Blanche Thomas's voice is at its playful and sensuous best in this captivating live recording.
Here's a little about Blanche Thomas in her own words:
“I grew up singing. I made my first public appearance at the Tick Tock, and just down the street was the Pelican where I was a waitress and where Stepin Fetchit shuffled his slow way, and Ray Charles came to sing his blue notes. Later I sang at the Club Bali with the Six Brown Cats. Then the jazz focus moved from Rampart Street to Bourbon Street after the war and I sang at the Mardi Gras Lounge, THE place to work. It was a good time for music in New Orleans; I was happy to be part of it.”
After later singing in Chicago and then becoming a prestigious headliner in Florida, Blanche returned to New Orleans, thrilling audiences to her blues every week at Dixieland Hall. In a few short years, she would be singing at Carnegie Hall in New York.
On this album Blanche is backed by the oldest established band then still playing in New Orleans – “Papa” French and his New Orleans Jazz Band; the band was always a regular, featured attraction at Dixieland Hall.
The poignant trombone on “Am I Blue” could be no other than Waldren “Frog” Joseph, and the beautiful tender trumpet is Alvin Alcorn, formerly with Kid Ory’s Band. Joe “Cornbread” Thomas’s clarinet obligato is heard soaring, and through it all the wonderful piano fingers of Jeanette Kimball weave a delicate background for this album. The solid, melodic, insistent beat is given to us by Louis Barbarin on the drums, Frank Fields on bass, and “Papa” French, himself, on the banjo.