Facts about Willie Thornton

Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton died at 57 years old
Best known as: Blues legend and original singer of "Hound Dog"



Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton Biography

Willie Mae Thornton toured the south as a blues singer in the 1940s, earning the nickname ‘Big Mama’ both for her powerful voice and her ample girth. She wrote and sang blues songs, played the harmonica and taught herself to play the drums.

In 1953 she had a hit with “Hound Dog,” the song later made even more famous by Elvis Presley. In the 1960s “Big Mama” Thornton moved from Texas to California and continued to tour throughout America and Europe. She was inducted into the Blues Foundation’s Hall of Fame in 1984.


Something in Common with Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton