I Dreamed Last Night I Was Far From Harm

Ma Rainey, a figure almost forgotten, was dubbed Mother of the Blues during her heyday of the first two decades in the 20th century. Traveling throughout the South and the Mississippi Delta with vaudeville shows, she was a major figure in the popularization of the blues. Her songs, “See See Rider Blues” and “Backwater Blues” have been recognized by the Grammy Hall of Fame and the Library of Congress as culturally and historically significant. Because of poor production values, Ma Rainey’s recordings for Paramount studios are appreciated only by a handful of aficionados. Her voice and delivery, however, made a powerful impact upon her fans of the day, and her subject matter was sometimes daring, even for the blues. The song featured in “I Dreamed Last Night I Was Far From Harm” reintroduces a 1926 composition that was shocking for its era but will find its place in American minority history. Subtitles obviate the difficulty of grasping the lyrics, and period clips amusingly illustrate and comment on the subject matter.

Official Selection

Austin Gay and Lesbian Film Festival

Chicago Intl. REEL Shorts Film Festival

Atlanta Gay and Lesbian Film Festival

Out on Film (Atlanta LGBT)

Oakland International Film Festival

On Location: Memphis International Film & Music Festival