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Blues Hall Of Fame Podcast

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Blues Hall of Fame - 021 - Son House

Born into in rural, baptist Mississippi in 1902, Son House felt called to be a preacher at the young age of 15. But it just wasn’t meant to be. As he matured into adulthood, he developed an affinity for alcohol. It proved to be a strange mix of ideals. The one evening, while drinking and gambling with friends, House tried his hand at singing the blues. The die was cast. The preacher’s booming voice filled the room, the bottleneck guitar answered, and a bluesman was born. Son House...


Blues Hall of Fame - 019 - Ray Charles

Ray Charles, blind since the age of 7 and orphaned at 14, did blues, jazz, and gospel as well as anyone before or since. And, by doing them all together at once, he pioneered what we soon came to recognize as Soul. That’s right. Ray Charles is the father of that whole genre. Furthermore, he took these forms of Black American music, mingled them just enough with contemporary pop sounds and had massive crossover success. Ray Charles was one of the very first African American artists to be...


Blues Hall of Fame - 018 - Fats Domino

Fats Domino was born into a musical, French Creole family in the Lower 9th in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1928. His first language was Creole French. His talents blossomed early. His musical gifts, along with with his laid back and easygoing demeanor, created a lot of demand - everybody wanted to work with Fats. He had his first hit by the time he was 21, and he invented New Orleans-style rock n roll with it. That 1949 hit for Imperial Records - ”The Fat Man” - sold over a million copies...


Blues Hall of Fame - 012 - Muddy Waters

We continue the series with the man who brought electricity to the blues, and the blues to the big city, Muddy Waters. Born McKinley Morganfield in 1913 in Issaquenna, MS, he grew up on the Stovall Plantation just outside of Clarksdale. There, young Muddy fell under the influence and tutelage of the travelling bluesmen that came to perform there. Bluesmen like the great Son House and the king of the delta blues himself, Robert Johnson. Muddy moved to Chicago in 1943, taking with him his...


Blues Hall of Fame - 010 - Skip James

It’s hard to believe that Skip James almost drifted into obscurity. Like most enshrined in the Blues Hall of Fame, he was an absolute original. A genuine musical innovator. These days Skip James is considered by many to be the greatest of the delta blues singers. His songwriting, vocal stylings, and otherworldy ability on the guitar and piano influenced everyone, including a young Robert Johnson. But back in the 1930’s, when he was cutting records for Paramount, he didn’t look like he...


Blues Hall of Fame - 006 - BB King

We continue this series with The King of The Blues, BB King. Born in 1925 on a cotton plantation near Itta Benna, MS, Riley Benjamin King found his muse early in the sacred sounds of rural, Pentacostal church. First given a guitar by his mother’s cousin, famed blues man Bukka White, King soon traded the cruel world of cotton plantations and sharecropping for the excitement and opportunities of life in Memphis and on Beale Street. Never has it the phrase “and the rest is history” been more...


Blues Hall of Fame - 004 - T-Bone Walker

This episode we learn about the electrified marvel that was Thibeaux Walker, or “T-Bone,” as he came to be known around the world. Walker was the original guitar hero of the blues, inspiring BB King, Chuck Berry, and Jimi Hendrix to pick up the guitar. He invented the modern guitar solo. As a pioneer of jump blues, and the man that introduced electricity to that genre, he innovated a sound that gave rise to the development of rock & roll.


Blues Hall of Fame - 003 - Memphis Jug Band

Led by the enigmatic Will Shade, the Memphis Jug band was an ever-evolving collective sporting different, talent-packed lineups for every gig and every recording session. The group was on hand for the very first commercial recording session in Memphis, TN, and went on to record over 100 sides for Victor, Champion, and Okeh Records in their heyday. Guitars, fiddles, kazoos, washtub bass, and ceramic jugs laid the foundation of their unique sound, but what drew the crowds and sold the...