Bessie Smith was known for her great interpretation of the music. What
does it mean to have great interpretation of music? Can someone get
this from just practicing? How do you think Bessie achieved this talent?
Several of the Red Hot Mamas were not very attractive. In todays
society, do you believe that they would be as successful as they were
in their day? Why or why not? In what ways does the way you look influence
how far you go in your profession?
Thats the cats meow! In the 1920s there were
many different slang phrases that were very popular to use. What kinds
of slang words or phrases do you use? Are there any phrases that you
used to use but dont anymore? Why do you think slang words and
phrases come and go as quickly as they do?
What Red Hot Mama would you want to meet? What would you want to say
to her or ask her? Why would you want to meet this Red Hot Mama and
not another? Is there a Red Hot Mama that you would not want to meet?
Why are the Animal Dances important to discuss when we talk about
the Red Hot Mamas? Are there any dances that people do today that might
be just as significant as the Animal Dances? What are they and why?
What kind of styles that the Red Hot Mamas used made their voices
so attractive to their audiences? Do those same styles work today?
Are there any singers today that you would consider Red Hot Mamas?
What character traits do they share with the first Red Hot Mamas? What,
in your mind, makes a person a Red Hot Mama?
Many of the Red Hot Mamas had tough childhoods and had to overcome
many huge obstacles. How do you think these aspects of their lives influenced
their music? Have you ever had to overcome a challenge in your life?
How did it affect you?
Women went through a radical change in society during the time of the
Red Hot Mamas. In what ways, if any, do you believe the Red Hot Mamas
influenced these changes?
Slavery is said to have given birth to jazz and blues music.
Do you believe this? Why or why not? What other major political and
social events have influenced jazz?