This is a continuation of my first book interview with Ruby. We had known each other for some time and the rapport was already in place. If you wish to hear the first part of this interview, here is a direct link.
If you heard the portions that were released on CD by Columbia, you may recognize a passage or two, but this is, basically, the raw tape. I added a qualifier, because I made a couple of edits to remove brief extraneous passages. I left in the advice Ruby gave to Mingus, my doberman, because it's funny. Also intact is Ruby's notion of what happened the night Bessie's fatal accident took place, her impression of Bessie's relationship with Richard Morgan, and young Bessie being kidnapped by "gypsies." As she admitted, these views were based on hearsay; they contrast the first-hand observations I heard and often also the facts turned up by research. When Ruby had read the published book, I asked her to tell me if I had written anything with which she disagreed—her answer was that she hadn't.
|Ruby's advice to my doberman, Mingus|
Apropos first-hand accounts, you will likely be amused by Ruby's recollection of meeting Ma Rainey when Bessie took her backstage. It's in my book, but much better when you hear Ruby tell it.