Moanin' Bernice Edwards

b. c.1910, Houston, Texas, USA. Bernice Edwards was described by Beulah ‘Sippie’ Wallace as being ‘one of the family’; the family in question was Sippie’s own renowned Thomas Family of Houston,…
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Artist Biography

b. c.1910, Houston, Texas, USA. Bernice Edwards was described by Beulah ‘Sippie’ Wallace as being ‘one of the family’; the family in question was Sippie’s own renowned Thomas Family of Houston, Bernice being the same age as its most gifted member, the child prodigy Hersal Thomas. From another member of the family, Hociel Thomas, she learned to play the piano and sing the blues. She remained in Houston when the family moved north and was often in the company of Black Boy Shine (Harold Holiday). When she recorded for Paramount in 1928 these influences were evident in her introspective ‘moanin’ blues and her piano style. When she attended her third and last session (for ARC in 1935) she was in the company of Holiday and one record was issued by her, Holiday and Howling Smith together. Apart from the fact that she later married and joined the church, little more is known.