Profiles of LGBT people, from the past and today – and celebrating their birthdays! All Birthdays →

Gertrude "Ma" Rainey

Gertrude “Ma” Rainey was born on April 26, 1888, in Columbus, Georgia. Rainey was a prominent blues singer and recording artist and was often credited as the “Mother of the Blues.” For more about her “resistance anthem” of lesbian self-affirmation, see Ma Rainey's "Prove It On Me Blues," 1928, by Jonathan Ned Katz.