Sara Martin began her career as a vaudeville singer around 1915 in Illinois. In 1922 she was signed to a recording contract with Okeh Records by Clarence Williams. Williams wrote and played piano on a number of Martin's early records. Sarah Martin was said to have excelled as a live performer and was a star on the TOBA circuit in the early 1920s. She had a deep, full-bodied voice that compared favorably with Bessie Smith and Ma Rainey but lacked the emotional punch of those two singers. She often sounded a bit wooden, like she was reading the lyrics on her records, although her diction was impeccable. She recorded four sides with Clarence Williams that included King Oliver on cornet in 1928. "Death Sting Me Blues" from these sessions is one of her better records and shows Oliver to be a master of the Blues. While primarily a popular singer Martin could get low down on the blues and was billed as the "famous moanin' mama" as well as "the colored Sophie Tucker" reflecting her dual roles as a Blues and vaudeville performer. See toured the country until the early 1930s and recorded with Okeh until 1928. In 1929 she appeared in the film "Hello, Bill" with Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. The following year she appeared in the first all African-American sound film "Darktown Revue". When the blues fad died out in the early 1930s Sarah retired from show business, but continued to sing gospel. She returned to her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky during the Depression where she ran a nursing home. She died of a stroke in 1955. Sara Martin also recorded under the names of Margaret Johnson and Sally Roberts.

Sara Martin accompanied by W.C. Handy's Orchestra
Sara Martin and Clarence Williams Blue Five
Sara Martin accompanied by Clarence Williams' Harmonizers
Sara Martin and Clarence Williams' Harmonizing Four
Sara Martin accompanied by Clarence Williams' Orchestra
Sara Martin accompanied by her Jug Band
Sara Martin accompanied by Harry's Happy Four
Sara Martin accompanied by Richard M. Jones' Jazz Wizards
Title Recording Date Recording Location Company
Achin' Hearted Blues
Piano accompaniment by Clarence Williams

(Clarence Williams / Clarence Johnson / Spencer Williams)
10-1922 New York, New York Okeh
8041-B
A Glass Of Beer, A Hot Dog And You
(Porter Grainger / Leigh Whipper)
9-5-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8394-B
Blue Gum Blues
(W.C. Handy / Dave Elman)
8-6-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8097-A
Cage Of Apes
(Sara Martin / Maceo Pinkard)
9-26-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8172-A
Can't Find Nobody To Do Like My Daddy Do 4-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8214
Cruel Backbitin' Blues
(Lemuel Fowler)
4-27-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8063-A
Daddy, Ease This Pain Of Mine
(Sara Martin)
4-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8237-B
Don't Never Figure 3-24-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8354
Down At The Razor Ball
(Sara Martin)
11-5-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8283-A
Everybody's Got The Blues
(Sara Martin / Sylvester Weaver)
3-19-1924 Atlanta, Georgia Okeh
8136
Every Woman Needs A Man
(Sara Martin / Sylvester Weaver)
3-19-1924 Atlanta, Georgia Okeh
8146
Forget Me Not Blues 11-12-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8292
Georgia Stockade Blues
(Tom Delaney)
11-5-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8427-B
Give Me Just A Little Of Your Time 11-12-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8304
Goin' Down To The Levee
(W.M. Russell / Ed Herbert)
7-12-1923 New York, New York Okeh
4904-A
Goodbye Blues
(Sara Martin / Clarence Williams)
11-2-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8117-A
Got To Leave My Home Blues
(Sara Martin / Sylvester Weaver)
3-21-1924 Atlanta, Georgia Okeh
8146
Gonna Ramble Blues 4-7-1927 New York, New York Okeh
8485
Hesitation Blues
(W.C. Handy)
7-7-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8082-A
I Can Always Tell When A Man Is Treatin' Me Cool
(Sara Martin)
4-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8237-A
I'd Rather Be Blue Than Green
(Spencer Williams / Clarence Williams / Andy Razaf)
9-26-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8191-B
If I Don't Find My Brown I Won't Be Back At All (A)
(Sara Martin / Sylvester Weaver)
5-29-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8161-B
If I Don't Find My Brown I Won't Be Back At All (B)
(Sara Martin / Sylvester Weaver)
5-29-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8161-B
If You Don't Like It Leave
Piano Accompaniment by Clarence Williams

(Clarence Todd)
7-2-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8078-B
If Your Man Is Like My Man (I Sympathize With You)
(A.J. Piron)
4-9-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8063-B
I Got What It Takes To Bring You Back 4-9-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8062-B
I'm Cert'ny Gonna See 'Bout That
(Tony Jackson)
11-1-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8108-B
I'm Satisfied
(Don Heywood / Porter Grainger)
8-3-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8093
I'm Sorry Blues 4-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8249-A
I've Got To Go And Leave My Daddy Behind
Guitar accompaniment by Sylvester Weaver

(Sara Martin / Clarence Williams)
10-24-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8104-B
Jelly Blues 8-3-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8087
Joe Turner Blues
(W.C. Handy)
4-6-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8058-A
Just Thinkin' Blues
(Porter Grainger / Robert W. Ricketts)
7-2-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8084-B
Keeps On A-Rainin'
(Papa, He Can't Make No Time)

(Spencer Williams / Max Kortlander)
4-6-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8060-B
Last Go Round Blues
Piano accompaniment by Thomas Waller

(Jimmy Cox)
12-14-1922 New York, New York Okeh
8045-A
Leave My Sweet Daddy Alone
(Clarence Williams)
4-27-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8065-A
Longing For Daddy Blues
(Clarence Williams / Sara Martin)
10-24-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8117-B
Look Out, Mr. Jazz
(Porter Grainger / Leigh Whipper)
9-5-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8394-A
Mama's Got The Blues
Piano accompaniment by Thomas Waller

(Clarence Williams / Sara Martin)
12-14-1922 New York, New York Okeh
8045-B
Monkey Man Blues
(Lukie Johnson)
4-30-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8067-A
Mournful Blues
(Tom Delaney)
11-5-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8427-A
Michigan Water Blues
(Clarence Williams)
4-9-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8060-A
Mistreated Mama Blues
(Billy Smythe / Ben Brown / Syl Yunker)
7-27-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8086-A
My Good Man's Blues
(Mahalia's Blues)
8-3-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8087
My Man's Blues
(Clarence Williams / Sara Martin)
3-19-1924 Atlanta, Georgia Okeh
8136
Nobody Knows And Nobody Cares 11-12-1925 New York, New York Okeh
8304
New Orleans Hop Scop Blues
Piano Accompaniment by Clarence Williams

(George W. Thomas)
7-17-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8085-B
Nobody In Town Can Bake A Sweet Jelly Roll Like Mine
Piano Accompaniment by Clarence Williams

(Clarence Williams / Spencer Williams)
7-2-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8078-A
Numbers On The Brain
(Mike Jackson / Jack Lauria)
9-5-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8412-B
Old Fashioned Sara Blues
(Clarence Williams / Andy Razaf / Fats Waller)
9-26-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8249-B
Original Blues
(Shelton Brooks)
4-9-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8062-A
Pleading Blues 3-19-1924 Atlanta, Georgia Okeh
8161-A
Poor Me Blues 3-21-1924 Atlanta, Georgia Okeh
8226-B
Roamin' Blues
(Sara Martin / Clarence Williams)
11-2-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8104-A
Runnin' Round With The Blues 7-27-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8086-B
Shipwreaked Blues
(Clarence Williams)
9-5-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8412-A
Slow Down Sweet Papa Mama's Catching Up With You 8-6-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8097-B
Sobbin' Hearted Blues
(Perry Bradford / Roy C. Layer / George Davis)
9-26-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8172-B
Some Blues (No Name Blues) 9-24-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8226-A
Squabbling Blues
(Clarence Williams / Sara Martin)
11-1-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8108-A
Strange Lovin' Blues
(Sara Martin)
4-1925 St. Louis, Missouri Okeh
8214-A
Sugar Blues
Piano accompaniment by Clarence Williams

(Clarence Williams)
10-17-1922 New York, New York Okeh
8041-A
Sweet Man Was The Cause Of It All
(Clarence Williams / Sara Martin)
7-25-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8088-A
Sympathizing Blues
(Phil Worde / Godfrey)
7-25-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8088-B
'Tain't Nobody's Bizness If I Do
(Porter Grainger / Everett Robbins)
12-1-1922 New York, New York Okeh
8043-B
Teasing Brown Blues 4-7-1927 New York, New York Okeh
8485
That Dance Called Messin' Around 3-24-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8308
That Free And Easy Papa O' Mine
(Sam Walker / Clarence Williams)
7-7-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8082-B
The Dance Called Messin' Around 3-24-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8308
Tired O' Waitin' Blues
(Porter Grainger / Bob Ricketts)
7-12-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8084-A
Too Late To Get My Baby Back
(Sara Martin)
5-29-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8154-B
Troubled Blues
(Sara Martin / Porter Grainger)
8-3-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8093
Uncle Sam Blues
Piano Accompaniment by Clarence Williams

(Sara Martin / Clarence Williams)
7-17-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8085-A
What Kind Of Man Is You? 9-24-1924 New York, New York Okeh
8191-A
Where Can That Somebody Be?
(Fred Rose / Irving Mills)
7-2-1923 New York, New York Okeh
4904-B
Ye Shall Reap Just What You Sow
(Alex Robinson)
7-12-1923 New York, New York Okeh 8083-A
Yodeling Blues 5-4-1923 New York, New York Okeh
8067-B
You Got Everything A Sweet Mama Needs But Me
Piano accompaniment by Thomas Waller

(Lemuel Fowler)
12-1-1922 New York, New York Okeh
8043-A
You Don't Want Me Honey 3-24-1926 New York, New York Okeh
8354
You Just Can't Have No One Man By Yourself
(Mercedes Gilbert / James P. Johnson)
7-12-1923 New York, New York Okeh 8083-B
Artist Instrument
Shelton Brooks Piano
Clarence Johnson Piano
Tom Morris Cornet
Eva Taylor Vocals
Clarence Williams Piano
Fats Waller Piano
Sylvester Weaver Guitar
Title Director Year
Hello, Bill Edward F. Hurley 1929
Darktown Revue Oscar Micheaux 1931




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