Southern Blues Influences

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What is the Blues? In the words of B.B. King, “Blues is a simple music and I’m a simple man” (qtd. in King and Ritz). From its simple and primitive origins, not only has the Blues affected culture throughout the Deep South, but Southern culture has had a strong influence on the creation of the Blues and its musicians. The Blues’ unique sound came from the slave songs, such as the work songs and field hollers of the enslaved African Americans (PBS). Nearly every song on the radio today has its roots in the Delta Blues. Although the Blues is definitely from the Mississippi Delta, the date and exact location of the place of origin will forever remain unknown. However, Dockery Farms claims to be the place where the Blues began. The owners of Dockery Farms were known for their good treatment of their workers and their farm grew to house about two thousand workers. Among those workers was a young man named Charley Patton. He was mentored by a musician named Henry Sloan and soon Charley gained a reputation for being a masterful musician. Charley went on to inspire and influence many Blues artists (Kirkpatrick 48-49). The Blues changed when African Americans moved north. To reflect their new life, the…show more content…
Some musicians which he has influenced are: Eric Clapton, Robert Plant, and ZZ Top (Kirkpatrick 50). Clapton had previously said, “Muddy took the music of the Delta plantation, transplanted it in a Chicago nightclub, surrounded it in a electric band, and changed the course of popular music forever” (qtd. in Kirkpatrick 50-51). The styles of both the Blues and the nearly synonymous Gospels are practically interchangeable; Blues songs can be transformed into Gospel songs and vice versa. With that being said, both styles have their own sounds and meanings (Mississippi Blues Commission). And some say that they are “two sides of the same coin” (qtd. in Mississippi Blues
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