Tag Archives: postwar blues

Johnny Shines: The Complete 1989 Living Blues Interview

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    Long before becoming a force in Chicago blues, Johnny Shines hoboed with Robert Johnson through Depression-era America. They hopped freights, played on street corners, shared rooms and whiskey, and made it as far north as Canada. Johnson, the Mississippi Delta’s most celebrated blues performer, perished in 1938, and for the next half-century, his spirit haunted the music of Johnny Shines. It echoed in his turnarounds, mournful bottleneck slides, impassioned lyrics, and falsetto moans. At clubs, house parties, and other gatherings, Johnny Shines was just as likely to launch into Johnson’s “Crossroads Blues,” “Terraplane Blues,” and “Sweet Home Chicago” as he was his own “Evil-Hearted Woman Blues,” “A Little Tenderness,” and “Evening Sun.” Continue reading

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