The Belated Blues

Hellhound by Mitch Myers (real audio): An interesting NPR piece I heard on the way home yesterday. It is based on the story of legendary blues artist Robert Johnson, who, legend has it, sold his soul to the devil to obtain his amazing guitar skills. As if to strengthen this Faustian explaination, Johnson explored in his music the battle of good against evil and recorded songs like “Hell Hound on My Trail” and “Me and the Devil Blues.” There is some contention as to where Robert is buried, too. Two graves in different cemetaries in Greenwood, Mississippi both bear his name, and there is a popular roadside spot nearby where some believe he was interred. Myers’ story is an interesting one, concerning ghastly secret track on Robert Johnson’s boxed set. In his short life, Johnson recorded only 41 tracks, many of which are alternate takes of the same song, but his sound has had an large impact on blues and rock music ever since.