Legacy Recordings Sets Digital Release of Bessie (Music from the HBO® Film) for Tuesday, May 12; CD Coming Tuesday, June 2
Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) Debuts “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle of Beer (2015 Remix),” Pairing Bessie Smith’s Original Recording with New Vocals by Queen Latifah and Enhanced Instrumentation Produced by Adam Blackstone and Queen Latifah
Album Includes Historic Blues and Swing Recordings by Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Sippie Wallace, Kid Ory & Fresh Interpretations of Bessie Smith Classics Performed by Queen Latifah
Bessie, an HBO Film, Premieres May 16
NEW YORK, April 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, is proud to announce the digital release of Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) on Tuesday, May 12. The official soundtrack for the upcoming HBO film will also be released on CD on Tuesday, June 2.
The biographic film Bessie, starring Queen Latifah as blues legend Bessie Smith, premieres on HBO on Saturday, May 16.
An evocative collection combining historic and contemporary recordings, Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) debuts seven new Queen Latifah performances including “Young Woman Blues,” “Preachin’ The Blues,” “Long Old Road,” “Down Hearted Blues,” “Work House Blues,” “Weepin’ Woman Blues” (a duet with vocalist Pat Bass) and “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle Of Beer (2015 Remix).”
Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) premieres “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle Of Beer (2015 Remix),” a postmodern reworking of Bessie Smith’s original recording featuring newly recorded vocals, ad-libs and raucous banter by Queen Latifah set to enhanced instrumentation remixed and produced by Adam Blackstone and Queen Latifah. “Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle Of Beer (2015 Remix)” is a dream collaboration between the Empress of the Blues and Queen Latifah that exemplifies the brilliance of each of the artists while celebrating the musical soul that unites their eras and generations.
“This is a project that has been close to my heart for many years….to not only star as Bessie Smith but to also produce the film and the soundtrack is a dream for me. Recording this music was an incredible journey and I am proud to be a part of it all.” – Queen Latifah
The album features modern performances of blues, jazz and swing classics including “Prove It On Me,” performed by Carmen Twillie; “See See Rider,” performed by Tamar-Kali; “Laugh Clown Laugh,” performed by Cecile McLorin Salvant; and two new instrumental arrangements from Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks: “I’ve Got What It Takes (But It Breaks My Heart To Give It Away)” and “Hot Time In The Old Town Tonight.”
Legacy Recordings’ Bessie (Music from the HBO Film) is rounded out with authentic period recordings from Fats Waller & His Rhythm (“A Good Man Is Hard To Find”), Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra (“[What Did I Do To Be So] Black And Blue”), Sippie Wallace (“I’m A Mighty Tight Woman”) and Kid Ory’s Creole Orchestra (“Ballin’ The Jack”).
Bessie (Music from the HBO Film)
1) Young Woman’s Blues – Queen Latifah
2) Hot Time In The Old Town – Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks
3) Prove It On Me – Carmen Twillie
4) Weary Blues – Louis Armstrong & His Hot Seven
5) Weepin’ Woman Blues – Queen Latifah & Pat Bass
6) See See Rider – Tamar-kali
7) Ballin’ The Jack – Kid Ory’s Creole Jazz Band
8) Down Hearted Blues – Queen Latifah
9) A Good Man Is Hard to Find – Fats Waller & His Rhythm
10) Preachin’ The Blues – Queen Latifah
11) I’ve Got What It Takes (But It Breaks My Heart To Give It Away) – Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks
12) Work House Blues – Queen Latifah
13) I’m a Mighty Tight Woman – Sippie Wallace
14) (What Did I Do to Be So) Black and Blue – Louis Armstrong And His Orchestra
15) Laugh, Clown, Laugh – Cecile McLorin Salvant
16) Long Old Road – Queen Latifah
17) Gimme A Pigfoot and A Bottle of Beer (2015 Remix) – Bessie Smith featuring Queen Latifah
An HBO Films presentation, Bessie stars Oscar® nominee Queen Latifah (“Chicago”) in the title role and focuses on legendary blues singer Bessie Smith’s transformation from a struggling young vocalist into “The Empress of the Blues,” one of the most successful recording artists of the 1920s and an enduring icon today.
Directed by Dee Rees from a screenplay by Rees and Christopher Cleveland & Bettina Gilois, with a story by Rees and Horton Foote, Bessie is executive produced by Richard D. Zanuck, Lili Fini Zanuck, Queen Latifah, Shakim Compere, Shelby Stone and Randi Michel. Ron Schmidt produces.
The film also stars Michael Kenneth Williams as Bessie’s husband, Jack Gee; Khandi Alexander as Bessie’s older sister, Viola; Tory Kittles as Bessie’s older brother, Clarence; Mike Epps as Richard, a bootlegger and romantic interest; Tika Sumpter as Lucille, a performer and romantic interest; Oliver Platt as famed photographer and writer Carl Van Vechten; Bryan Greenberg as renowned record producer and music critic John Hammond; with Charles S. Dutton as Ma Rainey’s husband, William “Pa” Rainey; and Oscar® winner Mo’Nique as blues legend Ma Rainey.
Bessie offers an intimate look at the determined woman whose immense talent and love for music took her from anonymity in the rough-and-tumble world of vaudeville to the 1920s blues scene and international fame. Capturing Bessie’s professional highs and personal lows, the film paints a portrait of a tenacious spirit who, despite her own demons, became a celebrated legend.
SOURCE Legacy Recordings