When I heard Taylor had died, my mind went to a single song, though she performed many. Still, “Wang Dang Doodle” was somewhat anthemic in Taylor’s hands, a call to good times and living well and the sexual overtones never seemed accidental.
Born Cora Walton in 1928, Taylor was a sharecropper’s daughter from Shelby County, Tennessee. Her final public performance was just days ago at the Blues Music Awards on May 7th.
The Daily Telegraph offers up a royal obituary:
Famously capable of standing up for herself, and tolerating no nonsense from any of her male colleagues, she recently declared: "It's tough being out there doing what I'm doing in what they call a man's world." With her big, raw "blues shouter" of a voice, she took her cues from the likes of Bessie Smith, Big Mamma Thornton and Memphis Minnie, later influencing an entire generation of younger female blues artists.