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the and it's because this is america music was a way for me to get out and that we get out and then on the other hand it was a way for me to contribute and i knew because one day as anglo women may be needed that ballot there was more love automated all week on his job my father was a laborer and when they're not only had to be fought it is oh my mother was a domestic but
that kind of money that i see leaders that i had a better sense of the business i probably would not have been fighting plane ebony is advanced math that read the top of that wrought and in so doing i brought about the instructional book foundation called the rhythm and blues foundation now looks and fights for that world is what that would be ruth well the original queen of rhythm and blues her career has taken her from the apollo theater to broadway in recent years has been a remarkable role in addition to the radio worker presses on records and had my clothes she has been racking up award after award for a published autobiography titled myth rhythm that is they made into a movie a work and failed on television and on the broadway stage this blues superstar then the movement has for decades riot so many hits to an eleven year period started
nineteen forty nine ll records was called the house that ruth built in nineteen eighteen and brown made her broadway debut in black and blue or performance earned her a tony award also that year she received her first grammy i'm jackie ends in june and welcome to another edition of and black america and this week's programme the queen of rhythm and blues ruth brown and black america today santa learn a set in la i would take a holiday parade first of all in and in that particular radio show i was able to talk one on one with stars that i work with and baby could land like an amicus our behavior you know and i was always into say do you remember you know like bo diddley was on my show and i say that but that you do you remember the mad at the running
dealers in kansas city it wasn't an audience was gone mad and bo diddley was taken his band around in a horse and better and i jumped in the hearse to get out so they were things that we could remember me not to talk to every day when everybody else and i always was proud of that show and i was proud of it and now they are a couple of other show that kind of falling behind that i'd be a good enough you know but some of it is like not real bailout alleges that still around the biggest political rally of survivor from the heyday of jackie wilson sam cooke him big joe turner the days before removals recast as rock n roll in the fifties she was known as miss rhythm also though and they're tangy with a top female star in r and b worn groove weston on january twelfth nineteen twenty eight important
agenda she is the goal of seven children she sang in the church choir then joined lucky known as big bed after winning a talent contest at the apollo theater and how are two dozen hits everywhere records help secure its footing and the record industry recently move browse in austin for a taping of the public television program austin city limits and black america had opportunity for this exclusive interview i am i was i lost a system as she the owners of about seven children and nobody i always say ah it's it's quite a question that i've never really found the answer to as to why out of seven jody houser one that could say cause so i believe that it was a gift in the you know but growing up in virginia had its highs and all this is highs being whenever that is to sing and most of that was in the church and that is not unusual you know lot to look at a child
who came up with the town of that in the background and the polish and then positions on with this week a dog i spent my summers in north carolina i spent all of my school seasons in portsmouth virginia going to school but june fifteen one school closed the next day you on whatever means of transportation it was to get us doctor lab to my grandmother to go into the fields a work as sharecroppers also an ad even hours ago coming up it was a happy data but now that i am a woman and i look back at that it was a good time you know and i think that all of that background has a lot to do with my stamina today and being able to do a certain things and a lot of honor people might say howdy doody her well and have a lot to do with family our tomorrows by which we lived on the respect we head
flop hands out of tofu you know you know what i'm saying you know i'm i remember so well that era dallas to what the situation was when the father came when he was the man of the house no doubt about it you know we would tell children should be seen it mattered you heard that right and speak when you've spoken to and come a new call like the dog adorable but all but that was it but when i came to la carolina i remember that we did we went to church follow the heal baptist churches was in macomb after a line and there was and all upright piano not anything else that judge did not heaven on them and latin music was jealous elaine oh it is ok understand and that particular church i remember so well because my grandmother on sundays after having
worked the fields all week long on sundays you were glad nothing else happened nothing else happened and being known as girl i wasn't like full block in the morning anyway to good bread was i had maniacal figure badass a n we had to be finished with brett was cleaned up and then blowing it is using it to blue sea of as a lead you know what about i'm not a get the elbows in alaska ms audrey and go to churches and on the back of a wagon going to the church and asked them the music and speculation that well it didn't have a car or but we had a wagner and i'm you know i'm in their first big break the first recording session yes tools i remember because i was on crutches it happened i had been in an automobile accident that had weighed me wendy i was in route from washington dc and i was riding in the car where blanche calloway cab calloway sister who had become a manager and she was taking me to meal
to go on the apollo create a state has spoken to frank schiffman unlike sight unseen she told him that she'd discovered this girl with a great voice and to please give her a shot i was on my way to new york to do that and at the same time to sign a contract with atlantic records because they had a verbal agreement that they were going to sign me and i was on my way they are and we got to chester pennsylvania which is right outside of philadelphia and there was an automobile accident and my legs were crushed and i remained in the hospital for one me and so when i finally got into the recording studio i was on crutches when i when ian and i went into it because atlantic didn't really know what to do with the music's newman refer so yes i saw that on the other side you know
in may they were still put me because at that particular time that a democrat is i'm the same age and you know you and mainstream it was race music you know an eva the thing is that i was an iowa based on country westervelt has mostly what i heard you know but i did go into the studio and the reason that they took me and they would be on the show called voice of america and her cavalcade of musical the boys of america which was well armed forces radio at that time and they were recording eddie condon and buddy a buddy hackett and i remember it well and they're wise a space that they needed to fail and that's when they brought me in full and i remember that when i went into the studio that day they were just kind of
not a stranger to but you know we learned a musician is a lot of technicians i have a great respect for each other men incomes is a woman that came even tell what the signature means on the music now on the paper you know knock and she read out on the wiki yeah do anything here and so they also know i have a dog and you know let's do this and you know we're an amen will forget that they played like the introduction to the song and when i went into it i guess i get about eight bars and big seed can't let the drama stopped if you say wait a minute wait a minute let's go back and do this right the dispute can say i remember that and that was my first experience in the studio and that too was pulled out from there and by him and that was my introduction to the museum is the first female on atlantic records of any musicians' that you
like two before where folks go into the studio with for your record oh i bet time definitely unfortunately yeah it hurts to say they're not too many of those wonderful guys around that was the difference in courting in those days we did just what you say when in the studio a nearby was sitting god we are now facing one another a lot of times they were not shots all raises that there was and what it will do with this what it is it is and the saxophone player was advice and ideas and we're talking about like sam the man taylor and we're talking about milk jackson lee is still with the same limits and there was on it cause he was our lot about him king curtis you know all these saudis did gene ammons know delano might be in studio we knew when ian and there was this commando family again you know we'd sit around disgusted music and some i
was sent out and get some food and we need me and we go back as a look at the gunman change this but the wonderful thing was that people were there in person you could stop if he had a change of hot poker which is i like what they do today you know a lot of it is already pre programmed then pre done is that going to sing to the trap i know that's probably is but is given us an idea of the yen says yes this was a single improvisation was i am and for instance you know you go on stage and do in the middle of your performance you make at some bad as i and realize that their body language just a beer enjoying labor day or not and you'd like to respond to that you know and i mean how else does the museum become personal how else unless you can go back and an advantage it would ease you give me bass latin quarter you know and so that's the reason i'm a lady
is i was amazed at the time and some other feiler decided they weren't assigned me and let me go in and go into the studio with live musicians once again you know travel around the country now give us that i a retrospective of the difference today versus what it was when let me say when i came to boston i could not go to the writers write you into saying ok ah it was difficult and the music was relegated to also call saul the older section of town where it the afro american could not really a lot of times not only here in austin but most places we did allow a sudden touring and we had to get in town in time to go to the heart of where the black people erupt i'm going to what ever was the top barbershop and a beauty shop that the manager
and that are now entering that collar and less and pocket read a kid's see because nobody's gonna put a hot iron money out review mandated that damn hot air money was like seven thousand to go to the transit visa logo also there was no pre sale knowingly years ago maybe and that's why he had to be gavel because a lot of times now are a lot of entertainers have clauses in their contracts is a well i get paid the plug on this day we didn't have that we had great advice from vallejo you know with god and i get out at all you had to as a mother and as that may show diggers not be so twice but times changed and hopefully for the better i don't know if it's i don't know you played on broadway interesting to tell me how to get to the most unbelievable moment of my life you know the reason
i say that and people may think that's funny but i say it because i am is singing fifty etsy gotten them up until once in my life i received a grammy since then and that is the award the trophy the mouthpiece structure that they gave you to say oh you've been good at what you've been doing i mean i think the longevity has a lot to do to paraphrase that again i'd like to live along that you know and i think the longevity of you can stay in his musical long enough to be remembered by some bad i think i think that's the sign of success and for me that all that i get and i hear people say i remember he that's in me is all i meet idea can set a few weeks a few months ago in brooklyn in your book and i get an easy going in iraq and there was a woman in the audience who opened
there awhile it and had an autograph that i sign in nine ting fifty can you believe this is nineteen ninety two he's still had it and it was written on a piece of brown paper form of brown paper bed and on that i put her name and bank of a lagging the first record which was so law and see was in that audience that day was probably the most emotional moment that i can remember because she describes what our wall first and he sells she'd slap how long she stood in land to get inside and she said that she still remembers that i was nice to her though as unimportant things you know balls on the important things your membership in the rock'n'roll hall frank yes well i made it
and i guess a lot of that came about because they were people casa use it when lewis came out where the girls you know when i get where they're also now am there was this planet nine ah that distinguishes rock n roll from remember those i was a rhythm and blues singer not a rock'n'roll sing about what they did like math brian richard says very loudly roman blows at a baby and they called the raptor all rosy and so i just happened to be the year when all of this came about and i lasted to look well what nobody else to put up an image that is a mistake was a reed the winnable idea and as well
he says no one there and then i was there about four months ago in cleveland to this huge destruction and i saw my little section a memorabilia i'd only remember sheet music that had my picture but they've found that you know in their ears and they have my tambourine alum addresses not want them that big particular period you look at the size of that you know i did not wait address in nineteen fifty all but it was wonderful to go liane and see this it was exceptionally wonderful because my son's that to see it and they did not that they never really knew at that time what i was about but that they will build bomb in the fifties uneasy and now it has become something now that's a lot of the law of the curriculum is going to talk about this music and
i'm still articulate enough to go in and do some question answers and i think that's what needs to be there are removing our some of our our heritage our contribution to this formal form of music and further after american young people not come into it by coming to not honoring it i don't know what the reasons are and i've tried to look at is straight down the middle and anna i think the only way i can do that is to really relived some of the visits and the things that this music it's theirs for a land speed record came along and was done and i'm very rare hard time in our last nsa our i am a black person who was touring in the deep sat singing where there were hangings going on and where my car was being burned away
we were just emotionally abused and i said at that time our young and can a flag had an attitude you know but flawed the persons who remained in the south and wherever else this kind of injustice existed and that dealt with it every day hardships of that i took my hat custis stronger than ah but i'm glad that was strong because for that reason they're sending i can do now i can talk about but some of the things that spares like jackie wilson ona last week we used to say my god i how can you know how can this be but what we had work in our favor was that after we got that with the news we get on a bus and all that you know everything there is to be the pastor grandparents
of the noun generation because the now generation did not know anything about me you know and nab a wheel cuss out communications the media and the television demand will let them know about me thanks so much you guys are at a work holiday parade and as someone who's a good blues de china enjoyed the other side of the table of the window i like it very much because i think radio is the media i am always the bad because it does require some kind of imagination you know you have to envision what you what's being say that and you don't do that in television and dvds all day at you know and so for the moment you know it's not really a learning tool in a mall it's an art form that allows a lot of non talented become great stars i'll say that mitt romney never let me say that again the best away at it and i said to someone little baby here as if
the light's pullout would go find out when that humans dogs and there's no electricity and now by pushing the buttons and no readers and most old lights and no small streams we'll find out that we don't have to let it go and for us you know but i think the wonderful thing about radio and i loved it when i was doing it mainly because i would take a holiday parade first of all and in that particular radio show i was able to dot one on one with stars that i work with and baby could land that didn't meet his alma mater you know and i was always into said do you remember you know like bo diddley was on my show and as a devoted only do you remember the mad at the running your sink and the city big al because it was it did show an audience was gone mad and bo diddley was taken his band around in a horse and better and i jumped in the hearse to get out of town with him you know so they were things that we could remember you not to talk to etta james
and everybody else a n i always was proud of that show i was proud of it and now they a couple of other show that kind of falling behind that idea of good enough you know but some of it is like our not really a lot of the ledges at a still around the biggest all helpful thing a lot of us are still at a million of interview two to do well while as though i was asked you looking back on her career is and then at you would've done differently to well i don't know where the music is concerned if i would have done anything differently i would have possibly had a better sense of the business end of it ah and when i began music was a way for me to get out and that we get out and then on the other hand it was a way for me to contribute and i knew because one day as anglo women they gave me a bit of that
balance that was more my father may put all week on his jaw my father was a laborer and where very hard only had to be fodder to use all my mother was a domestic but the academy money that icy being heard if that i had a better sense of the business i probably would not have been fighting fully levin he is against muppet record capital back royalties and in so doing i brought about and the construction of a local foundation go to remember those foundations will now looks and fights for bad world is one that's what the intent is you know they get slow ascent and lack of the day that is always you go though iranian you know what that's what it's about i mean if they want a sale and my heart is still good men and then all imams gimpel is the recognition to show that
contributed you know i was here a long time and i'm not gone away nowhere i refuse to be sick cows niccolo <unk> there are no no no because there's still too many good songs so many good stories too many inspiring stories too many nice person like yourself who were like open up his wellspring has allowed to be talked about here and there's more to what we're talking about then you've planted the house of blues but there was a random or you know today is green because so much money and young people are attempting to sing the blues now days don't have the real reasons i don't see a reason to sing the blues if you got a mansion in a chauffeured limousine in a big band when we came along we had the reasons in that lab it's different
maybe i'm going away he was if you have questions comments or suggestions as to future in black america problems right now it also let us know what radio station you know how like to thank the austin city limits for the assistance and the program susan a thing as expressed on the program are not necessarily those of the station toward the university of texas at austin and juliet opportunity again for it a technical producer david altshuler as production assistant havens a raptor i'm jenelle hansen jr thank you for joining us today and please join us again next week cassette copies of this program are available and maybe purchase by writing in black america cassettes
communication building b ut austin austin texas seventy seven one two that's in black america cassettes communication building b ut austin texas seventy seven wanted to do from the university of texas at austin this is the longhorn radio network fb and then ill hands into new join me this week on a lot from a lot of film and then all i met him for is the recommendation to sell that you know we got
In Black America
Blues Superstar with Ruth Brown
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KUT Radio
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KUT Radio (Austin, Texas)
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Episode Description
Interview with blues superstar Ruth Brown
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Social Issues
Race and Ethnicity
University of Texas at Austin
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Copyright Holder: KUT
Guest: Ruth Brown
Host: John L. Hanson
Producing Organization: KUT Radio
AAPB Contributor Holdings
KUT Radio
Identifier: IBA50-98 (KUT Radio)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 0:28:00
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Chicago: “In Black America; Blues Superstar with Ruth Brown,” 1998-10-01, KUT Radio, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed November 26, 2022,
MLA: “In Black America; Blues Superstar with Ruth Brown.” 1998-10-01. KUT Radio, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. November 26, 2022. <>.
APA: In Black America; Blues Superstar with Ruth Brown. Boston, MA: KUT Radio, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from