Jessie Mae Hemphill

Genres: Blues
Descriptive "tags": blues female vocalists old blues blues guitar women vox femina Powered by AudioScrobbler
Decades Active: 1980s 1990s 2000s
Links online: Discography Official Homepage Wikipedia


18 October 1937, Mississippi, USA, d. 22 July 2006, Memphis, Tennessee, USA. A member of a family whose musical activities can be traced back a number of generations (her grandfather Sid Hemphill and aunt Rosa Lee Hill both made recordings), from the 50s onwards, Hemphill spent many years playing and singing. She sang blues, most of which she wrote herself, based on her own experiences, and played guitar in a local style, using droning chords and beating time on a tambourine with her foot. She also played drums in a fife and drum band, one of the last active examples of an old Mississippi tradition. Hemphill made a number of recordings during this period, including a couple of singles issued by a venture owned by Memphis State University, and two raw studio albums. She won W.C. Handy awards for Best Traditional Female Blues Artist (1987 and 1988) and Best Acoustic Album (for 1991’s Feelin’ Good).

In 1993, Hemphill’s career was...

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