1-2 Weeks
Sweet Home Chicago/Walkin' Blues

TEG 1085EP TEG 1085EP

RSD Black Friday 2019 release. "After years of constant road work in juke joints and on street corners and plantations, Johnson matured into a remarkable, advanced and complex professional musician with skills beyond the average bluesman. Robert entered the studio confident and prepared to record with outstanding original material. Utilizing a driving boogie rhythm, the third song in the first session recorded November 23, 1936 was the blues standard 'Sweet Home Chicago.' Destined to become one of Johnson's most popular songs, it was recorded numerous times over the years by such prominent artists as Magic Sam, Buddy Guy, Earl Hooker, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Fleetwood Mac, Freddie King, Eric Clapton, and Junior Parker. The origin of 'Sweet Home Chicago' is loosely based on two songs, 'Kokomo Blues' recorded by Scapper Blackwell in 1928, and Kokomo Arnold's 'Old Original Kokomo Blues' recorded in 1934. While both songs made reference to going back to Kokomo, Indiana, Johnson changed the character of the song to reflect the desire to leave the South for better opportunities (a common goal of many discriminated African Americans in the Deep South): 'Back to the land of California, to my sweet home Chicago.' The fourth song in the third session recorded November 27, 1936 is the classic 'Walkin' Blues,' written by Johnson's mentor Son House. Johnson's interpretation of 'Walkin' Blues' incorporates elements of House's 'My Black Mama' and 'Death Letter Blues' with a similar slide guitar technique and vocal approach inspired by House. 'Walkin' Blues' remains a popular song among musicians, recorded by Muddy Waters, Paul Butterfield, Taj Mahal, Bonnie Raitt, Eric Clapton, and The Grateful Dead."