Trapeze Catalogue

Big Mama Thornton Singles Collection 1951-61

Big Mama Thornton Singles Collection 1951-61

Stock Status: In Stock

Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton was an rhythm and blues and blues singer and songwriter, who is best-known for recording the original 1953 version of the legendary song “Hound Dog”, which Elvis Presley famously covered. Born in Alabama in 1925, she learnt to sing in church but became a disciple of Bessie Smith and Memphis Minnie, moving in 1948 to Houston, Texas, a buzzing centre of jump blues, where she built a reputation as a powerful performer and signed a contract with Don Robey’s Peacock Records in 1951. Working with Johnny Otis and the emerging young song writing and producing duo of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, she recorded their song “Hound Dog”, and it provided her with her sole career hot, topping the US R&B charts, and becoming a landmark record.

This contains all her releases during the first decade of her career, initially for the Peacock label and then for the small Irma and Bay-Tone labels after she moved to San Francisco in the late ‘50s. She later became a popular performer during the ‘60s blues boom and made several albums. She was a powerful extrovert expressive artist, and this collection represents her output from a key era of her career.


When it comes to debating the greatest male voices to emerge in the fifties, Howlin’ Wolf and Little Richard are always fighting it out at the top of the league. When it comes to putting the fairer sex under the spotlight, Willie Mae ‘Big Mamma’ Thornton is also always up there fighting for honours. And quite rightly so for a singer who was built like a heavyweight boxer and blessed with a pair of leather lungs that at their most ferocious, were capable of stopping a clock and making Brian Blessed’s booming vox box sound like a rat’s fart. Alternatively, in more emotive moments, she had the ability to pull at the heart-strings like the Blessed Mary. A Big Mama CD is for life and not just for lockdown!  –  Pete O'Gorman (Now Dig This Issue 448)

Disc 1
Track Title Artist
1 Partnership Blues Willie Mae Thornton
2 I'm All Fed Up Willie Mae Thornton
3 No Jody For Me Willie Mae Thornton
4 Let Your Tears Fall Baby Willie Mae Thornton
5 Mischievous Boogie Willie Mae Thornton
6 Every Time I Think Of You Willie Mae Thornton
7 Hound Dog Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
8 Night Mare Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
9 Cotton Picking Blues Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
10 They Call Me Big Mama Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
11 I Ain't No Fool Either Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
12 The Big Change Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
13 I Smell A Rat Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
14 I've Searched The Whole World Over Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
15 Stop A Hoppin' On Me Willie Mae Thornton
16 Story Of My Blues Willie Mae Thornton
17 Rock A Bye Baby Willie Mae Thornton
18 Walking Blues Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton
19 The Fish Willie M. Thornton
20 Laugh, Laugh, Laugh Willie M. Thornton
21 How Come Willie Mae Thornton
22 Tarzan And The Dignified Monkey Willie Mae Thornton & Elroy Peace
23 Just Like A Dog (Barking Up The Wrong Tree) Willie Mae Thornton
24 My Man Called Me Willie Mae Thornton
25 Don't Talk Back Big Mama Thornton And The Hi Tones
26 Big Mama's Coming Home Big Mama Thornton And The Hi Tones
27 You Did Me Wrong Big "Mama" Thornton
28 Big Mama's Blues Big "Mama" Thornton
  • EAN:
  • Discs:
  • Run Time:
    72 mins
  • Artist:
    Big Mama Thornton
  • Release:
    June 2020
  • Brand:
  • Product Code:
  • Weight: