Set your DVR’s if you’re going to be out on the town. The HBO movie premiere of BESSIE starring Queen Latifah airs TONIGHT at 8PM EST! I was able to see this fascinating story of the legendary blues singer at the Atlanta screening and costume display. Believe me when I say… “YOU DON”T WANT TO MISS THIS! “
Here’s Queen Latifah greeting us from the big screen!
Never heard of Bessie Smith: The Empress of the Blues until Queen Latifah brought her story to life. She was a popular blues singer during the 20’s & 30’s and I’ve been obsessed with learning more about her life. It’s a good testament to the movie & Queen Latifah because she draws you into every song, every word and movement. Bessie, known for her relationships with both sexes was a complicated but intriguing woman who lived how SHE wanted to live. Who’s better to portray the role than someone with a true passion and understanding of individuality.
Taken from Uptown Magazine:
“People’s ideas in general are antiquated when it comes to who you love,” Latifah explained, specifically focusing on the gay black community. “We haven’t moved as quickly as we probably should. And the reality is that there’s always been gay people in the black community, so it’s not foreign to us. And not just as a black community but just a society as a whole.”
“Who you choose to marry is really up to you and it’s not something you should be judged on. I don’t find being gay or lesbian to be a character flaw. Couples should be protected under the laws of this country period. It actually angers me. It’s not unusual so let’s be adults and let’s move forward.” –Queen Latifah
While at the Atlanta premiere I noticed a display of costumes. This was out of the ordinary so to be honest… I snapped a few pics “just because”. To my delight… there were actually a few moments during the film which highlighted the dresses and the shoes! The variety in Bessie’s clothing helped us to understand the dynamics of the woman behind the voice. Born in Chattanooga TN she lived a difficult childhood losing her mother at the age of 9… and raised by her older sister Viola. Bessie had a love for singing the blues and emerged from her surroundings with her older brother Clarence, joined forces with Ma Rainey (Mother of the Blues played by Mo’Nique) then went on to became one of the most beloved singers of her time.
On September 26, 1937 Bessie Smith died from a car accident at the age of 43. I took a few minutes to listen to some of her music and boy oh boy… she was truly a treasure.
BRAVO to the Queen who waited 2 decades to bring us BESSIE… at the right time, the right production team and the right CAST!
Take a listen: