede sig i hende til den dag idag. Hun gik på et raceadskilte gymnasium og hun deltog i adskillige protester som medlem af flere borgerrettigheds bevægelser. Hun kom senere på Boston University, hvor hun dimitterede med en bachelor inden for biologi. Adegbalola blev biokemisk forsker ved Rockefeller University og var bakteriolog ved Harlem Hospital. Samtidigt med at hun var involveret i Black Power Movement i New York.

Gaye Adegbalola er en hel unik kommunikator og hendes Facebook profil bevidner om en hel ekstraordinær kvinde, der har været rollemodel for flere generatioens kvinder. Adegbalola er nok mest kendt fra den akustiske blues-trio Saffire The Uppity Blues Women, fra Washington, D.C.-området. Trioen blev grundlagt i 1984 af Gaye Adegbalola, Ann Rabson og Earlene Lewis. Lewis blev i 1992 erstattet af Andra Faye. De næste 17 år var gruppen Adegbalola på sang og guitar, Rabson på klaver, sang og guitar, og Faye på sang, bas, mandolin, violin og guitar.

Denne charmerende og kompetente gruppe, der bestod af midaldrende, livserfarne og sprudlende kvinder, blev hurtigt et kanonstort navn i USA. Deres musik var en kombination af seriøse og komiske blues-sange med tendens til at beskæftige sig med feministiske temaer, hvilket har gjort dem populære uden for de traditionelle blues-kredse.

Saffire var det første akustiske band, der skrev kontrakt med Alligator Records, som er verdens største blues pladeselskab. Adegbalola’s sang “Middle Aged Blues Boogie”, vandt prisen som den bedste originale sang på W.C. Handy Awards (nu Blues Music Awards) i 1990.

Hendes første soloalbum, »Bitter Sweet Blues«, blev indspillet i 1999 og er et veludført, personligt, modent, smukt, humoristisk/alvorligt, akustisk/elektrisk blues-værk fra en garvet, bevidst kunstner, der kan sit kram og som har noget på hjerte. Adegbalola skyer intet emne, og hendes kraftfulde vidtfavnende stemme kommer virkelig til sin ret. Ud over hendes egne originale kompositioner, havde albummet coverversioner af sange af Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey og Nina Simone. Siden er det blevet til syv meget anbefalelsesværdige, fremragende, hjertevarme og langtidsholdbare albums.

I løbet af 1990’erne holdt Adegbalola workshops om forskellige aspekter af bluesmusik og arbejdede som bluesmusikreporter på National Public Radio. I 1998 blev hun bestyrelses medlem i Blues Music Association i Memphis.

Adegbalola’s sang “Big Ovaries, Baby” blev brugt i podcast #23 om 2007 filmen “The War On Democracy” og hun blev i 2018 hædret som Library of Virginia’s Women in History.

Discografi_

Bittersweet Blues (1999)

Neoclassic Blues (2004)

Blues Gone Back (2006)

Gaye Without Shame (2008)

Blues In All Flavors (2012)

Parents’ Choice Gold Award in Music

The Griot (2019)

Is It Still Good To Ya? (2019)

🇬🇧 ENGLISH 🇬🇧

Gaye Todd Adegbalola, a Blues Music Award winner, is best known musically as a founding member of Saffire – The Uppity Blues Women (1984 – 2009). The group recorded exclusively with Alligator Records. Additionally, she has 6 recordings on her own label, Hot Toddy Music (Todd is her family name).

Gaye was born and raised in Fredericksburg, Virginia where she sat-in, picketed and protested its racism. She graduated as valedictorian of the then-segregated Walker-Grant High School, went “ up North” to Boston University to finish with a major in biology and a minor in chemistry. Prior to becoming a teacher, she worked as a technical writer for TRW Systems, a biochemical researcher at Rockefeller University, and a bacteriologist at Harlem Hospital. She has a Master’s degree in Educational Media (with a concentration in photography) from Virginia State University.

Prior to becoming a full time blues artist, Gaye was a science teacher in the Fredericksburg City Public School system for 18 years, and was honored as Virginia State Teacher of the Year in 1982. Throughout her teaching career, she directed Harambee 360º Experimental Theater —where she was able to creatively use performance as a tool to assist black youth in gaining confidence as they struggled with identity issues during the spread of desegregation.
During this same period, she nurtured her love of the blues.

As a pre-teen, she had first heard live blues at a Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee concert. This initiated her interest in Piedmont-style fingerpicking. As a young adult, Nina Simone led her to Bessie Smith causing her to fully immersed herself in the repertoire of classic blues women of that era. It was later in life that she picked up slide guitar.

Unable to get by on a teacher’s income, she began moonlighting in local clubs and her love of the blues soon grew into a full time career with Saffire – the Uppity Blues Women. She is very proud that they toured the world, brought many women to the blues and inspired many women to become musicians. Saffire ended in November, 2009, after making music together for 25 years.