Tina Mayfield, widow of songwriter Percy Mayfield and benefactor of blues musicians, died Dec. 14 of gallbladder cancer in Palmdale, Calif. She was 77.
A lifelong blues fan, Mayfield provided assistance to blues musicians, worked to secure royalty payments and booked gigs. She befriended and assisted musicians such as Lowell Fulson and Big Mama Thornton, created the California Black Blues Society and worked in the International Blues Society.
Born Earnestine Jermany in Stamps, Ark., Mayfield married, had five children and moved around the country working as a nurse and taking in local blues scenes. She befriended Percy Mayfield and moved to Los Angeles in 1972, becoming his right-hand woman. They married in 1984, the same year he died.
In the ’90s, she helped singer Barbara Morrison open a cultural center in Inglewood.
She is survived by her children from her first marriage.