College feminists won't be alone this weekend in addressing women's rights. Saffire-The Uppity Blues Women will bring their passion and talent to Finney Chapel this Saturday for a female, middle-aged blues performance.
Producing five albums in a mere six years, this trio has received tremendous recognition for their "interplay of vocal harmonies, boogie-woogie piano, passionate guitar, smoky harmonica, spicy fiddle, bass and mandolin" playing, according to Alligator producers.
With lyrics that chronicle and lament the struggles and contradictions of a working woman's life, Saffire-The Uppity Blues Women do for blues what Mary Chapin Carpenter has done for country music.
Although Gaye Adegbalola (guitar/harmonica/vocals) won a W.C. Handy Award for Song of the Year for her composition, "The Middle Age Boogie Blues" in 1990 and Ann Rabson (piano/guitar/vocals) received a nomination for a 1995 W.C. Handy Award for Traditional Blues-Female Artist of the Year, the two probably would not have even fantasized of such recognition ten years ago.
Just before the release of the trio's self-tilted first album in 1990, Ann and Gaye quit their day jobs in order to devote their efforts to music as a full-time career. It seems they've been successful.
Concerned with talent rather than glamour, Saffire-The Uppity Blues Women are sure to engage and inspire both Oberlin students and their parents.
According to The Chicago Tribune, "These three middle-aged women look more like fugitives from a Tupperware party than a typical blues band. But appearances can be deceiving, as these musicians demonstrate...with their high-powered, take-no-prisoners approach."
Saffire-The Uppity Blues Women will be performing Saturday night in Finney Chapel at 8 p.m. Tickets are $4 for students and parents.
Uppity: Saffire is bringing their spirited blues-play to Finney Saturday.
Copyright © 1998, The Oberlin Review.
Volume 127, Number 8, November 6, 1998
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