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Gayl Jones

  • My great-grandmama told my grandmama the part she lived through that my grandmama didn't live through and my grandmama told my mama what they both lived through and my mama told me what they all lived through and we were suppose to pass it down like that from generation to generation so we'd never forget.

  • 'What do blues do for you?' 'It helps me to explain what I can't explain.'

  • I don't like that word 'discovery.' ... Sinatra was the first one to call Ray Charles a genius, he spoke of 'the genius of Ray Charles.' And after that everybody called him a genius. They didn't call him a genius before that though. He was a genius but they didn't call him that. ... If a white man hadn't told them, they wouldn't've seen it. ... Like, you know, they say Columbus discovered America, he didn't discover America.

  • She said there were two people you had to be true to — those people who came before you and those people who came after you.

Gayl Jones, U.S. writer

(1949)