Nothing but ......

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Nothing But The Blues XXI

Mississippi John Hurt was born as John Smith Hurt in 1893 somewhere in the Mississippi delta, where he spent the major part of his life in a town called Avalon. Hence the name Mississippi John Hurt.
He left school at the age of 9 and earned his living as a cotton-picker. John's musical example was the country star Jimmie Rodgers. But as John taught himself to play the guitar he developed his own technique. This three-finger-picking technique later influenced a complete generation of musicians. John was discovered in Avalon and sent to Memphis in February 1928 where he recorded 8 songs, of which only 2 songs were ever released. These two songs where such a success that John recorded some more in December 1928 in New York. From this point on John's life story sounds a lot like the story of Skip James.
After this recording session nobody ever heard anything of John until a great Blues fan traced him during the early 60's. John was found thanks to a song he recorded in December 1928: Avalon Blues. He brought John to the 1964 Newport Festival where, together with Skip James, he was the sensation of the festival. (I have some video coverage of John and Skip backstage at this festival playing together!) At this same festival Bob Dylan was so impressed with John's guitar technique that he changed his way of playing.
John was an instant hit and performed on big stages for a mainly white audience until he died in November 1966 in his beloved state Mississippi.

This disc contains the two released songs from February 1928: Frankie (track 10) and Nobody's dirty business (track 3). The other tracks all date from the December 1928, New York recording session.

The password = "scrooge".
Please delete these files within 24 hours. If you like this music buy the album and support the industry


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