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A Birth of the Blues

A YouTube History of Music

Modern Blues 1

Guitar - Bass - Violin

Group & Last Name Index to Full History:


Tracks are listed in chronological order by year, then alphabetically.

Listings do not reflect proper order by month or day: later oft precedes earlier.

Not on this page? See history tree below.



Elvin Bishop    Mike Bloomfield    Blues Project    Lonnie Brooks    Clarence Gatemouth Brown    Roy Buchanan    Eddie Burns    RL Burnside
Eric Clapton    Eddy Clearwater     Climax Blues Band    Albert Collins    Pee Wee Crayton    Papa John Creach    Arthur Crudup
Barbara Dane    Reverend Gary Davis    Willie Dixon
David Honeyboy Edwards
Lowell Fulson
Peter Green    Guitar Shorty    Guitar Slim (Eddie Jones)    Buddy Guy  
Silas Hogan    Earl Hooker    John Lee Hooker    Lightning Hopkins    Long John Hunter
Elmore James    Homesick James    Jimmy Johnson (James Earl Thompson)   Syl Johnson (Sylvester Thompson)    Eddie Jones (Guitar Slim)    Floyd Jones    Moody Jones
Junior Kimbrough    Albert King    BB King    Earl King    Freddie King    Eddie Kirkland
Alvin Lee    Mance Lipscomb    Robert Lockwood
Lonnie Mack    Bob Margolin    Mississippi Fred McDowell    Brownie McGhee   Taj Mahal
Robert Nighthawk
Charlie Patton    Robert Petway
Bonnie Raitt    Louisiana Red    Jimmy Reed    Jimmy Rogers    Otis Rush
Magic Sam    Savoy Brown    Johnny Shines    Frankie Lee Sims    Lightnin' Slim    Magic Slim    Pops Staples    Hubert Sumlin    Lonesome Sundown
Eddie Taylor    Sister Rosetta Tharpe    Hound Dog Taylor    Henry Townsend
Stevie Ray Vaughan
Phillip Walker    Muddy Waters    Jody Williams    Robert Pete Williams    Johnny Winter    Howling Wolf
Mighty Joe Young



Featured on this page loosely in order of first recording if not record release (as possible).

Names are alphabetical, not chronological, per year:



Henry Townsend

1935 Reverend Gary Davis
1938 Sister Rosetta Tharpe
1940 Willie Dixon    Brownie McGhee
1941 Arthur Crudup    Robert Lockwood    Muddy Waters
1942 David Honeyboy Edwards
1946 Pee Wee Crayton    Papa John Creach    Lowell Fulson    Lightning Hopkins    Jimmy Rogers
1947 Clarence Gatemouth Brown
1948 John Lee Hooker    Floyd Jones    Moody Jones    Frankie Lee Sims
1949 Eddie Burns    BB King    Louisiana Red
1951 Howling Wolf    Elmore James    Eddie Kirkland
1952 Guitar Slim (Eddie Jones)    Earl Hooker    Homesick James    Pops Staples
1953 Albert King    Earl King   Jimmy Reed     Johnny Shines    Eddie Taylor
1954 Long John Hunter    Lightnin' Slim    Hubert Sumlin    Jody Williams
1955 Phillip Walker
1956 Freddie King    Lonesome Sundown    Otis Rush
1957 Lonnie Brooks    Barbara Dane    Buddy Guy    Magic Sam    Guitar Shorty    Mighty Joe Young
1958 Roy Buchanan    Eddy Clearwater    Albert Collins    Lonnie Mack
1959 Silas Hogan    Syl Johnson (Sylvester Thompson)    Johnny Winter
1960 Mance Lipscomb    Mississippi Fred McDowell
1961 Robert Pete Williams
1963 Eric Clapton
1964 Elvin Bishop    Mike Bloomfield    Jimmy Johnson (James Earl Thompson)    Alvin Lee
1965 Taj Mahal
1966 Blues Project    Peter Green    Magic Slim
1967 Savoy Brown    Junior Kimbrough    Bob Margolin
1969 RL Burnside    Climax Blues Band
1971 Bonnie Raitt    Hound Dog Taylor    Stevie Ray Vaughan


  We demarcate rather arbitrarily between early and modern blues at about World War II. This page concerns blues by musicians who played guitar. For those who played other instruments such as harmonica or piano, or sang modern blues, see Blues 4. For blues from their inception see Early Blues 1 (guitar) or Early Blues 2 (vocals and other instruments).



Both a guitarist and pianist, Henry Townsend managed to record for nine consecutive decades, from 1929 to 2006, the year he died. Born in Shelby, Mississippi, in 1909, Townsend left home for St. Louis at age nine, which became his main domicile the rest of his life. Townsend published more than 350 compositions during his career.

Henry Townsend   1929

   Henry Worry Blues

Henry Townsend   1931

   Jack Of Diamonds

Henry Townsend   1935

   Every Day I Have the Blues

      With the Sparks Brothers

   I Don't Love That Woman

   She's Got a Mean Disposition

Henry Townsend   1962

   All My Money's Gone

   Cairos' My Baby's Home

   The Train Is Coming

Henry Townsend   1973

   Buz Buz Buz

Henry Townsend   1980

   Talkin' Guitar Blues

Henry Townsend   1984

   I Got Tired

Henry Townsend   1999

   Don't You Remember Me?


Birth of the Blues: Henry Townsend

Henry Townsend

Source: Document Records


As were so many blues musicians, Reverend Gary Davis was blind, Davis since an infant. Born in 1896 in South Carolina, Davis was the only one of eight children to survive to adulthood. His father had been shot and killed by a Birmingham sheriff when he was ten. But before his death his father had arranged that Davis be given to the care of his paternal grandmother, as his mother treated him poorly. Alike Reverend Robert Wilkins (Blues 1), Davis became an ordained Christian minister (Baptist, in 1933) and experienced a turning away from secular blues to gospel. His first record release followed two years later (1935) with the American Recording Company. Davis died of heart attack in May 1962.

Reverend Gary Davis   1935

   I Am the Light

   I Saw the Light

   You Got to Go Down

   Keep Your Lamp Trimmed and Burning

   Candy Man

   Cocaine Blues

   Mountain Jack

   Seven Sisters

   Death Don't Have No Mercy


Birth of the Blues: Reverend Gary Davis

Reverend Gary Davis

Source:  Down at the Crossroads



Born in Cotton Plant, Arkansas, in 1915, gospel singer and guitarist Sister Rosetta Tharpe released her first four recordings in 1938, 'My Man and I', below, among them. Tharpe began her guitar and singing career as a young child tagging along behind her mother who was a traveling evangelist and gospel singer. Like other musicians who had difficulty reconciling religion with secular music, Tharpe had the same trouble, but blended the twain, not without controversy, nevertheless. The same year she released her first recordings Tharpe was hired by Cab Calloway. She would next record with Lucky Millender. Albeit Tharpe was religiously sincere and would have preferred to perform strictly gospel music, success upon need of a paycheck found her in a compromised "situation" in which the performance of secular music, or gospel amidst a secular atmosphere, got her ostracized by some of the religious community. A stroke in 1970 put an end to Tharpe's performing career, after which she had to have a leg amputated due to diabetes. She died in 1973. Tharpe will also be found in Swing Song and A Birth of Rock and Roll.

Sister Rosetta Tharpe   1938

   My Man and I

Sister Rosetta Tharpe   1941

   Stand By Me

Sister Rosetta Tharpe   1961

   Lonesome Road


Birth of the Blues: Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Source: Roq n Rol

Birth of the Blues: Willie Dixon

Willie Dixon

Source: Darius

Born in 1915 in Vicksburg, Mississippi, Willie Dixon, double bass, was a boxer before turning to music in 1939, the result of meeting Leonard Caston at a gym, who built him his first bass, consisting of a tin can with one string. His first recording ('Baby Doo', unfound) followed the next year, with Caston, in a group called the Five Breezes. Dixon's budding career, however, would be interrupted by incarceration for ten months as a conscientious objector. In 1945 Dixon shaped a band called the Four Jumps of Jive, then got together with Caston again to form the Big Three Trio. For much of Dixon's career he doubled as a record producer, working for various labels (most notably Chess) until he brought forth his own, Yamba Records. In 1987 Dixon settled out of court with the rock band, Led Zeppelin, concerning a couple of his songs, 'Bring It On Home' (royalties long gone unpaid by Arc Music) and 'You Need Love'. Dixon had long-term diabetes which would eventually necessitate the amputation of a leg. He died of heart failure in Burbank, California, January 19, 1992.

Willie Dixon   1946

   The Signifying Monkey

   You Sure Look Good To Me

Willie Dixon   1947

   Just Can't Let Her Be

   What Am I To Do

Willie Dixon   1948

   I Keep On Worrying

      With Rosetta Howard

Willie Dixon   1962

   The Right Time

      Drums: Jump Jackson   Piano: T-Bone Walker

      Guitar and vocal: John Lee Hooker

Willie Dixon   1969

   I Ain't Superstitious

   The Little Red Rooster


   You Shook Me

Willie Dixon   1988

   Blues You Can't Lose



Born in Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1915, Brownie McGhee decided to become a traveling minstrel at age 22. His career took a decided turn upward upon going to New York City in 1942 to partner with Sonny Terry, whom he'd met on the road a couple years earlier. His partnership with Terry would last throughout their lives. Among the highlights of their partnership were recordings with British trombonist, Chris Barber, in 1958 in England. Their first at Free Trade Hall in Manchester on April 26, McGhee performing guitar and vocals on 'This Little Light of Mine' and 'Glory'. Their last session with Barber was on May 12 in London for the BBC broadcast, 'MBB', McGhee performing on 'Midnight Special' and 'John Henry'. Terry plays harmonica on many of the tracks below. Among examples of recordings by McGhee not involving Terry were those at a concert at Oakdale Musical Theatre in Wallingford, Connecticut, on September 26, 1958, getting issued on an album by various in 1959 titled 'The Seven Ages of Jazz'. In addition to garnering high regard as a blues musician easy to appreciate, McGhee was also an actor on Broadway, as well in film and television. He died of stomach cancer on February 16, 1996.

Brownie McGhee   1940

   Dealing With the Devil

   Not Guilty Blues

Brownie McGhee   1941

   Death of Blind Boy Fuller

Brownie McGhee   1946

   Mean Old Frisco

Brownie McGhee   1947

   Baseball Boogie

Brownie McGhee   1958

   Guitar Highway

   Livin' With the Blues

Brownie McGhee   1960

   I've Been Buked & I've Been Scorned

      With Lightnin' Hopkins and Big Joe Williams

Brownie McGhee   1963

   Key to the Highway

Brownie McGhee   1966

   Born and Livin' With The Blues

   Cornbread and Peas

Brownie McGhee   1976

   Hootin' the Blues

Brownie McGhee   1992

   Death of Blind Boy Fuller


Birth of the Blues: Brownie McGhee

Brownie McGhee

Source: Blues Everyday

Birth of the Blues: Arthur Crudup

Arthur Crudup

Source: Original People

Born in 1905 in Forest, Mississippi, Arthur Crudup began his adult life as a migrant worker. He began singing gospel with a group called the Harmonizing Four, with which he made his way from Mississippi to Chicago. There opting for a solo career, he was busking on the streets, living in a packing crate, when he was introduced to Tampa Red by Lester Melrose of RCA Bluebird, who also signed him to Crudup's first recording contract in 1940. Despite Crudup's recordings he had to support his music throughout much of career as a bootlegger and laborer. He died in Virginia in 1974. (More Arthur Crudup to be found in Rock & Roll Development.)

Arthur Crudup   1941

   Black Pony Blues

   Death Valley Blues

   If I Get Lucky

Arthur Crudup   1942

   My Mama Don't Allow

Arthur Crudup   1944

   Rock Me Mama

Arthur Crudup   1951

   I'm Gonna Dig Myself a Hole

Arthur Crudup   1952

   Gonna Find My Baby



Born in 1915 in Helena, Arkansas, guitarist Robert Lockwood made his first recording, 'Black Spider Blues', with blues vocalist Doctor Clayton in 1941. Lockwood began playing professionally throughout the Mississippi Delta as a teenager. During those young years he also played with such as Johnny Shines and Sonny Boy Williamson II. One story has him playing on one side of the Sunflower River with Robert Johnson playing on the other, some of the audience on the bridge between. Johnson eventually settled from an itinerate lifestyle in Chicago in 1950, until moving to Cleveland in 1961 where he continued to record while playing gigs at local bars. His last recordings were with Cleveland Fats and Billy Branch in 2006, on the album, 'The Way Things Go'. He died November 1 the same year, age ninety-one.

Robert Lockwood   1941

   Black Spider Blues

      With Doctor Clayton

   I'm Gonna Train My Baby

Robert Lockwood   1951

   I'm Gonna Dig Myself a Hole

Robert Lockwood   1996

   I Gotta Find Me a Woman


Birth of the Blues: Robert Lockwood

Robert Lockwood

Birth of the Blues: Muddy Waters

Muddy Waters

Source: Morrison Hotel Gallery

Born McKinley Morganfield in 1913 in Mississippi, Muddy Waters released his first recording, 'Country Blues', in 1941. He got the first part of his name from his grandmother, who raised him upon his mother's death, because he liked to play in the muddy waters of nearby Deer Creek. Waters had early started playing harmonica, but bought himself a guitar at age seventeen, first learning to play in the bottleneck (slide) style. Soon playing both solo and with a group called the Son Simms Four, Waters then opened a juke joint and played there as well. The sovereign of Chicago blues didn't make it to Chicago until 1943, where he began playing electric guitar in 1945, a gift from an uncle which served him well. It was upon forming with his own band around 1950 that Waters began coming fore as a musician to high recognition. That early band (1952 through 1954 below) would consist of Elga Evans (drums), Little Walter (harmonica), Jimmy Rogers (guitar) and Otis Spann (piano), with contributions by bassist Willie Dixon. Waters toured England for the first time in 1958, again in 1972 toward 'The London Muddy Waters Sessions'. He would join trombonist, Chris Barber, at Alexandra Palace in London in July of 1979 for 'Kansas City', 'Lend Me Your Love' and 'Corrine Corrina'. Other highlights of his career include Newport Jazz Festivals. One in 1960 resulted in his first live LP, 'At Newport 1960'. Another in 1965 found him with Dizzy Gillespie performing 'Got My Mojo Working' (Preston Foster). Water's last album, 'King Bee', was issued in 1981. His last performance was with Eric Clapton in 1982, dying the next year of heart failure at his home in Illinois. Rock band, the Rolling Stones, took their name from 'Rollin' Stone' below. Waters will be found in A Birth of Rock & Roll 2 as well.

Muddy Waters   1941  

   Country Blues

Muddy Waters   1950  

   Rollin' Stone (Catfish Blues)

Muddy Waters   1951

   Lonesome Day

Muddy Waters   1954

   Hoochie Coochie Man

   I Just Want to Make Love to You

   I'm Ready

Muddy Waters   1966

   Got My Mojo Workin'

      Live performance

Muddy Waters   1969

   All Aboard

      Album: 'Fathers and Sons'

   Long Distance Call

      Album: 'Fathers and Sons'

   Baby, Please Don't Go/Honey Bee

      Album: 'Fathers and Sons'

Muddy Waters   1971

   Manish Boy

      Live performance

Muddy Waters   1977  

   Champagne & Reefer

Muddy Waters   1978

   Who Do You Trust

Muddy Waters   1981

   I'm a King Bee

      Live in Chicago

   I'm a King Bee



Birth of the Blues: David Honeyboy Edwards

David Honeyboy Edwards

Photo: Paul Natkin

Source: Paul Natkin

Born in 1915 in Shaw, Mississippi, David Honeyboy Edwards began his career in Delta blues at age 14, traveling with Big Joe Williams. Edwards would pursue an itinerate lifestyle until settling in Chicago in the early fifties. His first recordings are thought to be in 1942 for David Lomax of the Library of Congress. His autobiography, 'The World Don't Owe Me Nothing', was published in 1997. Edwards died of heart failure in 2011.

David Honeyboy Edwards   1942

   The Army Blues

   I Love My Jelly Roll

   Wind Howlin' Blues

David Honeyboy Edwards   1951

   Build a Cave

   Who May Your Regular Be

David Honeyboy Edwards   1953

   Drop Down Mama

David Honeyboy Edwards   1969

   Black Jack Blues

David Honeyboy Edwards   2010

   Sweet Home Chicago

      Live performance

David Honeyboy Edwards   2011

   Sweet Home Chicago

      Live performance



Born Connie Curtis Crayton in Rockdale, Texas, in 1914, Pee Wee Crayton left Texas for Los Angeles in 1935, where he became employed at a shipyard. Need to escape no doubt drove him to get more serious with his guitar, forming a trio and turning professional about year 1945. Crayton may have first shown up on vinyl per a session in Oakland in 1946 in the band of Ivory Joe Hunter, putting down such as 'Seventh Street Boogie' (Pacific 601) and 'Tavern Swing' (Pacific 609) among others. As many sources as not give 1945 as the year of issue for those. The most exact date documented is February of '46 per 45worlds. Crayton was possibly with Turner Willis in 1946 as well for 'Re-enlistment Blues'. 78discogpraphy has Crayton's first name issues recorded on December 2, 1948, which would have been for Modern Records: 'Blues After Hours' and 'I'm Still in Love with You'. Crayton performed and recorded throughout much of the States until his death on June 25 at home base in Los Angeles in 1985. Among highlights in his latter career were appearances on four Big Joe Turner albums from 1975 to 1978: 'Everyday I Have the Blues', 'Nobody In Mind', 'In the Evening' and 'Have No Fear Joe Turner Is Here'. His recording of 'Stormy Monday' in '74 with Turner didn't show up until 1991 on the album 'Stormy Monday'. More Pee Wee Crayton in Rock n Roll 4.

Pee Wee Crayton   1946

   Seventh Street Boogie

      With Ivory Joe Hunter

     Thought Crayton's first recording issued

Pee Wee Crayton   1949

   Blues After Hours

   I'm Still In Love With You

Pee Wee Crayton   1950

   Change Your Way of Loving

Pee Wee Crayton   1951


   When It Rains It Pours

Pee Wee Crayton   1954

   Every Dog Has a Day

Pee Wee Crayton   1956

   My Baby's On the Line

   The Telephone Is Ringing

Pee Wee Crayton   1983

   The Things I Used to Do

      Live performance


Birth of the Blues: Pee Wee Crayton

Pee Wee Crayton

Source: Beadologie

Birth of the Blues: Papa John Creach

Papa John Creach

Source: Past Blues

Papa John Creach (John Henry Creach) was born in 1917 in Beaver Falls, PA, he moved with his family to Chicago in 1935 where he began to perform in cabarets. He purchased an electric violin in 1943, then moved to Los Angeles in '45 to work in clubs there. Creach's earliest determinable vinyl was in 1946 with Helen Andrews on 'Black World Blues' and 'Cotton and Corn Blues'. Creach had studied classical violin for years, but being black put him to a disadvantage in that genre at that time so he sought his living as a jazz musician. He began showing up in films in 'Cry Danger' per 1950 with Teddy Rudolph's Three Bits of Rhythm. In 1951 Creach issued what are thought his first record issues on Dootone: 'Danny Boy'/'It's You In My Heart' and 'Indian Love Call'/'Free for the Asking'. 1953 saw the issue of 'Please Be Sure'/'Neither You Nor I Am To Blame' and 'My Little Susie'/'Wedding of Andy and Raggedy Ann'. (Unfortunately none of Creach's earlier recordings are available at YouTube.) Creach was also a studio musician for whom recognition would arrive rather late, that via rock music, he not coming to be featured until Hot Tuna's 'First Pull Up, Then Pull Down' and Jefferson Airplane's 'Bark' in 1971. Creach would then become best known in association with rock. Creach also released his first album, 'Papa John Creach', in '71. (It was the Airplane which started calling him Papa John.) 'Filthy!' followed the next year. Creach released several more albums through the seventies, then ceased until his final in 1992: 'Papa's Blues'. He died of heart failure two years later in 1994, distinguished for his work with Hot Tuna and Jefferson Starship in particular. (Hot Tuna, formed out of Jefferson Airplane, issued its debut album, 'Hot Tuna', in 1970, just barely too late for these histories. Starship's debut LP was 'Dragon Fly' in 1974.)

Papa John Creach   1971

   Earth Mother

      Paul Kantner/Grace Slick LP: 'Sunfighter'

   Papa John Creach

      Album   Side 1

   Papa John Creach

      Album   Side 2

   Pretty As You Feel

      Jefferson Airplane LP: 'Bark'

   Wild Turkey

      Jefferson Airplane LP: 'Bark'

Papa John Creach   1972



Papa John Creach   1974

   Playing My Fiddle for You


   That's for Sure

      With Jefferson Starship

Papa John Creach   1975


Papa John Creach   1988

   Down Home Blues

      Filmed with Hot Tuna

    Live In San Diego

      Filmed live

Papa John Creach   1992

   Papa's Blues




Born in 1921 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Lowell Fulson began to play professionally in 1939 or 1940 with Texas Alexander. Part Choctaw Cherokee, Fulson was drafted in 1943. Upon release in 1945 he briefly returned to Oklahoma before heading to Oakland, California where he made his first recordings in 1946. His early band was staffed at one time or another with both pianist Ray Charles Charles and sax player Stanley Turrentine. Among the most serious contenders to T-Bone Walker's prestige as a blues guitarist, Fulson would record and tour for the next four decades. Fulson's last recording was 'Everyday I Have the Blues', a duet with Jimmy Rogers in 1999 (on the Jimmy Rogers album, 'Blues Blues Blues'), the year of his death as well.

Lowell Fulson   1946

   San Francisco Blues

Lowell Fulson   1948

   Three O'Clock Blues

Lowell Fulson   1949

   Every Day I Have the Blues

Lowell Fulson   1950

   Cold Hearted Woman

Lowell Fulson   1952

   Let's Live Right

Lowell Fulson   1954

   Reconsider It

Lowell Fulson   1955

   Loving You (Is All I Crave)

Lowell Fulson   1960

   Blue Shadows

Lowell Fulson   1963

   You're Gonna Miss Me

Lowell Fulson   1964

   Reconsider Baby

      Piano: Lloyd Glenn

Lowell Fulson   1967

   I'm a Drifter


Lowell Fulson   1969

   Why Don't We Do It In the Road

Lowell Fulson   1993

   Little by Little

      With BB King


Birth of the Blues: Lowell Fulson

Lowell Fulson

Source: Music Me

Birth of the Blues: Lightning Hopkins

Lightnin' Hopkins

Source: Eran Sabag

Guitarist Lightning Hopkins, born in Houston in 1912, made his first recording, 'Katie Mae', in 1946. When Hopkins was age eight he met Blind Lemon Jefferson at a church picnic, which sealed his destiny. He was further educated in the blues by distant cousin, Alger Texas Alexander. It was 1946 when Hopkins recognized that Houston wasn't the place for him to pursue a career in the blues. So he left for Los Angeles and cut his first records with pianist Wilson Smith for Aladdin Records. With those under his belt, Hopkins returned to Houston to greater welcome. Hopkins recorded at least 800 tracks during his career, which included an appearance at Carnegie Hall in 1960 and world tours in the sixties and seventies. Hopkins died of cancer January 30, 1982.

Lightnin' Hopkins   1946

   Katie Mae

   Bald Headed Woman

Lightnin' Hopkins   1947

   Short Haired Woman

Lightnin' Hopkins   1949

   Baby Please Don't Go

Lightnin' Hopkins   1966

   Rock Me Baby

      Live in concert


  Born James Lane in 1924 in Mississippi, Jimmy Rogers played harmonica as a child, adding guitar as a teenager. His first recordings occurred in 1946 as both a mouth harp player and vocalist. ('Round About Boogie', 'Little Store Blues', 'Ludella', 'You Don't Have to Go', 'I'm In Love With a Woman', 'That's Alright' and 'I'm In Love'.) Those recordings for Harlem Records were mislabled, credited to Memphis Slim and His Houserockers. Howsoever, none are found at YouTube. Rogers next recorded with Muddy Waters in 1950, before recording in his own name the same year. Rogers pretty much retired from the music industry in the sixties, though he worked briefly with Howlin' Wolf. He worked as a cab driver and owned a clothing store that burned down in the riots following the assassination of Martin Luther King (1968). Rogers began recording again in 1972, producing the album, 'Gold Tailed Bird', and was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1995. He died in Chicago in 1997 of colon cancer.

Jimmy Rogers   1950

   Last Time I Fool Around With You

      With Muddy Waters

   That's Alright

   Today Today Blues

   Where's My Woman Been

      With Muddy Waters

Jimmy Rogers   1953

   Act Like You Love Me

Jimmy Rogers   1973

   Gold Tailed Bird

      Album: 'Gold Tailed Bird'

Jimmy Rogers   1979

   Crazy Women Blues

      With Left Hand Frank

   Dirty Dozens

      With Left Hand Frank

   Oh Baby

      With Left Hand Frank

Jimmy Rogers   1992

   Big Boss Man

Jimmy Rogers   1999

   Shoot You Right Down

     Album: 'Blues Blues Blues'

      With Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant


      Album: 'Blues Blues Blues'   With Taj Mahal

   Bright Lights, Big City

      Album: 'Blues Blues Blues'


Birth of the Blues: Jimmy Rogers

Jimmy Rogers

Photo: Michael Amsler

Source: Bohemian

  Clarence Gatemouth Brown was born in 1924 in Vinton, Louisiana. He picked up "Gatemouth" from a high school teacher who compared his voice to to gate. Brown began his career as a drummer in San Antonio. His name began to spread upon filling in for an ill T-Bone Walker in 1947 at a Houston nightclub, Walker no easy talent to substitute. That same year in August he cut his first tracks for Aladdin: 'Gatemouth Boogie'/'After Sunset' and 'Guitar In My Hand'/'Without Me Baby'. Two years later he helped launch Peacock records, recording six songs for three plates, among them: 'Mary Is Fine'/'My Time Is Expensive'. During the sixties Brown worked in Nashville, pursuing country music. His first of twelve tours to Europe was in 1971. He also toured East Africa as a U.S. State Department ambassador. Moving to New Orleans in the latter seventies, he then toured the Soviet Union in 1979. Tours to Russia had been a matter for the U.S. State Department up to that time. That tour, eight weeks shy of a year, was arranged by Brown's manager, Jim Halsey, and was the first concerning which a private party from the U.S. dealt directly with Soviet officials. Brown was elected into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1999. He toured internationally during his last years, his final record release in 2004: 'Timeless'. Brown's home was destroyed in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina, he having evacuated to Orange, Texas. He there died in September 2005, only for flooding from Hurricane Ike to unearth his casket in 2008 (since refurbished with a headstone).

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1947

  Gatemouth Boogie

  Guitar In My Hand

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1949

   Mary Is Fine

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1950

   Boogie Rambler

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1951

   I Live My Life

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1953

   Boogie Uproar

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1954

   Baby Take It Easy

  Midnight Hour

   Okie Dokie Stomp

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1959

   Depression Blues

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1966

   Okie Dokie Stomp

     Filmed live

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1972

   The Blues Ain't Nothing


Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1983

   Dollar Got the Blues

     Filmed live

  Worried Life Blues

     Filmed live with Canned Heat

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   1984


     Filmed live

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   2000


     Filmed live

Clarence Gatemouth Brown   2004

   Live at Montreaux

     Filmed concert


Birth of the Blues: Clarence Gatemouth Brown

Clarence Gatemouth Brown

Photo: Andrew Lepley

Source: Powers 2

Birth of the Blues: John Lee Hooker

John Lee Hooker

Photo: Brian Smith

Source: VeV

Born in 1917 in Mississippi, guitarist, John Lee Hooker, first recorded in 1948, the year before Lead Belly died (1949). Hooker learned guitar from his stepfather, then ran away from home at age fifteen. The thirties found Hooker playing at the New Daisy Theatre on Beale Street in Memphis. During World War II Hooker drifted from city to city as a factory worker, eventually ending up in 1948 with Ford Motor Company in Detroit. He first recorded with Modern Records that year (: 'Boogie Chillen''), after which he enjoyed among the most illustrious careers in blues, became a major influence on rock music and released more than 100 albums. Though he lived his later years largely in Long Beach, Hooker owned several homes in California and opened his own nightclub in San Francisco in 1997: John Lee Hooker's Boom Boom Room. Hooker's last recording was in 2001 with Italian singer, Zucchero, in 2001: 'Ali D'Oro' (released by Zucchero in 2005 on the album, 'Zucchero & Co.). Hooker died in his sleep of natural causes June 21, 2001. More John Lee Hooker in A Birth of Folk Music under Ry Cooder.

John Lee Hooker   1948  

   Boogie Chillen

   Crawlin' King Snake

   Goin' Down Highway 51

   Wednesday Evening Blues

John Lee Hooker   1951

   Catfish Blues

   I'm In the Mood

   Reach My Goal

   Tease Me Baby

John Lee Hooker   1952

   Rock Me Mama

   Women and Money

John Lee Hooker   1963

   This Is Hip

John Lee Hooker   1971

   The Feelin' Is Gone

      LP: 'Hooker 'N Heat'

     With Canned Heat

   Messin' With the Hook

      LP: 'Hooker 'N Heat'

     With Canned Heat

   Whiskey and Wimmen

      LP: 'Hooker 'N Heat'

     With Canned Heat

John Lee Hooker   1980

   This Is Hip

      With Ry Cooder

John Lee Hooker   2001

   Boogie Chillun

   Ali D'Oro

      With Zucchero



Born in Marianna, Arkansas, in 1917, guitarist, Floyd Jones, was a Delta blues musician before becoming involved with Chicago blues. He first released 'Stockyard Blues' with Snooky Pryor in 1948. Jones performed in Chicago the remainder of his life, though he toured with Lionel Hampton's orchestra to Europe in 1961 and Japan in 1963. He died in Chicago on December 19, 1989.

Floyd Jones   1948

   Stockyard Blues

Floyd Jones   1952

   Dark Road

      With Sunnyland Slim

Floyd Jones   1953

   On the Road Again

Floyd Jones   1970

   Stockyard Blues

      Live performance


Birth of the Blues: Floyd Jones

Floyd Jones

Source: Early Blues

Birth of the Blues: Moody Jones

Moody Jones


Guitarist Moody Jones, brother of Floyd Jones, released his first recording, with Snooky Pryor, in 1948. Gospel oriented, Moody Jones quit music in 1955 to become a pastor.

Moody Jones   1948

   Telephone Blues

      With Snooky Pryor


  Born in New Orleans in 1917, Frankie Lee Sims released his first recordings in 1948, made in Dallas. Sims was twelve when he began to play guitar, then ran away from home to become a musician. The latter thirties found him a teacher in Palestine, Texas, playing local gigs on weekends. Sims enlisted as a Marine when the United States entered World War II in 1941. Upon release he made Dallas his home, where he eventually died of pneumonia in 1970, only 53 years of age.

Frankie Lee Sims   1948

   Cross Country Blues

   Single Man Blues

Frankie Lee Sims   1953

   Lucy Mae Blues

Frankie Lee Sims   1954

   Cryin' Won't Help You

Frankie Lee Sims   1957

   Walking With Frankie

Frankie Lee Sims   1958

   I Warned You Baby

   My Talk Didn't Do Any Good

   She Likes to Boogie Real Low


Birth of the Blues: Frankie Lee Jones

Frankie Lee Sims

Photo: Chris Strachwitz

Source: Bman's Blues Report

Birth of the Blues: Eddie Burns

Eddie Burns

Source: Grognards

Born in Belzoni, Mississippi in 1928, Eddie "Guitar" Burns made his way to Detroit in 1948. He began his career playing harmonica rather than guitar. His first recordings occurred in 1949, Burns on mouth harp and John Smith on guitar: 'Notoriety Woman' (released on Palda Records as by the Swing Brothers). It was released the same year by Holiday Records as 'Bad Woman Blues' under the pseudonym, Slim Pickens. Both were backed with 'Papa's Boogie' (unfound). Briefly afterward that same year Burns began playing harmonica for John Lee Hooker (one of their recordings of such below). Soon after he would start playing guitar for Hooker as well. Though Burns had to supplement his income as a mechanic he fared well enough to call for a tour of Europe on 1972, the same year his debut album, 'Bottle Up & Go' appeared, recorded in London. Burn's much younger brother, Jimmy Burns, was a soul musician who later turned to blues. (He plays guitar on Eddie's 2002 release of 'Snake Eyes'.) Burn's last recordings are of his album, 'Second Degree Burns', released in 2005. Burns died of heart failure December 2012.

Eddie Burns   1949

   Bad Woman Blues [Notoriety Woman]

      Harmonica with John T. Smith

   Burnin' Hell

      Harmonica with John Lee Hooker

Eddie Burns   1951

   Where Did You Stay Last Night

   Hello Miss Jessie Lee

Eddie Burns   1953

   She Keeps Me Guessing

Eddie Burns   1954

   Bisquit Baking Mama

Eddie Burns   1957

   Dont'cha Leave Me Baby

   Treat Me Like I Treat You

Eddie Burns   1961

   Orange Driver

Eddie Burns   1962

   (Don't Be) Messing with My Bread

Eddie Burns   1975

   Do It If You Wanna

Eddie Burns   1987

   The Blues Is All Right

      With the BJ Hegens Bluesband

Eddie Burns   1988

   When I Lost My Baby

      With the BJ Hegens Bluesband



Birth of the Blues: BB King

BB King

Source: Daisy America

Born on a cotton plantation in Mississippi in 1925, BB King (Riley B. King) released his first recording, 'Miss Martha King', in 1949. Jazz had its Louis Armstrong. Blues had its BB King, who fairly institutionalized electric guitar as the major instrument of the blues. King began playing professionally in 1943 with the the Famous St. John's Quartet. 1946 finds him playing with Bukka White in Memphis, 1948 with Sonny Boy Williamson II in West Memphis, Arkansas. During that period he picked up the nickname "Beale Street Blues Boy", shortened to "Blues Boy", edited again to simply "BB". After his first recording, which didn't sell well, King put together his own band and toured the States. The rest is an illustrious career, not only as King of the Blues, but one of the finest guitarists of 20th century, for six decades running. King wasn't related to either Albert King, Earl King or Freddie King.

BB King   1949  

   Miss Martha King

  She's Dynamite

BB King   1953  

   Highway Bound

BB King   1957  

   Early In the Morning

BB King   1970

   Nobody Loves Me But My Mother

BB King   1971  

   Sweet Thing

BB King   1987

   Why I Sing the Blues

      Live with Albert King, Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan

BB King   1995

   Catfish Blues (Fishin' After Me)


  Born in 1932 in Alabama, Louisiana Red grew up being relayed from relative to relative. His mother had died of pneumonia shortly after his birth and his father his father had been murdered by the Klan (KKK) in 1937. He first recorded in 1949 as Rocky Fuller, then joined the Army, for a pleasant visit to Korea in 1951. Upon discharge Red continued to record as Rocky Fuller, then later joined John Lee Hooker's band for a couple of years. His first album was released in 1963, 'Lowdown Back Porch Blues', followed the same year by 'Seventh Son'. Red enjoyed a very active career in the midst of which he moved to Hanover, Germany in 1981, where he died February 25, 2012.

Louisiana Red   1949

   Come On Baby, Now

      As Rocky Fuller

Louisiana Red   1953

   Gonna Play My Guitar

      As Rocky Fuller

Louisiana Red   1960

   I Done Woke Up

Louisiana Red   1964

   I'm Too Poor to Die

Louisiana Red   1975

   Sweet Blood Call

Louisiana Red   1977

   Old Gray Whistle Test

Louisiana Red   1982

   Nothing But a Gypsy Man

Louisiana Red   1983

   No Future

Louisiana Red   1999


Louisiana Red   2007

   Cotton Pickin' Blues


Birth of the Blues: Louisiana Red

Louisiana Red

Source: All Music

Birth of the Blues: Howling Wolf

Howlin' Wolf

Source: 10 Mania

Born in Mississippi in 1910 as Chester Arthur Burnett, Howling Wolf, guitar and harmonica, first recorded in 1951: 'Moanin' At Midnight' and 'How Many More Years'. Wolf got his name from via his grandfather who told him frightening stories about wolves and boys who misbehaved. It was 1930 when he met Charlie Patton who taught him guitar. Wolf then toured the South until he was drafted in 1941. Discharged in 1943, Wolf headed for West Memphis, Arkansas, where he resumed his career, forming his own band in 1948. In 1968 he traveled to Europe as a member of the American Folk Blues Festival tour. Unlike many an other blues musician, continuously destitute, Wolf had a head for finance, early offering members of his band health insurance, unemployment insurance and Social Security contributions. Wolf died of kidney disease January 10, 1976. More great Howlin' Wolf to be found at A Birth of Rock and Roll 2.

Howlin' Wolf   1951

   How Many More Years

   Moanin' At the Moon

Howlin' Wolf   1954

   Forty Four

Howlin' Wolf   1956

   Smokestack Lightning

Howlin' Wolf   1961

   Down in the Bottom

Howlin' Wolf   1964

   I'll Be Back Someday

      Live performance

   Shake For Me

      Live performance

Howlin' Wolf   1965

   Ooh Baby

Howlin' Wolf   1966

   Dust My Broom

Howlin' Wolf   1967


Howlin' Wolf   1968




Birth of the Blues: Elmore James

Elmore James

Photo: Michael Ochs Archive

Source: Black & Blue

Born in Mississippi in 1918, Elmore James, another Delta blues guitarist, released his first recording, 'Dust My Broom', in 1951. James joined the Navy during World War II. He learned what war against the Japanese was like while invading Guam. Upon discharge he returned to Mississippi where he first recorded in 1951 with Sonny Boy Williamson II (tracks unknown as of this writing), after which he released 'Dust My Broom' in his own name. A highly admired musician, John Mayall's 'Mr. James' on his 1968 album, 'Looking Back' was about James. Among who covered his composition, 'The Sky Is Crying', were Stevie Ray Vaughan, Albert King, George Thorogood and Eric Clapton. James' career was cut short by heart attack in 1963, only 45 years of age, just prior to a planned tour of Europe.

Elmore James   1951

   Dust My Broom

      Composition: Robert Johnson

Elmore James   1955

   Blues Before Sunrise

Elmore James   1957

   Coming Home

   Cry For Me

   It Hurts Me Too

Elmore James   1960

   The Sky Is Crying

   The Sun Is Shining

Elmore James   1961

   Done Somebody Wrong

   Shake Your Money Maker

Elmore James   1963



  Born in Jamaica in 1923 of a mother only eleven years old (taught to believe his mother was his sister), Eddie Kirkland was raised in Alabama until 1935, when he stowed away in a tent truck of the Sugar Girls Medicine Show. Thus began his music career, singing in the chorus of a traveling tent show at age twelve. Kirkland joined the Army in the war against the Axis, after which he acquired employment at a Ford plant in Detroit in 1949 where John Lee Hooker was working as well. Kirkland began backing Hooker at gigs and is thought to have made his first recordings with Hooker in the Besman sessions of 1951, a good discography of those by Claus Rohnisch at John Lee Hooker, placing Kirkland's first session on April 2 for titles such as 'Women In My Life' (released on Modern 829) and 'I'm Going Away'. Kirkland and Hooker would record numerously to 1962. His first recordings in his own right, backed by Hooker, occurred in Detroit in 1952 under the name Little Eddie Kirkland: 'It's Time' and 'That's All Right'. Kirkland died on February 27, 2011, when he was struck by a Greyhound bus upon making a bad u-turn.

Eddie Kirkland   1951

   Women In My Life

      With John Lee Hooker

Eddie Kirkland   1952

   It's Time for Lovin' to Be Done

      With John Lee Hooker

   That's All Right

      With John Lee Hooker

Eddie Kirkland   1953

   Mistreated Woman

   No Shoes

Eddie Kirkland   1959

   I Must've Done Something Wrong

Eddie Kirkland   1961

   Train Done Gone

Eddie Kirkland   1964

   Chill Me Baby

   Have Mercy On Me

Eddie Kirkland   1995

   Our Love So Beautiful

Eddie Kirkland   2006

   Good, Good Day

      Album: 'Booty Blues'

Eddie Kirkland   2010

   Rock Me Baby

      With the Wentus Blues Band


Birth of the Blues: Eddie Kirkland

Eddie Kirkland

Photo: Kartik Pashupati

Source: India Music Week

Birth of the Blues: Earl Hooker

Earl Hooker

Source: The Music's Over

Born in Mississippi in 1929, slide guitarist Earl Hooker, cousin of John Lee Hooker, was a childhood friend of Bo Diddley with whom he busked on the streets of Chicago. Several years later in 1948 he began touring the South with Robert Nighthawk (who had taught him slide), after which he made his first recordings in 1952. Hooker is distinguished in some of the tracks below by his use of the wah-wah pedal, which he began to use in 1968. Unfortunately, Hooker died at the early age of 41 in 1970, in Chicago, of tuberculosis.

Earl Hooker   1952

   Sweet Black Angel

Earl Hooker   1953

   Blue Guitar

   Earl's Boogie Woogie

   Guitar Rag


Earl Hooker   1960

   Blues In D Natural

Earl Hooker   1961

   Apache War Dance

Earl Hooker   1969

   The Hook


   I Don't Care When You Go

      With John Lee Hooker

   Off the Hook

   Two Bugs and a Roach

   Wah Wah Blues

   Messin' Around With the Blues

Earl Hooker   1970

   Sweet Home Chicago

      Recorded 1969



'Homesick' and 'Lonesome Ole Train' were Homesick James Williamson's first recordings in 1952. Unfortunately they are unfound for this history. James was a (slide) guitarist born in Somerville, Tennessee. He based himself in Chicago in the thirties. From 1955 to 1963 he played bass for Elmore James. His first album, 'Blues On the South Side', was released in 1964. James died December 13, 2006.

Homesick James   1953

   The Woman I Love

Homesick James   1962


   Set a Date

Homesick James   1964

   Homesick's Shuffle

Homesick James   1975

   Dust My Broom

   Lonesome Train

Homesick James   1980

   Sad & Lonesome

      With Snooky Pryor

Homesick James   1993

   Live in Chicago

      With Yank Rachell


Birth of the Blues: Homesick James

Homesick James

Source: Donkey Show


Birth of the Blues: Albert King

Albert King

Source: Blues y Palabra

Born in Indianola, Mississippi, in 1923, guitarist Albert King (older brother of Freddie King but not related to either BB King or Earl King) began his professional career in 1950 with the Groove Boys. Soon afterward he played drums for Jimmy Reed. King went to Chicago in 1953, where he released his first single, 'Be On Your Merry Way' the same year with 'Bad Luck Blues' (unfound) flip side. In 1961 King moved to Memphis where he released his first album in 1962, 'The Big Blues' (followed by 'Born Under a Bad Sign' in '67). Though Albert was overshadowed by BB King he was among those major names in blues that one mentions alongside him. His last studio release was the album, 'I'm In a Phone Booth, Baby', issued in 1984. King died December 21, 1992. A DVD of his last European tour was released in 2001, titled 'Godfather of the Blues'.

Albert King   1953

   Be On Your Merry Way

Albert King   1960

   Need You By My Side

   The Time Has Come

Albert King   1967

   Born Under a Bad Sign


Albert King   1968

   As the Years Go Passing By

      Live performance

Albert King   1968

   Blues Power

      Live performance

Albert King   1970

   Drowning On Dry Land

   Oh, Pretty Woman

Albert King   1971

   Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven



Albert King   1978

   Feel Like Breakin' Up Somebody's Home

Albert King   1981

   Born Under a Bad Sign

      Live performance

Albert King   1983

   Born Under a Bad Sign/Stormy Monday

      Live with Stevie Ray Vaughan

    Texas Flood/Pride & Joy

      Live with Stevie Ray Vaughan

    Match Box Blues/Don't Lie to Me

      Live with Stevie Ray Vaughan

Albert King   1984

   Phone Booth

      Album: 'I'm Standing In a Phone Booth, Baby'

Albert King   1992

   Red House



Birth of the Blues: Earl King

Earl King

Photo: Rick Olivier

Source: Black Kudos


Born Earl Silas Johnson IV in 1934 in New Orleans, Earl King began his recording career in 1953 with 'Have You Gone Crazy' b/w 'Begging At Your Mercy'. Those early tunes and more of Earl King can be found at A Birth of Rock & Roll 1. Earl King wasn't related to either Albert King, BB King or Freddie King. Earl King died of diabetes on April 17, 2003.

Earl King   1954

   A Mother's Love

Earl King   1955

   Those Lonely, Lonely Nights

Earl King   1974

   Live In Chicago

      Piano: Professor Longhair

Earl King   1993

   It All Went Down the Drain

      Live performance



Birth of the Blues: Jimmy Reed

Jimmy Reed

Source: Mojo Repair Shop

Born on a plantation in Mississippi in 1925, guitarist and harmonica player Jimmy Reed released his first single, 'High and Lonesome' b/w 'Roll and Rhumba', in 1953. Reed was taught harmonica and guitar by bluesman Eddie Taylor. He began his career busking in Mississippi, then Chicago, before being drafted into the Army in 1943. Upon discharge he returned to Mississippi, then made his way to Gary, Indiana, to work in a meat packing plant while playing gigs with the Gary Kings. Reed's first couple of recordings didn't take him far. But his third record release, 'You Don't Have to Go' b/w 'Boogie In the Dark', placed No. 5 on Billboard's R&B chart, after which Reed's career was made. Unfortunately alcohol and epilepsy interfered with Reed's skills. It is accounted a wonder that Reed was such a successful musician given he was often so drunk at performances and recording sessions that he amazed only by being able to stand up. He eventually quit drinking, but died relatively young (age fifty) of respiratory failure in 1976.

Jimmy Reed   1953

   High and Lonesome

   Roll and Rhumba

Jimmy Reed   1954

   Boogie In the Dark

      With Eddie Taylor

   You Don't Have To Go

      With Eddie Taylor

Jimmy Reed   1961

   Big Boss Man

   Bright Lights, Big City

Jimmy Reed   1962

   Aw Shucks, Hush Your Mouth

   Good Lover



Birth of the Blues: Johnny Shines

Johnny Shines

Source: Santa Barbara Blues

Born in Memphis in 1915, guitarist Johnny Shines first toured the South before becoming involved with Chicago blues. In 1935 he began touring the States and Canada with Robert Johnson until 1937. Shines continued touring the South until settling in Chicago in 1941, where he worked in construction while playing gigs. He first began recording in 1942, but couldn't, for several years, find a label that would release his sound to the public. When he did finally make his first release in 1953, with Big Walter Horton, the sales were so bad that he quit music and stuck with construction. He was discovered again in a Chicago blues bar, taking photographs, which led to recording with Horton again in 1966. He moved to Holt, Alabama, in 1969, from where he toured internationally. Shines died in Alabama in 1992.

Johnny Shines   1953

   Brutal Hearted Woman

      With Walter Horton

Johnny Shines   1966

   Black Spider Blues

      With Walter Horton

   Layin' Down My Shoes and Clothes

      With Walter Horton


  Born in Benoit, Mississippi in 1923, it was Eddie Taylor who taught Jimmy Reed guitar, and it is with Jimmy Reed that Taylor first recorded in 1953 with Vee Jay Records. Two years later Vee Jay gave Taylor a shot at recording in his own right, his first release 'Bad Boy'. Taylor worked mostly as an accompanist, backing big names like John Lee Hooker and Little Walter Horton. He died on Christmas Day in Chicago in 1985.

Eddie Taylor   1953

   Rockin' With Reed

      With Jimmy Reed

Eddie Taylor   1955

   Bad Boy

      With Jimmy Reed

   Big Town Playboy

      With Jimmy Reed

   Ride Em On Down

      With Jimmy Reed

Eddie Taylor   1957

   I'm Gonna Love You

Eddie Taylor   1966

   Peach Tree Blues

Eddie Taylor   1972

   Stop Breaking Down

      Album: 'I Feel So Bad'

   Stroll Out West (I Feel So Bad)

      Album: 'I Feel So Bad'

Eddie Taylor   1974

   Seems Like a Million Years

      Album: 'Ready For Eddy'

Eddie Taylor   1980

   My Heart Is Bleeding

Eddie Taylor   1985

   Bad Boy

      Live performance

Eddie Taylor   1998

   Three O'clock In The Morning


Birth of the Blues: Eddie Taylor

Eddie Taylor

Source: Discogs

Birth of the Blues: Lightnin' Slim

Lightnin' Slim

Source: Hidden Charms

Born in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1913, Lightnin' Slim is among the swamp blues musicians who recorded with Excello Records in Baton Rouge. Slim's first record release was in 1954: 'Bad Luck Blues'. He recorded with Excello for another twelve years. But the latter sixties found him in Pontiac, Michigan, working at a foundry. He began to revive his career in 1971 upon reuniting with Lazy Lester with the encouragement of prior manager, Fred Reif. He also toured Europe (United Kingdom and Switzerland) into 1973. But Slim would die shortly thereafter in 1974.

Lightnin' Slim   1954

   Bad Luck Blues

   It's Mighty Crazy

Lightnin' Slim   1955

   Lightnin's Blues

Lightnin' Slim   1957

   I Ain't Got No Money

   I'm Grown

Lightnin' Slim   1959

   Rooster Blues

   Sweet Little Woman

Lightnin' Slim   1964

   Wintertime Blues



Born in Greenwood, Mississippi in 1931, Hubert Sumlin was invited to play second guitar (rhythm - next to Jody Williams on lead in the 1954 example below) in Howlin' Wolf's band in 1954. The tracks on which he first records with the band that year are 'No Place to Go', 'You Gonna Wreck My Life', 'Neighbors', 'I'm the Wolf', 'Rockin Daddy', 'Evil', 'I'll Be Around' and 'Forty Four'. Sumlin was the mainstay lead guitarist in Wolf's band until Wolf's death in 1976, when Sumlin continued with the band, renamed the Wolf Pack, for several years (a couple tracks on which he is featured below). Sumlin made his first solo recordings in East Berlin in 1964. He remained a very highly regarded guitarist until his death of heart failure in 2011.

Hubert Sumlin   1954

   Evil Is Going On

      With Howlin' Wolf

Hubert Sumlin   1956

   Smokestack Lightning

      With Howlin' Wolf

Hubert Sumlin   1960

   Do the Do

      With Howlin' Wolf

   Mama's Baby

      With Howlin' Wolf

Hubert Sumlin   1964

   I Love

Hubert Sumlin   2004

   Killing Floor

      Live with Eric Clapton, Jimmy Vaughan, Robert Cray


Birth of the Blues: Hubert Sumlin

Hubert Sumlin

Photo: Andrew Lepley

Source: Live Blues

Birth of the Blues: Jody Williams

Jody Williams

Born in Mobile, Alabama, in 1935, Jody Williams was largely raised in Chicago. He knew and busked with Bo Diddley, his mentor, as a teenager, then played gigs with such as Elmore James and Memphis Minnie. After touring with pianist Charles Brown, Williams was hired by Chess Records as a session player, whence he met Howlin' Wolf and replaced guitarist Lee Cooper. Among the songs he recorded with Wolf during that period is 'Evil Is Going On' below. (Williams also records 'Baby How Long', 'I'll Be Around' and 'Forty Four' with Howlin' Wolf in 1954.) Another example of his session work the same year is 'It Must Have Been The Devil' with Otis Spann (BB King in the band as well), below. Williams' first solo recording occurred in 1955, using the moniker, Little Papa Joe. Williams became disgusted with the music business in the sixties and quit music altogether. He stuck his guitar under his bed, studied electronics and got a job with Xerox that he held until retirement. He avoided nightclubs so as to not be tempted by associates to pick up his guitar again. Not until 1994 did Williams consider playing music again, upon his wife's suggestion. Then it took another five or six years to get him to actually do so, returning to professional gigs in 2000, then recording the album, 'Return Of A Legend', for its release in 2002. Williams issued his next album, 'You Left Me In The Dark', in 2004.

Jody Williams   1954

   Evil Is Going On

      With Howlin' Wolf

   It Must Have Been The Devil

      With Otis Spann

Jody Williams   1955

   Lookin' For My Baby

      As Little Papa Joe

Jody Williams   1956

   Easy Lovin'

   Who Do You Love?/I'm Bad

Jody Williams   1957

   Lucky You

   You May

Jody Williams   1963


   Moaning For Molasses

Jody Williams   1966

   Lonely Without You

Jody Williams   2000

   Time For a Change

      Live performance

Jody Williams   2010

   Lucky Lou

      Live performance


  Born in Welsh, Louisiana, in 1937, Phillip Walker was discovered by Clifton Chenier in Texas, with whom he made his first recordings in 1955. His first release in his own name was in 1959 upon moving to California: 'Hello My Darling'. He last recorded in 2007, grooving the album, 'Going Back Home'. Walker died in 2010 of heart failure.

Phillip Walker   1955

   At-Tete Fee

      With Clifton Chenier

   Boppin' the Rock

      With Clifton Chenier

   The Things I Did For You

      With Clifton Chenier

   Think It Over

      With Clifton Chenier

Phillip Walker   1959

   Hello My Darling

   I Want You For Myself

Phillip Walker   1973

   Hello Central

Phillip Walker   1979

   Hello My Darling

Phillip Walker   1984

   Port Arthur Blues

Phillip Walker   1989

   Crying About My Baby

      Piano Lou Matthews   Vocal: Percy Mayfield

   River's Invitation

      Piano Lou Matthews   Vocal: Percy Mayfield

Phillip Walker   1994

   Big Blues From Texas

      Album: 'Big Blues From Texas'   With Otis Grand


      Album: 'Big Blues From Texas'   With Otis Grand

Phillip Walker   1995

   El Paso Blues

   Hello Central

   How Long Must I Wait

      Album: 'Working Girl Blues'

   I'm Tough

   Go Ahead and Take Her

Phillip Walker   1998

   Laughin' and Clownin'

      Album: 'I Got a Sweet Tooth'


Birth of the Blues: Phillip Walker

Phillip Walker


Freddie King (younger brother of Albert King but not related to BB King or Earl King), guitar and harmonica, was born in 1934 in Gilmer, Texas. He followed his family to Chicago in 1950 where he formed his first band, the Every Hour Blues Boys. He first recorded the same year as his older brother (1953) although those cuts have never been released. He afterward spent a few years as a sideman for various musicians (such as Muddy Waters) before his first release, 'Country Boy', with Margaret Whitfield in 1956. His first album, 'Freddy King Sings' was released in 1961. His first overseas tour occurred in 1967. King died at only age 42 on December 6, 1976. Lord's disco has him recording as late as November 15 of that year at the Dallas Convention Center for 'Farther Up the Road'. Most of the tracks below are live performances.

Freddie King   1956

   Country Boy

      With Margaret Whitfield

Freddie King   1966

   Funny Bone

   I Love the Woman

   I'm Torn Down

Freddie King   1971

   Going Down

Freddie King   1972

   Key To the Highway

Freddie King   1973

   Boogie Funk

Freddie King   1974

   Woman Across The River/Ghetto Woman

   Blues Band Shuffle/Sweet Home Chicago

Freddie King   1975

   Sweet Home Chicago

   Woke Up This Morning


Birth of the Blues: Freddie King

Freddie King

Source: Discogs

Birth of the Blues: Lonesome Sundown

Lonesome Sundown

Source: Past Blues

Born Cornelius Green in Louisiana in 1928, Lonesome Sundown was a swamp blues musician who didn't pick up a guitar until age twenty. He was discovered by Clifton Chenier in 1955, with whom Sundown first recorded. (He is second guitar to Phillips Walker's lead in the examples below.) His first recording in his own name came in 1959 for Elko Records: 'Hello My Darling'. Disgust with the music business and the trauma of a divorce convinced Sundown to quit his music career in 1965. He reemerged in 1977 with the release of the album, 'Been Gone Too Long'. Sundown did in 1995 in Louisiana.

Lonesome Sundown   1955

   All Night Long

      Unissued   With Clifton Chenier

   I'm On My Way

      Unissued   With Clifton Chenier

Lonesome Sundown   1956

   Leave My Money Alone

   Lost Without Love

Lonesome Sundown   1957

   Don't Say a Word

   I'm a Mojo Man

   Lonesome Whistler

   My Home Is a Prison

Lonesome Sundown   1959

   I'm Gonna Stick to You Baby

Lonesome Sundown   1963

   I Wanta Know Why

Lonesome Sundown   1977

   I Betcha

   Louisiana Lover Man/Black Cat Bone

   One More Night



Born in Philadelphia, Mississippi, in 1935, Otis Rush released his first single, 'I Can't quit You', in 1956. He'd been playing guitar for only two years, beginning his career after relocation to Chicago in 1948 where he started playing clubs several years later. He issued his first album, 'Mourning In The Morning', in August of 1969. In addition to an admirable list of recordings Rush toured internationally. Rush has been unable to perform since a stroke in 2004. More 1956 Otis Rush in Rock 2.

Otis Rush   1956

   I Can't Quit You

   My Love Will Never Die

Otis Rush   1957

   My Baby (She's a Good 'Un)

   Groaning the Blues

Otis Rush   1958

   All Your Love (I Miss Loving)

   Double Trouble

   It Takes Time

   Keep On Loving Me

Otis Rush   1962


Otis Rush   1966

   All Your Love

   My Own Fault

Otis Rush   1981

   Boll Weevil

   Come On Baby

   Crosscut Saw

   Gambler's Blues

   Right Place, Wrong Time

   Rush Blues

Otis Rush   1986

   Every Day I Have the Blues

Otis Rush   1994

   As the Years Go Passing By

Otis Rush   1996

   All Your Love (I Miss Loving)


Birth of the Blues: Otis Rush

Otis Rush

Source: Chicago Blues Guide

  Born Lee Baker Jr. in Louisiana in 1933, guitarist Lonnie Brooks began his professional career in Port Arthur, Texas, upon Clifton Chenier inviting him to tour with his band. If Brooks recorded with Chenier, more than possible, no documentation of such is found. Be as may, Brooks assumed the moniker, Guitar Junior, and soon released his first solo plate with the Goldband label in 1957: 'I Got It Made (When I Marry Shirley Mae)'/'Family Rules (Angel Child)'. Releases of 'The Crawl'/'Now You Know' and 'Roll Roll Roll'/'Broken Hearted Rollin Tears' were made in 1958. Brooks' first album occurred in 1969: 'Broke an’ Hungry'. His son, Ronnie Brooks, made his debut recording on 'Live From Chicago - Bayou Lightning Strikes' in 1988. Brook's other son, Wayne, began playing in Brooks' band in 1990. Brooks has remained active well into the new millennium. Edits below from year 1993 onward are live performances. Earlier rock by Lonnie Brooks as Guitar Junior in A Birth of Rock & Roll 4.

Lonnie Brooks   1967

   One Sunny Day

Lonnie Brooks   1969

   Broke an' Hungry

Lonnie Brooks   1975

   Sweet Home Chicago

Lonnie Brooks   1979

   You Know What My Body

      Album: 'Bayou Lightning'

   Figure Head

      Album: 'Bayou Lightning'

Lonnie Brooks   1985

   Wound Up Tight

Lonnie Brooks   1993

   You're Usin' Me

Lonnie Brooks   1996

   Rockin' Red Rooster

Lonnie Brooks   2001

   My Money Back

   Watch Dog

Lonnie Brooks   2011

   Sweet Home Chicago


Birth of the Blues: Lonnie Brooks

Lonnie Brooks

Source: Friday Blues Fix

  Born in 1927, Barbara Dane was as much a folk as blues vocalist, singing at demonstrations concerning racial and economic matters upon graduating from high school. She even turned down an offer to tour with Alvino Rey in order to sing at factory gates and union halls. Raised largely in Chicago, she had sat in with bands about town as a teenager. In 1949 she left Chicago for San Francisco where she did the same at nightclubs, getting her first job as a professional musician seven years later (1956) with Turk Murphy at the Tin Angel. That same year she found herself on record with George Lewis and Dick Oxtot's Traditional Jazz Quartet, titles like 'The Glory of Love' and 'Good Morning Blues' recorded on June 30 at Jenny Lind Hall in Oakland. The next year she recorded her debut album, 'Trouble in Mind', in July.    In 1961 she opened her own blues club, Sugar Hill, in the North Beach district. Her latest album was 'What Are You Gonna Do When There Ain't No Jazz?', released in 2002, until she issued 'Throw It Away...' in 2016.

Barbara Dane   1957

   Trouble In Mind

Barbara Dane   1958

   Old Fashioned Love

Barbara Dane   1959

   Why Don't You Do Right

Barbara Dane   1963

   Careless Love

Barbara Dane   1973

   Working Class Woman

Barbara Dane   2008

   Mr. Rich Man

   Wild Women Don't Have The Blues


Birth of the Blues: Barbara Dane

Barbara Dane

Source: Berkeleyside

Birth of the Blues: Buddy Guy

Buddy Guy

Source: Outtown

Born in Louisiana in 1936, George Buddy Guy left for Chicago in 1957, the year he first recorded. He released his first album, 'Hoodoo Man Blues', in 1965. Eric Clapton stated in 1985 that Buddy Guy was the best guitarist alive. Stevie Ray Vaughan has remarked that without Buddy Guy there would be no Stevie Ray Vaughan. Which makes for a brief introduction that pretty much sums it up. Guy had received numerous awards throughout his career and played at the White House in 2012. The greater majority of recordings below are live performances.

Buddy Guy   1957

   The Way You Been Treatin' Me

Buddy Guy   1958

   Sit and Cry (the Blues)

   Try to Quit You Baby

Buddy Guy   1960

   First Time I Met the Blues

Buddy Guy   1968


Buddy Guy   1969

   Mary Had A Little Lamb/My Time After Awhile

      Drums: Buddy Miles

Buddy Guy   1970

   Hoochie Coochie Man

Buddy Guy   1974

   Messin' With The Blues

Buddy Guy   1998

   Damn Right I've Got the Blues

   She Got the Devil In Her

      Album: 'Sweet Tea'

Buddy Guy   2004


   Good Morning Little School Girl

   Stormy Monday

      With Carlos Santana

Buddy Guy   2005

   I Put a Spell On You

      Album: 'Bring 'Em In'   With Carlos Santana



Birth of the Blues: Magic Sam

Magic Sam

Source: Ruth Marie Cumming

Born in Grenada, Mississippi, in 1937, Magic Sam (Samuel Maghett) was a Chicago bluesman, having left Mississippi with his family in 1950. Having formed his first band in 1955, his first recording in 1957, age twenty, was 'All Your Love'. It was at those recordings he took the name, Magic Sam, from his bass player, Mack Thompson. Circa 1960 he was drafted into the Army, served six months in jail for desertion, was discharged. He was soon recording again, and began touring the States, Great Britain and Germany during the early sixties. Magic Sam was rising in stature when died of heart attack at but the age of 32 in 1969. (More Magic Sam in Fifties American Rock.)

Magic Sam   1957

   All Your Love

Magic Sam   1960

   She Belongs to Me

Magic Sam   1964

   I Just Got to Know

Magic Sam   1968

   I Have The Same Old Blues

   Sweet Home Chicago

Magic Sam   1989

   That Ain't It


  Born in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1927, Mighty Joe Young was raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. An amateur boxer in the forties, he began playing guitar in nightclubs in the early fifties. In 1955 he recorded 'Broke Down Hearted and Disgusted' and 'You Been Cheatin' Me' for Jiffy Records, there no documentation, however, of their release. Young first surfaced on vinyl in 1957, backing both Oscar Willis ('Flatfoot Sam' and 'Nervous Boogie') and Oscar Willis as TV Slim and his Heartbreakers ('Flatfoot Sam' and 'Darling Remember'). Young's first name releases were 'She Is Different' and 'I Am Looking for Someone' in 1959 for the Atomic-H label. Together with his own material, Young also backed numerous musicians from Otis Rush to Magic Sam. Young was an integral figure in the Chicago blues scene until his death of pneumonia in 1999.

Mighty Joe Young   1957

   Darling Remember

      With TV Slim (Oscar Willis)

   Flatfoot Sam/Nervous Boogie

      With Oscar Willis

Mighty Joe Young   1959

   She Is Different/I Am Looking for Someone

Mighty Joe Young   1972

   I Walked All Night

      Album: 'Blues with a Touch of Soul'

   Baby Please/Rock Me Baby

   I Have the Same Old Blues


   Lookin' For You

    Things I Used to Do/Why Baby

      Album: 'Blues with a Touch of Soul'

Mighty Joe Young   1974

   As the Years Go Passing By

Mighty Joe Young   1975

   Baby Please

      Filmed live

Mighty Joe Young   1976

   Bluesy Josephine

  Five Long Years

  Sweet Home Chicago

  Take Money

  Teasin' the Blues

Mighty Joe Young   1981

   Turning Point



Birth of the Blues: Mighty Joe Young

Mighty Joe Young

Source: All About Blues

Birth of the Blues: Roy Buchanan

Roy Buchanan

Photo: Michael Ochs Archive/Getty

Source: Media Selection
Born as Leroy a bit off the main roads in Ozark, Arkansas, in 1939, Roy Buchanan had a sharecropper and farm laborer for a father who would take him to Pizley, CA, near Bakersfield, where he would finish out his childhood. He began playing professionally at age fifteen with Johnny Otis. He first surfaced on vinyl in 1958 with guitarist, Dale Hawkins, on 'My Babe' (Willie Dixon) for the Chess label. After a couple years with Dale he hooked up with Ronnie Hawkins (Dale's cousin). In 1961 he released 'Mule Train Stomp', but he would spend the sixties largely as a sideman, especially in Washington DC with Danny Denver. His family got bigger but regional engagements didn't, such that he thought to become a barber in the latter sixties. He and Denver issued 'The Best Of Denver With Roy Buchanan' in 1970 for Wrayco Records, distribution limited sales as gigs. Unable to acquire a record contract (with Polydor in particular), Buchanan formed his own label in 1971 (BIOYA: Blow It Out Your Ass) to release 'Buch and the Snake Stretcher's' the next year, distribution also limited to gigs. Be as may, a 1971 PBS documentary, 'Introducing Roy Buchanan', was just the shovel of coal his engine needed. He signed up with Polydor to issue 'Roy Buchanan' in 1972, followed by 'Second Album' in '73. His career now underway, Buchanan spent its remainder making himself a major name in blues. At one point Eric Clapton called him the best guitarist in the world. Unfortunately Buchanan had the blues in general and liked his beer, he a heavy drinker. One evening in August of 1988 an argument with his wife, Judy, resulted in a domestic violence call to the police. By the time they arrived Buchanan had left the house and was taking a walk to cool off. He was arrested for public intoxication and found in his jail cell later that night, hung to death with his own t-shirt. Many, however, yet find suicide implausible. It isn't known if he was belligerent or not, but marks about his head and other factors (have) led some to speculate if he wasn't actually beaten to death. The cause of his death appears to remain dubitable. His twelfth and final album, 'Hot Wires', had been released in 1987. Buchanan's main axe was an old 1953 Fender Telecaster that he'd named Nancy.

Roy Buchanan   1958

   My Babe

      With Dale Hawkins

Roy Buchanan   1971

   Introducing Roy Buchanan

      PBS documentary

Roy Buchanan   1972

   Buch and the Snake Stretcher's


   John's Blues

      LP: 'Roy Buchanan'

   LP: 'Roy Buchanan'

      LP: 'Roy Buchanan'

Roy Buchanan   1973

   Second Album


Roy Buchanan   1974

   Live Amazing Grace

      Live at Amazing Grace Evanston

         Album released 2009

Roy Buchanan   1975

   Live Stock


Roy Buchanan   1976

   Hey Joe

      Filmed live

   Roy's Bluz

      Filmed live

   A Street Called Straight


   Sweet Dreams

      Filmed live

Roy Buchanan   1977

   I'm a Ram

      Live in Cleveland

   Loading Zone


Roy Buchanan   1978

   You're Not Alone


Roy Buchanan   1981

   Turn to Stone

      Live in Toronto

Roy Buchanan   1985

   Further On Down the Road

      Filmed at Carnegie Hall

   Green Onions

      Filmed in Hamburg

Roy Buchanan   1986

   Live in Denver




Birth of the Blues: Eddie Clearwater

Eddy Clearwater

Photo: Bill Greensmith

Source: Past Blues

Born in Macon, Mississippi, in 1935, Eddy Clearwater (The Chief) left Mississippi for Chicago at age fifteen. But he wouldn't have to work as a dishwasher indefinitely, as by age eighteen he was developing a reputation as Guitar Eddy at the bars where he played. Clearwater was age 23 when he released his first record 'Hill Billy Blues', on the Atomic H label as Clear Waters. All cuts below for year 2009 are live performances.

Eddy Clearwater   1958

   Hill Billy Blues

Eddy Clearwater   1959

   A Minor Cha Cha

Eddy Clearwater   1962

   A Real Good Time

Eddy Clearwater   1976

   Black Night

Eddy Clearwater   1978

   Last Night

Eddy Clearwater   1989

   Blues Hang Out

Eddy Clearwater   1994

   Blues For a Living

Eddy Clearwater   2008

   A Good Leavin' Alone

      Television performance

Eddy Clearwater   2009

   Blue Over You

   Came Up the Hard Way

   Just Want to Make Love to You

   Sweet Little Rock & Roller

   Too Old to Get Married



Birth of the Blues: Albert Collins

Albert Collins

Photo: Charlie Gillett Collection

Source: Paseando por los Suenos

Born in Leona, Texas, in 1932, Albert Collins (Master of the Telecaster) decided to pursue guitar with intent at age twelve. At age eighteen he formed the Rhythm Rockers, but had to support his music career as a ranch hand and truck driver for the next sixteen years. It was with the assistance of the group, Canned Heat, which showed up at a gig Collins was playing in Houston, that Collins was able to give up the day job, ,moving to California to record the album, 'Love Can Be Found Anywhere', released in 1968. From that point onward Bishop enjoyed a lively blues career until his death in 1993 of lung and liver cancer. His last album had been released the same year: 'Live '92/'93'.

Albert Collins   1958

   Collins Shuffle

   The Freeze

Albert Collins   1963


   Sippin' Soda

Albert Collins   1965

   Dyin' Flu

      Recorded 1962

Albert Collins   1968

   Cookin' Catfish


Albert Collins   1969

   Do the Sissy

   Lip Service

   Turnin' On

Albert Collins   1970

   Blues Power

      Live at Fillmore East

Albert Collins   1979

   Cold, Cold Feeling

Albert Collins   1980





   If You Love Me Like You Say

      Live performance

Albert Collins   1981

   Dyin' Flu

Albert Collins   1986

   Cold Snap


Albert Collins   1988


      Live with Stevie Ray Vaughan

Albert Collins   1992

   Honey Hush

      Live performance


  Born Lonnie McIntosh in 1941 in Dearborn County, Indiana, Lonnie Mack began playing guitar at age seven. Quitting school at age thirteen, he began playing roadhouses in the Cincinnati area with a false ID. He was with a band called the Twilighters in 1958 when they recorded 'Pistol Packin' Mama' for the small label, Esta, in Hamilton, Ohio. In 1959 he joined Harley Gabbard and Aubrey Holt in the recording of 'Hey, Baby' and 'Too Late to Cry' for the Sage label. The Twilighters would become his band with which he toured regionally. He began working sessions for the Cincinnati Fraternity label in the early sixties. At a 1963 session with the Charmaines there was yet spare studio time for Mack to record 'Memphis'. Not intending to record anything at all, nor expecting anything to come of it, he'd forgotten all about it and hadn't a clue when he was informed on tour that the single was not only getting air time but had climbed to #4 on Billboard. Nice surprise from out of the blue that day. Even better, it would go gold. The B side of 'Memphis' was 'Down in the Dumps'. Mack followed that with 'Wham!'/'Suzie-Q Baby' and 'Baby, What's Wrong?'/'Where There's a Will' the same year, as well as the first of thirteen albums: 'The Wham of that Memphis Man!'. During the seventies he turned from rock to country as he retired from Los Angeles back to Ohio, feeling ill of the music business among his reasons. In 1977 he surfaced in Japan for a 'Save the Whales' benefit concert. He began playing with Stevie Ray Vaughan in 1979, they becoming good friends. Vaughan would produce and appear on Mack's 'Strike Like Lightning' in 1985. Mack would also visit Europe during his career. He's not toured since 2004, retiring to Tennessee. Having "pursued" his career in a casual manner since turning country, Mack has been one of those musicians with little interest in self-promotion. He just hangs out on his little patch on Earth and happens to play world-class guitar on occasion.

Lonnie Mack   1963

   The Wham Of That Memphis Man!


Lonnie Mack   1985

   Falling Back in Love with You

      Filmed at Carnegie Hall

   Further On Down the Road

      Filmed at Carnegie Hall

         With Roy Buchanan & Albert Collins

   Satisfy Susie

      LP: 'Strike Like Lightning'

Lonnie Mack   1986

   Cincinnati Jail

      LP: 'Second Site'

   Oreo Cookie Blues

      'AM Cleveland' television program

         Date unconfirmed

   Oreo Cookie Blues

      Filmed with Stevie Ray Vaughan


      Filmed with Stevie Ray Vaughan

Lonnie Mack   1988

   Too Rock For Country


Birth of the Blues: Lonnie Mack

Lonnie Mack

Photo: Randy Jennings/Captured Live

Source: B-L-U-E-S

Birth of the Blues: Silas Hogan

Silas Hogan

Photo: Pierre Degeneffe

Source: bdla

Born in 1911 in Louisiana, Silas Hogan was a swamp blues musician who didn't record until he was 48 years old in 1959, with Jimmy Dotson and the Blue Boys. His first name recordings occurred in 1962 for Excello Records. Due to dispute between his manager, Jay Miller, and Excello Records Hogan's recording career ended in 1965, whence he returned to his job at an Exxon oil refinery. Hogan did more recording in the seventies and played such as blues festivals in the South. But he never did manage to become a very popular musician and died in obscurity of heart disease in 1994.

Silas Hogan   1959

   I Wanna Know

      With Jimmy Dotson and the Blue Boys

   Looking For My Baby

      With Jimmy Dotson and the Blue Boys

Silas Hogan   1960

   I Need Your Love

      With Jimmy Dotson and the Blue Boys

Silas Hogan   1962

   You're Too Late Baby

Silas Hogan   1963

   I'm Gonna Quit You Pretty Baby

Silas Hogan   1965

   Trouble At Home



Birth of the Blues: Johnny Winter

Johnny Winter

Source: Seventies Music


Born in 1944, guitar virtuoso Johnny Winter (brother of keyboardist Edgar Winter) is well known for his hard-driving blues-rock fusion. He released his first recording, 'School Day Blues', at age fifteen in 1959. Winter released his first album in in 68, 'The Progressive Blues Experiment', the same year he got his big break, and major it was. Asked to join Mike Bloomfield on stage at Fillmore East in Chicago, Winters performed BB King's 'It's My Own Fault'. Representatives from Columbia Records were in attendance, after which Winters secured $600,000, the highest advance ever paid by a record company to a musician. His first album for Columbia the next year (1969) was titled simply 'Johnny Winter'. (Winter also appeared at Woodstock that year.) 'Second Winter' followed the same year. 'Live Johnny Winter And' followed in 1970, with guitarist Rick Derringer aboard. By this time heroin addiction, begun while creating 'Johnny Winter And', began taking its toll. So Winters sought treatment, then released 'Still Alive and Well' in 1973. 'Saints & Sinners' followed the next year. Winter's two-year recording partnership with Muddy Waters and Blue Sky Records began in 1977. Winters is among the most bootlegged musicians in the industry. It has been estimated that only fifteen percent of his recordings in the wild are commercially legitimate. Winter died in Switzerland while on tour in 2014.The majority of tracks below are live performances.

Johnny Winter   1959

   School Day Blues

Johnny Winter   1963


   Gangster of Love

Johnny Winter   1968

   Progressive Blues Experiment


Johnny Winter   1969

   Johnny Winter


Johnny Winter   1970

   Ain't That a Kindness

     Album: 'Johnny Winter And'

      With Edgar Winter & Rick Derringer

   Be Careful With a Fool

   Jumpin' Jack Flash

      Album: 'Johnny Winter And'

      With Edgar Winter & Rick Derringer

   Mean Town Blues

      Album: 'Johnny Winter And'

      With Edgar Winter & Rick Derringer

Johnny Winter   1971

   Great Balls of Fire/Whole Lotta Shaking Going On

      With Rick Derringer

Johnny Winter   1973

   Still Alive and Well


Johnny Winter   1974

   Bad Luck Situation

Johnny Winter   1976

   Mercy Mercy

      With Edgar Winter

Johnny Winter   1984

   Johnny B. Good

Johnny Winter   1987

   Sound the Bell

Johnny Winter   1991

   Mojo Boogie


  Born in Alabama in 1895, Mance Lipscomb spent his life as a tenant farmer in Texas before he made his first recordings at age 65 in 1960. He had long since been playing guitar at local gatherings (usually what Lipscomb called "Saturday Night Suppers"), sometimes at his own home. Though beginning his professional career at an unusually late age, Lipscomb enjoyed such for more than a decade until his death in 1976, age 81, following a stroke two years earlier.

Mance Lipscomb   1960

   Ain't It Hard

   Motherless Children

   Sugar Babe

Mance Lipscomb   1969

   Alcohol Blues

      Live performance

Mance Lipscomb   1972

      Live at Harvard Dining Hall


Birth of the Blues: Mance Lipscomb

Mance Lipscomb

Source: Library of Congress

  Born in Zachary, Louisiana in 1914, Robert Pete Williams was among the most laboring - as in "I'm not going to make it if I don't get some water" - of blues musicians. As a child he worked in the fields instead of going to school. Williams began playing local gigs as a teenager with a cigar box guitar he had fashioned. Later able to advance to a cheap guitar, he worked in lumber yards in Baton Rouge as he continued playing locally for a couple decades. However, he shot a man to death in a nightclub in 1956 and ended in Angola Prison (Louisiana) with a life sentence. Which is where Williams made his first recordings, beginning in 1959, to be released in 1961. Those recordings were made by ethnomusicologists Dr. Harry Oster and Richard Allen. With assistance from Oster, Williams' had been pardoned and his sentence commuted to servitude parole in 1959. Servitude parole required 80 hours per week of farm labor so there wasn't a lot of time for music. His prison recordings, however, were popular, so when he received a full pardon in 1964, allowing him to leave Louisiana, he headed for the Newport Folk Festival in California, whence he began touring the States and eventually Europe (1966). Williams died in 1980 in Louisiana.

Robert Pete Williams   1961

   Dyin' Soul

   Free Again

   Hay Cutting Song

   I'm Goin' Back With Him When He Comes

   Prisoner's Talking Blues

      Recorded 1959

   Rolling Stone

   Thousand Miles From Nowhere

   When I Lay My Burden Down

   Wife and Farm Blues

   I'm Glad My Mother Teached Me How To Pray

   Freight Train Blues

   High As I Want to Be

   I'm Going Down Slow

   Somebody Help Poor Me

   Old Girl At My Door

   Scrap Iron Blues

   I'm Gonna Go To The River

   So Much Is Happenin' In This Wicked World

   My Mind Wandering Around

   Sad News From Korea

Robert Pete Williams   1970

   Live at Portland State University


Birth of the Blues: Robert Pete Williams

Robert Pete Williams

Source: Discogs

Birth of the Blues: Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton

Source: Paste

Between the periods of BB King and Stevie Ray Vaughan (yet too late for this history) occurred the phenomenon that is Eric Clapton (also called Slow Hand). Alike Ray Vaughan, Clapton mixed the blues with rock in such extraordinary manner that rock music became nothing to sniff at evermore. Born in England, Clapton first recorded in 1963 with the Yardbirds. In 1965 the Yardbirds began to pursue a more commercial sound, prompting Clapton to leave the band and join John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, the better to examine blues guitar. (He can be found playing with the Bluesbreakers under John Mayall in Blues 4 in selections for the years 1965 - 1966.) Clapton joined the rock band, Cream, in 1966, with whom he played until helping to form the band, Blind Faith, in 1969. That same year he accompanied Delaney & Bonnie and Friends, before forming Derek and the Dominos in 1970. Later in Clapton's career he would exceed being only a great rock guitarist and, largely via blues, take his place among the greatest guitarists of the 20th century. His 1992 issue of 'Unplugged' won the 1993 Album of the Year Grammy Award. More Clapton will be found in Rock 6.

Eric Clapton   1963

   Boom Boom

      Original composition: John Lee Hooker

      With the Yardbirds

Eric Clapton   1964

   Got to Hurry

      With the Yardbirds

   I'm a Man

      Original composition: Bo Diddley

      With the Yardbirds

Eric Clapton   1965

   They Call It Stormy Monday

      With the Bluesbreakers

Eric Clapton   1966

   Double Crossing Time

      With the Bluesbreakers

Eric Clapton   1969

   Sleeping In the Ground

      Live with Blind Faith

   Poor Elijah

      With Delaney & Bonnie & Friends

Eric Clapton   1970

   Bell Bottom Blues

      With Derek and the Dominos

   Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out

      With Derek and the Dominos

Eric Clapton   1975

   Further On Up the Road

Eric Clapton   1980

   Double Trouble

      Live performance

Eric Clapton   1982

   Good Night Irene

      Live performance

Eric Clapton   1990

   Before You Accuse Me

      Live with Stevie Ray Vaughan

Eric Clapton   1992

   Hey Hey

      Live performance


      Live performance

Eric Clapton   1996

   Six String Down

      Live performance

      With BB King, Bonnie Raitt, Robert Cray, Jimmy Ray Vaughan

Eric Clapton   1999

   Bell Bottom Blues

      Live performance

   Ramblin' On My Mind

      Live performance

Eric Clapton   2001

   Key to the Highway

      Live performance

Eric Clapton   2007

   Can't Find My Way Home

      Live with Steve Winwood

   River of Tears

      Live performance

Eric Clapton   2008

   Drifting Blues

      Live performance

Eric Clapton   2009

   Stormy Monday

      Live with the Allman Brothers Band

Eric Clapton   2010


      Live with BB King

   Running On Faith

      Live performance

   Somewhere Over the Rainbow

      Live performance


  Born in 1942 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Elvin Bishop moved to Chicago in 1960 where he was a physics student. (You've got to be smart only to consider it.) In 1963 he met Paul Butterfield, to become an original member of the latter's band. A couple tracks below feature Bishop's early contributions to the Paul Butterfield Blues Band. Bishop left Butterfield's band in 1968 to form the Elvin Bishop Group, releasing the album, 'The Elvin Bishop Group', in 1969.

Elvin Bishop   1964

   Born In Chicago

      With the Paul Butterfield Blues Band

   Goin' Down Slow

      With the Paul Butterfield Blues Band

Elvin Bishop   1966

   Our Love Is Drifting

      Composition: Elvin Bishop/Paul Butterfield

      With the Paul Butterfield Blues Band

Elvin Bishop   1969

   Dad Gum Ya Hide, Boy

   Honey Bee

   Sweet Potato

   The Things I Used to Do

Elvin Bishop   1972

   So Fine/Party Till The Cows Come Home

      Live at Fillmore West

Elvin Bishop   1975

   Travelin' Shoes

      Live performance

Elvin Bishop   1976

   Fooled Around & Fell In Love

Elvin Bishop   1979

   Rock Me Baby

      Live with Spencer Davis & John Mayall

Elvin Bishop   2010

   Red Dog Speaks

      Album: 'Red Dog Speaks'

Elvin Bishop   2013

   Going Fishin'


Birth of the Blues: Elvin Bishop

Elvin Bishop

Source: Rock and Roll Is My Addiction


Born in Chicago in 1943, no-nonsense guitarist Mike Bloomfield (also a pianist) was first recorded in 1964 (unreleased until his death in 1981). Bloomfield's famous membership in the Paul Butterfield Blues Band (Blues 4) began the next year in 1965. Bloomfield left Butterfield's band in 1967 to form Electric Flag, releasing the album, 'A Long Time Comin'' the same year. He reunited with Butterfield in 1968 to release the album, 'Super Session' with Al Kooper and Stephen Stills. Its sequel, 'The Live Adventures of Mike Bloomfield and Al Kooper', followed the same year. Bloomfield was discovered dead of drug overdose in his car in 1981. It is said he died at a party in San Francisco, was driven to a different location by two men and left there. The bottom four tracks below are live performances.

Mike Bloomfield   1964

   Blues For Roy

   Bullet Rag

   Last Night

Mike Bloomfield   1968

   Albert's Shuffle

   His Holy Modal Majesty

   Season of the Witch

Mike Bloomfield   1971

   Driftin' and Driftin'

   Stateboro Blues

Mike Bloomfield   1974

   Long Distance

      With Muddy Waters


Birth of the Blues: Michael Bloomfield

Mike Bloomfield

Source: Jazzquad

  Born Graham Anthony Barnes in 1942 in Nottingham, England, Alvin Lee began his professional career in the United Kingdom in 1962 upon joining a band called the Jaybirds, 1964 the earliest recording found on which Lee appears. In 1966 the Jaybirds were renamed Ten Years After in homage to Elvis Presley, 1956 the year Presley's career went supernova with songs such as 'Blue Suede Shoes' and 'Love Me Tender'. Ten Years After released its first album, titled 'Ten Years After', in 1967. Albeit several tunes by Ten Years After are indexed below Lee can also be heard with that band in A Birth of Rock & Roll 6. Lee released more than twenty albums during his career, his last, 'Still on the Road to Freedom' in 2012. He died in 2013, age 68, in Spain.

Alvin Lee   1964

   She's Not There

      With the Jaybirds

Alvin Lee   1969

   I Woke Up This Morning

      With Ten Years After

Alvin Lee   1972

   Turned Off T.V. Blues

      With Ten Years After

Alvin Lee   1975

   Truckin' Down The Other Way

Alvin Lee   1983

   Help Me

   Slow Blues

Alvin Lee   1989

   Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On

Alvin Lee   1995

   Slow Blues In C

      Album: 'Pure Blues'   With Ten Years After

   Lost In Love

      Album: 'Pure Blues'   With Ten Years After

Alvin Lee   1998

   Every Blues You've Ever Heard

      Album: 'In Flight'

Alvin Lee   2005

   King Of the Blues

      With Ten Years After


Birth of the Blues: Alvin Lee

Alvin Lee

Source: GPB Media


In addition to guitar Taj Mahal played harmonica and piano. Born Henry Saint Clair Fredericks in Harlem in 1944, Mahal was raised in Massachusetts where he began playing guitar at age thirteen. While yet a teenager he took the name, Taj Mahal, due to dreams about Gandhi and India. Mahal began working on a dairy farm at age sixteen, which he apparently liked so much that farming rivaled music as a career choice. It was at the University of Massachusetts, where Mahal was pursuing a degree in animal husbandry, that he formed his own band called the Elektras and music won over farming. In 1964 Mahal moved to Santa Monica, California, to put together his next band, the Rising Suns, with which he first recorded in 1965. Mahal sang lead with Ry Cooder on lead. Mahal released his first album, 'Taj Mahal', in 1968. In 1981 Mahal relocated to Kauai, Hawaii, and formed the Hula Blues Band, returning to the mainland in 1987 to release the album, 'Taj'. Most of the later recordings below are live performances.

Taj Mahal   1965

   .44 Blues

Taj Mahal   1971

   You're Gonna Need Somebody on Your Bond

     Live at Fillmore East NY

Taj Mahal   1972

   Jorge Ben

Taj Mahal   1991

   Blues With a Feeling

   Bourgeois Blues

Taj Mahal   1997

   Señor Blues

Taj Mahal   2000

   Blues Ain't Nothin'

Taj Mahal   2002

   Living On Easy

Taj Mahal   2006

   Big Butt Blues


Birth of the Blues: Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal

Source: Jazz à Brignoles

Birth of the Blues: Blues Project

Blues Project

Photo: William Morris Agency

Source: Artist Direct
The Blues Project was formed in NYC at the Cafe Au Go Go in 1966 by Danny Kalb (guitar), Steve Katz (guitar), Tommy Flanders (vocals) and Al Kooper switching from guitar to organ. 'Live at The Cafe Au Go Go' was issued the same year. The band then headed to San Francisco to appear at the Fillmore Auditorium whence it learned it was a band good to go with good reviews. Kooper, however, dropped out in '67, Katz following after the Monterey International Pop Festival in June of '67, he and Kooper to found Blood Sweat & Tears. Kalb left about the same time. 'Planned Obsolescence' per 1968 was the Project's fourth LP release with only Roy Blumenfeld (drums) and Andy Kulberg (bass) for original members. 'Lazarus' per 1971 would see Kalb, Katz, Kooper and Flanders gathering again, ditto 'Blues Project' in '72 minus Katz and Kooper. 'Reunion In Central Park' featured Kalb, Katz and Kooper with Flanders out in '73. A few reunions of this and that nature would follow over the years but the band was defunct by tat time.

The Blues Project   1966

   Goin' Down Luisiana

      LP: 'Live at the Cafe Au Go Go'

   I Can't Keep From Crying Sometimes

      LP: 'Projections'

   Steve's Song

      LP: 'Live at the Cafe Au Go Go'

The Blues Project   1967

   No Time Like the Right Time

      LP: 'Live at Town Hall'

   When There's Smoke There's Fire

      LP: 'Live at Town Hall'

The Blues Project   1968

   Dakota Recollection

      LP: 'Planned Obsolescence'

   If You Gotta Make a Fool of Somebody

      LP: 'Planned Obsolescence'

The Blues Project   1971


      LP: 'Lazarus'

The Blues Project   1972

   Back Door Man

      LP: 'Blues Project'

   I'm Ready

      LP: 'Blues Project'

The Blues Project   1973

   Reunion In Central Park



  Born in London in 1946, Peter Green first recorded in 1966 with a group called Peter B's Looners: 'If You Wanna Be Happy' b/w 'Jodrell's Blues'. It was during his three months with Peter Barden's band that he met Mic Fleetwood, also a member. That same year he met with opportunity to fill Eric Clapton's spot in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. His debut recordings with the Bluesbreakers occur on the album, 'A Hard Road', released in 1967. Later that year Green formed Fleetwood Mac with Mic Fleetwood (drums, also a Bluesbreaker), Jeremy Spencer (guitar) and Bob Brunning (bass, until replaced by John McVie, also a Bluesbreaker, later that year). Though there would be reunions, Green left Fleetwood Mac in 1970, his first solo recordings occurring that year with an album of jam sessions, 'The End of the Game'. About 1973 Green was finding his mental condition too debilitating to work. Later diagnosed with schizophrenia, he disappeared from the music business until 1978, gradually emerging again with the release of 'Apostle' b/w 'Tribal Dance', which would be included on his album, 'In the Skies', released the next year.

Peter Green   1966

   Jodrell's Blues

      With Peter B's Looners

   If You Wanna Be Happy

      With Peter B's Looners

Peter Green   1967

   Alabama Blues

      Composition: JB Lenoir   With Fleetwood Mac

   The Same Way

      Composition: JB Lenoir   With Fleetwood Mac

   The Supernatural

      Composition: JB Lenoir   With Fleetwood Mac

Peter Green   1968

   Lazy Poker Blues

      With Fleetwood Mac

Peter Green   1970

   The Green Manalish

      Live with Fleetwood Mac

   Timeless Time

Peter Green   1971

   Heavy Heart

Peter Green   1972

   Beasts of Burden

Peter Green   1978


      Also appears on the album 'In the Skies'

   Tribal Dance

      Also appears on the album 'In the Skies'

Peter Green   1979

   In the Skies

      Album: 'In the Skies'

Peter Green   1998

   The Supernatural

      Live performance

Peter Green   2001

   A Fool No More

Peter Green   2010

   Blues Get Off My Shoulder

      Live performance


Birth of the Blues: Peter Green

Peter Green

Photo: Graham Wiltshire

Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Source: America Pink

Birth of the Blues: Savoy Brown

Savoy Brown

Source: Electric Buffalo

British blues rock band Savoy Brown was formed in 1966 by guitarist Kim Simmond. It's original members were Bryce Portius (vocals), Trevor Jeavons (keyboard), Ray Chappell (bass), Leo Manning (drums) and John O'Leary (harmonica). Savoy Brown has from is start been through nigh countless personnel changes, yet Kim Simmond remains at its lead to this day. (Three of Savoy Brown's members in 1970, Roger Earl, Dave Peveritt and Tony Stevens, would leave Savoy Brown to form the rock band Foghat the same year.) With the exception of 'My Own Man', all tracks below for year 1967 are cut from Savoy Brown's first album, 'Shake Down'. Another track from that album is indexed at Rock 6.

Savoy Brown   1967

   I Smell Trouble

   It's My Own Fault

   Rock Me Baby

Savoy Brown   1969

   Tolling Bells

   Train to Nowhere

Savoy Brown   1970

   Looking In

   Louisiana Blues

   Money Can't Save Your Soul

Savoy Brown   1971

   Tell Mama

   Wang Dang Doodle

Savoy Brown   1972

   Hellbound Train

   Lost And Lonely Child

Savoy Brown   1981

   Live At The Bottom Line


Savoy Brown   2004

   Tell Mama

Savoy Brown   2011

   Voodoo Moon



  Born in Harmontown, Mississippi, in 1926, RL (Roy Lee) Burnside left for Chicago at age eighteen to find better employment. Though he met his cousin-in-law, Muddy Waters, there, and began playing guitar (also marrying in 1949), Chicago otherwise offered little but the murder of his father, two brothers and an uncle. In 1959 he headed back for Mississippi with his wife, only to kill a man during a dice game and go to prison for six months, concerning which Burnside later said, "I didn't mean to kill nobody. I just meant to shoot the sonofabitch in the head and two times in the chest. Him dying was between him and the Lord." Burnside's first recordings occurred in 1967, but were not released until 1969 in combination with further sessions that year. Burnside died in 2005 in Memphis. The majority of tracks below from 1978 onward are live performances.

RL Burnside   1969

   Catfish Blues

      Recorded 1967

   Goin' Away Blues

      Recorded 1969

   Goin' Down South

      Recorded 1967

   My Black Name a Ringin'

      Recorded 1969

   Poor Black Mattie

      Recorded 1967

   Nine Days In Jail

      Recorded 1969

   Sat Down On My Bed and Cried

      Recorded 1969

   Tom Wilson's Place

      Recorded 1969

   Two Trains Runnin'

      Recorded 1969

   Walkin' Blues

      Recorded 1967

RL Burnside   1978

   Burnside Blues

   See My Jumper Hanging Out On The Line

   Poor Boy Long Ways From Home

RL Burnside   1984

   See My Jumper Hanging Out On The Line

RL Burnside   1995

   Nightmare Blues

RL Burnside   1998

   Long Haired Doney

   Rollin' and Tumblin'

   Skinny Woman

RL Burnside   2000

   Hard Time Killin' Floor Blues

      Album: 'Wish I Was in Heaven Sitting Down'

RL Burnside   2001

   Goin' Away Baby

      Album: 'Well, Well, Well'


Birth of the Blues: RL Burnside

RL Burnside

Source: Long Live Rock'n'Roll

  The Climax Chicago Blues Band was formed in 1968 in England by Colin Cooper. Its name was shortened to the Climax Blues Band in 1970. Original members were Pete Haycock, Derek Holt, George Newsome, Arthur Wood and Richard Jones. The band had experienced a fair number of personnel changes over the years, though Cooper led the group over the decades until his death from cancer in 2008 (leaving no more founding members). The Climax Blues Band released its first album in 1969, titled 'The Climax Chicago Blues Band'. More of the Climax Blues Band will be found in A Birth of Rock n Roll 6.

Climax Blues Band   1969


   Hey Baby, Everything's Gonna Be Alright

   Looking For My Baby

   Wee Baby Blues

Climax Blues Band   1970

   A Lot of Bottle

    Album   Bonus track

Climax Blues Band   1973

   Seventh Son

   So Many Roads

Climax Blues Band   2004

   I Love the Life I Live

   Let The Good Times Roll


Birth of the Blues: Climax Blues Band

Climax Blues Band

Source: Jazzy Soul

  This history is supposed to cease with musicians who released their first vinyl before 1970. But slide guitarist, Bonnie Raitt, too requests but a step beyond the limit. Born in 1949 in Burbank, CA, Raitt was the daughter of the Broadway musical star, John Raitt. Graduating from high school in Poughkeepsie, New York, Raitt entered Radcliffe College in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with an interest in African studies and political theory.  In 1969 she bought a used Fender Stratocaster for $120, the same she's  bottlenecked ever since. About that time she met blues promoter, Dick Waterman, during her sophomore year with whom she left Cambridge for Philadelphia. She was performing gigs at the Gaslight Cafe in NYC for something like $50 a night when a journalist for 'Newsweek' magazine began extolling her, to the result that Warner Brothers picked her up, she releasing the LP, 'Bonnie Raitt', in 1971. From her 1972 album, 'Give It Up', dedicated to the people of North Vietnam, to No Nukes, Raitt has involved herself with political activism. She has also worked for charitable causes. She is well known to have supplied headstones to the graves of several older blues musicians. Raitt has been the recipient of ten Grammy Awards and was elected into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame in 2000. Her most important Grammy win was Album of the Year in 1990 for 'Nick of Time' ('89). Raitt has also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Americana Music Association. Raitt has issued 19 albums, 'Slipstream' her latest as of 2012. 'Dig in Deep' is scheduled for release in 2016. Yet giving powerful performances, she continues to tour and make television appearances as of this writing.

Bonnie Raitt   1971

   Since I Fell For You

     Album: 'Bonnie Raitt'

   Walking Blues

     Album: 'Bonnie Raitt'

   Woman Be Wise

     Album: 'Bonnie Raitt'

Bonnie Raitt   1972

   Blender Blues

     Live at the Rainbow Room (Philadelphia)

   Richland Woman Blues

     Live at the Rainbow Room (Philadelphia)

Bonnie Raitt   1976

   Kokomo Blues

     Filmed live

Bonnie Raitt   1977


     Filmed live

Bonnie Raitt   1989

   Have a Heart

     Filmed live

   Live in Oakland

     Filmed concert

Bonnie Raitt   1991

   All at Once

     Album: 'Luck of the Draw'

Bonnie Raitt   1992

   I Can't Make You Love Me

     Television appearance: Grammy Awards

Bonnie Raitt   1993


     Live at Shoreline Amphitheatre

Bonnie Raitt   1995

   Love Me Like a Man

     Filmed live

Bonnie Raitt   2009

   Love Has No Pride

     Filmed live at Madison Square Garden

Bonnie Raitt   2012

   Sweet Home Chicago

     Kennedy Center Honors (Buddy Guy)


Birth of the Blues: Bonnie Raitt

Bonnie Raitt

Source: The Giggs
Birth of the Blues: Hound Dog Taylor

Hound Dog Taylor

Source: Joe's Beat
This history is supposed to cease with musicians who released their first vinyl before 1970. But it would be amiss to not include longtime Chicago guitarist, Hound Dog Taylor, who didn't make his debut album release until 1971. Born Theodore Roosevelt Taylor in Natchez, Mississippi, in 1915, Taylor began playing guitar at age twenty, then headed for Chicago in 1942. Playing in clubs, he was able to lose his day job about 1957. Taylor toured Europe with the American Folk Blues Festival, performing with Little Walter and Koko Taylor, in 1967. After the release of 'Hound Dog Taylor and the HouseRockers' in 1971 Taylor toured the States until releasing 'Natural Boogie' in 1973. That was followed by a tour of Australia and New Zealand. Taylor's third LP, 'Beware of the Dog', was recorded live in 1974 but not released until after Taylor's death of lung cancer in 1975 in Alsip, Illinois.

Hound Dog Taylor   1967

   Wang Dang Doodle

     American Folk Blues Festival

    Filmed live with Koko Taylor

   Wild About You Baby

     American Folk Blues Festival

    Filmed live with Little Walter

Hound Dog Taylor   1971

   Gonna Send You Back To Georgia

     Album: 'Hound Dog Taylor and the HouseRockers'

   She's Gone

     Album: 'Hound Dog Taylor and the HouseRockers'

Hound Dog Taylor   1973

   Natural Boogie


Hound Dog Taylor   1974

   Let's Get Funky

     Album: 'Beware of Dog'


  This history is supposed to cease with musicians who released their first vinyl before 1970. But Stevie Ray Vaughan was a talent too remarkable to not hop to just the other side of the fence, he first appearing on recordings in 1971 as a guitarist in the Cast of Thousands. Those songs, 'Red, White and Blue' and 'I Heard a Voice Last Night', were issued on the album, 'A New Hi', a compilation of Dallas bands. Born in 1954 in Dallas, Stevie Vaughan was the brother of Jimmy Vaughan, a no-joke guitarist himself, famous as a member of the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and with whom Stevie played in a band called Texas Storm in 1970. After recording with the Cast of Thousands, while also working with a band called Liberation, Vaughan dropped out of school in 1971 and headed to Austin to form his own band, Blackbird. Personnel problems made that band a brief one, after which Vaughan joined various bands in the seventies: Krackerjack, the Nightcrawlers (rejected album recorded for A&M in '73) and the Cobras. Vaughan was with the Cobras when they released 'Other Days' b/w 'Texas Clover' in 1975 for Viper. (Dates vary from 1973 to 1977.) In 1977 Vaughan formed the band, Triple Threat Revue. That band recorded one single in January 1978 including 'I'm Crying'. (Later bootlegs of Vaughan performing at Stubbs Barbecue in 1977 have been produced.) Vaughn changed the name of his band to Double Trouble in 1978, name taken from a song by Otis Rush. Stevie also began billing himself as Stevie Ray in 1978. Double Trouble was a struggling band until its 1982 performance at the Montreux Jazz Festival (available on DVD). Vaughan had had a chance to jam with ZZ Top in 1970, but now Jackson Browne offered him the use of his personal recording studio in Los Angeles to record ten songs, and David Bowie secured his talent for his 1983 album, 'Let's Dance'. Vaughan signed up with Epic Records in 1983, releasing 'Texas Flood' that year. His music video, 'Love Struck Baby', was also released that year. Texas had been major host to blues music since the twenties. But upon Stevie Ray's arrival the world was to realize that Texas blues were a major deal as unlike afore. Vaughan's first tour of Europe followed, then a performance at Carnegie Hall in October 1984. That was followed by a couple hours of signing autographs for some 500 fans at a record shop in Greenwich Village. Yet the more notable was that Vaughan's rise to fame went step in step with cocaine and whisky. He'd been arrested in 1979 for use of cocaine, receiving two years probation. But powder and whisky were a mix too nice for Vaughan until it lost all measure, it said he consumed a quart of whisky and quarter ounce of cocaine each day before becoming ill in Denmark of near-death hydration in 1986. He went into rehabilitation and quickly bounced back two months later for his 'Live Alive' tour. His stellar career thereafter was nipped short in 1990 like not a few others in the music industry, by crash in a flying vessel. Vaughan had given a performance in East Troy, Wisconsin, with Eric Clapton when he boarded a helicopter for Chicago on a foggy night with three members of Clapton's entourage. The helicopter rose and then veered into a mountain fifty feet from its summit of nine hundred, killing all with the pilot. Vaughan's final studio album had been 'In Step', released in 1989. The first posthumous release of Vaughan's earlier recordings was 'The Sky Is Crying' in 1990.

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1971

   I Heard a Voice Last Night

    With the Cast of Thousands 

  Red, White And Blue

     With the Cast of Thousands 

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1975

   Other Days

      With Paul Ray & the Cobras

  Texas Clover

      With Paul Ray & the Cobras

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1977

   Something Inside

      With Triple Threat Revue

     Recorded at Stubb's Barbecue   Lubbock TX

      From a bootleg LP of unknown release date

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1978

  Albert's Alley

      With Triple Threat Revue

      Recorded at Stubb's Barbecue   Lubbock TX

      From a bootleg LP of unknown release date

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1979?

   Live at the New Bluebird

      With Triple Threat Revue

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1983

   Dirty Pool

      Album: 'Texas Flood'

  In Session

       Duets with Albert King   Filmed live

  Live at the Bayou Club

  Love Struck Baby

      Album: 'Texas Flood'

  Pride and Joy

      Album: 'Texas Flood'

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1984

   Cold Shot

     Music video 

  Little Wing


      Filmed live with Jeff Beck & Jimmie Vaughan

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1985

   Live at Capital Theatre

  Live at Montreux

     Filmed concert

  Texas Flood

      Filmed live

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1986

   Live at the American Caravan

      Filmed concert

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1988

   Lookin' Out the Window

      Filmed live

  Willie the Wimp

      Filmed live

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1989


      Filmed live

  In Step



       'Arsenio Hall Show'

   One Night In Texas

     Filmed concert

Stevie Ray Vaughan   1990

   MTV Unplugged


Birth of the Blues: Stevie Ray Vaughan

Stevie Ray Vaughan

Photo: Howard Rosenberg

Source: Albümatine

With Stevie Ray Vaughan we pause this history of modern blues music. We will be listing more bands and musicians as such occur.



Early Blues 1: Guitar

Early Blues 2: Vocal - Other Instruments

Modern Blues 1: Guitar

Modern Blues 2: Vocal - Other Instruments

Modern Blues 3: Black Gospel Appendix


Medieval - Renaissance


Galant - Classical

Romantic: Composers born 1770 to 1840

Romantic - Impressionist

Expressionist - Modern

Modern: Composers born 1900 to 1950




Country Western


Early Jazz 1: Ragtime - Bands - Horn

Early Jazz 2: Ragtime - Other Instrumentation

Early Jazz 3: Ragtime - Song - Hollywood

Swing Era 1: Big Bands

Swing Era 2: Song

Modern 1: Saxophone

Modern 2: Trumpet - Other Horn

Modern 3: Piano

Modern 4: Guitar - Other String

Modern 5: Percussion - Other Orchestration

Modern 6: Song

Modern 7: Latin Jazz - Latin Recording

Modern 8: United States 1960 - 1970

Modern 9: International 1960 - 1970

Rock & Roll

Early - Boogie Woogie - R&B - Soul - Disco

Doo Wop

The Big Bang - Fifties American Rock

UK Beat

British Invasion

Total War - Sixties American Rock

Other Musical Genres - Popular Music Appendix

Musician Indexes

Classical - Medieval to Renaissance

Classical - Baroque to Classical

Classical - Romantic to Modern

The Blues

Bluegrass - Folk

Country Western

Jazz Early - Ragtime - Swing Jazz

Jazz Modern - Horn

Jazz Modern - Piano - String

Jazz Modern - Percussion - Song - Other

Jazz Modern - 1960 to 1970

Boogie Woogie - Doo Wop - R&B - Rock & Roll - Soul

UK Beat - British Invasion

Sixties American Rock - Popular

Latin Recording - Europe

Latin Recording - The Caribbean - South America


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