Photographic Essays on the History of the Blues
Visiting the places connected with one bluesman or another is a mandatory requirement for writing an essay about him. That’s why I and Svetlana had to do a great deal of traveling around the American South and other regions. Of course, as a result we’ve got plenty of photographic materials. For understandable reasons just a minor part of the pictures has been used in the books, and the rest of them has been carefully archived, waiting for their turn to be published in one of the volumes in the future. In the same time the presentation of the photos made during our American expeditions would give our readers a better idea about the places where the blues originated, where it had been maturing in the souls and hearts of the great musicians of the past before finally made its way into the world and captured it.
Since our row, amateur photos have no special artistic merits, the publication of some commentaries along with them is of significant importance: it will help to create at least some image of the vanished epoch.
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For the last several years we've been putting out our photographic essays one by one in Russian language. From now on, we intend to publish the most important of them in English. Therefore the translated essays will appear in a new numerical order.
Episode 1. Columbus, Georgia. The Gertrude «Ma» Rainey House & Blues Museum on Fifth Avenue
For us, lovers of the blues and all English-American music, the main place of interest of Columbus, GA certainly is the «Ma» Rainey Family House. It is her home, her Lares and Penates: her nearest and dearest lived there, and the great blues woman herself spent her last years in this house...