Individual Author Record
Name: Beth GaronPen Name: None Genre: Non-Fiction Born: Sites:
Illinois ConnectionBeth lives and works in Chicago.
Biographical and Professional InformationBeth and her husband author Paul Garon currently own and operate Beasley Books, a bookstore in Chicago. It is a bookstore of rare first editions and collectible books on subjects such as African American studies, labor history, psychiatry / psychoanalysis and one of the largest stocks in the US of scarce and out of print books on jazz and blues. Some of the store's best books are on display at Chicago Rare Book Center, in Evanston, Illinois.
- Woman With Guitar: Memphis Minnie's Blues (with Paul Garon), Da Capo Press, 1998
Titles At Your Library
Woman With Guitar: Memphis Minnie's Blues
ISBN: 0306804603 Da Capo Press. 1992
Universally recognized as one of the greatest blues artists, Memphis Minnie (1897–1973) wrote and recorded hundreds of songs, among them the famous "Bumble Bee Blues," "I'm Talking About You," and "What's the Matter with the Mill?" Blues people as diverse as Muddy Waters, Johnny Shines, Big Mama Thornton, and Chuck Berry have acknowledged her as a major influence. At a time when most female vocalists sang Tin Pan Alley material, Minnie write her own lyrics and accompanied her singing with magnificent guitar-playing. Thanks to her merciless imagination and dark humor, her songs rank among the most vigorous and challenging popular poetry in any language. Although organized feminism was at it's lowest ebb, Memphis Minnie, a black working-class woman, called no man master, defied gender stereotypes, and exemplified a radically adventurous life-style that makes most careers of the '20s and '30s seem dull by comparison. Woman with Guitar is the first full-length study of the life and work of this extraordinary free spirit, focusing on the lively interplay between Minnie's evolving artistry and the African American community in which she lived and worked. Drawing on folklore, psychoanalysis, critical theory, women's studies, and surrealism, the Garons' inspired explorations of Minnie's songs illuminate the poetics of popular culture as well as the largely hidden history of working-class women's self emancipation.