Ella Fitzgerald for the blues set, Big Mama was the original singer of 'Hound Dog' and the first lady of growling. Sang with the Johnny Otis band, where she ripped through 'Hound Dog'... it became a #1 hit in '53. Sang other great songs on the Peacock label in the 50s ('I Smell A Rat') but hit a dry spell. Came back into fashion when Janis Joplin started championing her work, but never was truly successful again. Died in the early 80s (cancer?).

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