King of the Delta Blues Singers
Oliver “Shiny” Blakemore
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There’s a whole world of music here.

The first real blues I learned was “Ramblin’ on my Mind.” My current favorite is “Malted Milk.” (I know it’s not on this album, but still. It’s awesome.) Robert Johnson is like walking along a dark country road in the gloom and dust, the way you remember it from your warm, well-lit house.

Long ago I had a small collection of printed “folk” music from before the civil war, 1840’s or so. I like to think of Robert Johnson listening to that stuff the way Chuck Berry listened to Benny Goodman. Like he wanted to embody that, just him and his voice and his guitar; make it sexy. And you’re right about The Heavy. Just farther along the spectrum.

A little piece from the Piedmont. This is the second blues I learned. I’m still learning it. “Death Don’t Have No Mercy,” by the Reverend Gary Davis.

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