Ina Ray Hutton--born Odessa Cowen in 1916 in Chicago--was a mixed-race African-American but would go on to pass as white during her musical career as a successful performer and bandleader.
In 1934, Hutton became the bandleader to a group of female musicians: Ina Ray Hutton and Her Melodears.
In 1951, she created the Ina Hutton Show, a tv show that featured an all-female band and ran for four years.
Hutton died in 1984 in California. It was only after her death that her racial and ethnic identity were revealed by a reporter, Phyllis Fletcher
Mixed Experience History Month is the annual blog post series created by writer Heidi Durrow celebrating the history of the Mixed experience. Established in 2007, Mixed Experience History Month is an effort to highlight the long history of folks involved in the Mixed experience. Please look for more profiles of people, places and events of the Mixed experience every weekday of May at Lightskinned-ed Girl, the blog! Thanks for reading. And check out some of the previous year's profiles: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011.