180 Gram Vinyl Record
Limited edition 180-gram vinyl reissue
Son House's place, not only in the history of Delta blues, but in the overall history of the music, is a very high one indeed. He was a major innovator of the Delta style, along with his playing partners Charley Patton and Willie Brown. Few listening experiences in the blues are as intense as hearing one of Son House's original 1930s recordings for the Paramount label. Entombed in a hailstorm of surface noise and scratches, one can still be awestruck by the emotional fervor House puts into his singing and slide playing. Little wonder then that the man became more than just an influence on some white English kid with a big amp; he was the main source of inspiration to both Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson, and it doesn't get much more pivotal than that.
He was born Eddie James House, Jr., on March 21, 1902, in Riverton, Miss. By the age of 15, he was preaching the gospel in various Baptist churches as the family seemingly wandered from one plantation to the next. He didn't even bother picking up a guitar until he turned 25; to quote House, "I didn't like no guitar when I first heard it; oh gee, I couldn't stand a guy playin' a guitar. I didn't like none of it." But if his ambivalence to the instrument was obvious, even more obvious was the simple fact that Son hated plantation labor even more and had developed a taste for corn whiskey. After drunkenly launching into a blues at a house frolic in Lyon, Miss., one night and picking up some coin for doing it, the die seemed to be cast; Son House may have been a preacher, but he was part of the blues world now.
"Here on Father of Folk Blues, is the first such presentation of a Delta blues musician done by Columbia, which seemed like a pretty hip label at the time, since they had both Bob Dylan and Paul Revere and the Raiders. The man's picture on the front is mesmerizing, in a word; the white shirt, black string tie, and silver steel guitar just adding to the excitement. There is a second blues legend appearing here as well. Guitarist and harmonica player Al Wilson was a founding member of Canned Heat, and a musician so good at what he did that he became a sterling example of the possibility that young white blues fans could actually learn to play this music really well, with intensity. The original pressing contains nine tracks, each of them gems."— All Music Guide
|1. Death Letter|
|3. Louise McGhee|
|4. John The Revelator—Public Domain|
|5. Empire State Express|
|6. Preachin' Blues|
|7. Grinning In Your Face|
|9. Levee Camp Moan|