Blueprint for the Blues
"The roots are important. Sister Ethel Mae was at the piano in the Assembly of God Pentecostal church. Brother Eugene directed our singing, calling songs from the dog-eared green hymnal. As a child, I was confused by the radical behavior of some of the adults with their moaning and wailing, sometimes speaking in tongues. It was hard to understand the deviation from their usual adult demeanor...but I did dig the singing.
When I was little we attended church fairly regularly. My Dad didn't go and my Mom was an occasional backslider, but my aunt lived across the field from our small farm outside Edwardsville IL and felt it her duty to get us kids to church even if our parents didn't make it. I went until I was old enough to make excuses and hide out. The gift I retained from my churchgoing days was my love of singing.
I heard a lot of music thanks to my older sister's record collection. She was into popular music and R&B sounds of the late 1950s and early 60s. She was a teenager and had a room of her own into which all others were forbidden entry. I would sneak in when she was out and listen to records and then carefully put everything back as I found it. She never caught me. When I was about 14 a schoolmate of mine, Bob Shindel, turned me on to the recently reissued records of Son House, Mississippi John Hurt, Robert Johnson, and others. This opened up a world of music I never knew existed, and when I started playing guitar at age seventeen it was some of the first material I tried to learn to play."
I still love and play these songs today. I hope you enjoy this collection.
Special Thanks : Parry Marston • Richard Russell • David Lange • Marianne Lockhart • John Miller • Johnnie Ward • Applegate • Marita Holdaway • Steven Sherrif • Benham Gallery • Rob Moitoza • Brad Inserra • Scott Law • all the musicians for their time and talent