Friday, April 28, 2006

Alan Lomax & The Red Blues

Alan Lomax playing guitar, sometime between 1938 and 1950

I often say, "If you want to play the blues, you have to live the blues." When I make this statement I am often referring to the musicians for the most part. But the more I study the blues and read about the men and women who were on the edges, and not on the stage I realize that many of them had to live the blues too.

Consider the case of Mr. Alan Lomax (January 31, 1915 – July 19, 2002). The LA recently ran an article that chronicles that case against Mr. Lomax by the FBI. You can read it here, The Red-rumor blues By Ted Gioia in a Special to The Times.

It makes me sad, when I think that a man who brought us the likes of Muddy Waters, Leadbelly, Woody Guthrie, Jelly Roll Morton and many other musicians had to suffer like this.

But there your go, you have to live to blues.

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