1 digital cassette audio tape (TCD-0134)
18 analog reel to reel audio tapes
The Center's agreement with Mr.
Cushing stipulates that "no copies can be made or direct quotes used for
publication in any form" without his written permission.
Taped for the Center by
Sunrise" is a series of public radio programs on blues and blues artists
produced by Steve Cushing, a life-long blues fan and a blues festival and
workshop coordinator and participant, journalist and disc jockey, for station
The Center has selected for
retention only those programs which include interviews with blues performers as
well as performances. The interviews which appear on these tapes came from
Cushing's personal collection and were conducted by him over a number of years.
Scope and content:
The first program (TCD-0134) includes performances by a variety of blues artists; the audio log which follows provides a complete list of performers and song titles in the broadcast.
The second program (TTA-0134A and B)
which was taped 21 October 1990 is an interview with Roosevelt Thomas Williams
"The Gray Ghost". The interview covers his childhood and other
employment as well as a personal history of his career as a
The third program (TTA-0134C) is an interview with Percy Mayfield about his work as a composer and arranger with Ray Charles in the late 1950's.
The fourth program (TTA-0134D) which
was taped 11 May 1990 is an interview with Andrew Tibbs
[Melvin Andrew Grayson] who discusses his family history, work in club gigs and
show business, his reaction to the release of his record "Union Man"
and the destruction of his musical career by addiction to narcotics and
The fifth program (TTA-0134E) includes first recordings released by Ma Rainey, Memphis Minnie, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Ruth Brown, Little Esther, Big Mama Thornton, the Inkspots, Charles Brown, Percy Mayfield, Joe Williams and the Chocolates, Roosevelt Sikes, Big Bill Broonzy and John Thomas, B.B. King, and Lightin' Hopkins.
The sixth program (TTA-0134F) which was taped November 1991 features pianist Little Willie Littlefield who discusses his family history; other musicians from the Houston TX area; his role models; first recording sessions, discography, record producers and changing record labels; road gigs with his own band; new style gigs in Europe; other expatriates; and physical aspects of piano playing and plays a number of his songs.
In the seventh program (TTA-0134G/H) Johnny Hartsman, in an interview taped January 1988, discusses the first time he heard the blues; his early musical influences including records he purchased, high school band mates and specific performers; and early recordings dates and live gigs and performs a variety of songs.
The eighth program (TTA-0134I) which was broadcast in August 1992 was drawn from a 1982 interview with Robert "Junior" Lockwood in which Lockwood discussed his relationship with Robert Johnson, his Chicago career recording with Peter "Doc" Clayton and others, and his later work with Sunnyland Slim and Sonny Boy Williamson in Mississippi and with Little Walter Jacobs in Arkansas and performed several songs.
Sippie Wallace, who was interviewed for and performed on the ninth program (TTA-0134J/K) listened to records by Ma Rainey and Mamie Smith before beginning her career in tent shows. In this interview she discusses her first marriage which ended in divorce; her move to Chicago and work with her brother songwriter George Thomas; her recording career; musicians with whom she has worked; her relationships, personal and professional, with other members of her family; and other women blues singers with whom she worked and who influenced her style and career. She also performed songs of her own as well as songs by her brother George and others.
(TTA-0134L), eleven (TTA-0134M), twelve (TTA-0134N), thirteen (TTA-0134O), and
fourteen (TTA-0134P) feature interviews and occasional performances by a
variety of performers who are listed on the audio logs which follow. Many of these interviews deal with the
musical influences on and the early careers of the performers. Programs fifteen
and sixteen document the
Audio visual materials are filed
first by format, then by tape number in the audio visual archives.
A photograph and brief article on Roosevelt Thomas Williams from National Geographic June 1990 is filed in the biographical vertical file under his name.