Friday, August 12, 2016

And now, Ruby Wilson

Fresh on the news that Ruby Winters has died comes news that another Ruby, the Queen of Beale Street, Ruby Wilson, has died aged 68. Although born in Texas, Ruby moved to Memphis aged 16 and became a regular performer on Beale Street. She was a superb blues singer who appeared regularly at B B King's club on Beale and at festivals throughout the US. She also had roles in several movies, including The Chamber, The People vs Larry Flint, Cookie's Fortune and Black Snake Moan. She suffered a stroke in 2009 but continued to perform and I saw her a number of times in recent years, including at the New Orleans Jazzfest in 2013 (pictured above), when she performed a tribute to Bessie Smith, and, most recently, at Ground Zero in Clarksdale in October 2014, where she was a guest performer with Super Chickan. Despite her disability she always looked glamorous and her voice was as strong as ever.
Below are a couple of photos at Ground Zero, including one with me. RIP Ruby (both of them),


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