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Sonny Boy Williamson – The Real Folk Blues


Listen and it’s not hard to hear why a generation or two of blues-smitten rockers held him especially dear, be it the Allman Brothers (the original One Way Out, with longtime partner Robert Lockwood Jr. supplying the familiar guitar licks) or Led Zeppelin (a lugubrious, boogied-up take of Willie Dixon’s Bring It On Home). Punctuated by harp blasts that could turn from sharply staccato to lyrically wrenching, Williamson’s leathery voice muses over his being Too Young To Die or Too Old To Think with the self-deprecating indifference that became a trademark. Though these tracks are the cream of his last years, they’re more boozy celebration than elegy.

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SKU: Chess LP-1503 [2] Categories: , , , Tags: , ,


The biography of Sonny Boy Williamson is something of an enigma, even to ardent blues fans. Indeed, he isn’t even the “real” Williamson; a shrewd businessman simply gave singer-mouth harpist Aleck “Rice” Miller the name after the 1948 murder of popular blues artist John Lee Williamson. Still, Miller/Williamson’s remarkable career literally bridged Robert Johnson and Eric Clapton, both his music and life embodying a free-wheeling, hard-living lifestyle that became something of a rock and blues cliché. After considerable local radio success in the Delta, Miller/Williamson ended up at Chicago’s Chess Records in the mid-1950s, where all but one of these tracks originated in the early ‘60s. But by the time Chess originally issued this ill-timed collection (belatedly compiled to cash in on a waning ‘60s folk boom), Williamson was six months dead.


One Way Out
Too Young To Die
Trust My Baby
Checkin’ Up On My Baby
Sad To Be Alone
Got To Move
Bring It On Home
Down Child
Peach Tree
That’s All I Want
Too Old To Think


Additional information

Weight 0.480 kg
Dimensions 32.0 × 32.0 × 2.0 cm