FEATURED ARTIST / S
DOCD-5148 Son House At Home – 1969 Rochester recordings.
Son House, vocal guitar, bottleneck slide guitar.
Includes Evie House, tambourine.
Mississippi Country Blues
Informative booklet notes by Bob Groom.
When back in 1964 Nick Perls, Dick Waterman and Phil Spiro searched the Mississippi Delta region for clues as to the whereabouts of legendary blues recording artist Son House, they first drew a blank. Finally, in Robinsonville - where Robert Johnson first played blues in a juke joint - they got a lead which eventually took them right back to New York State. In June of that year, they arrived at Son House's home in Rochester's riverfront Corn Hill neighbourhood, almost a thousand miles from Mississippi! Son had lived here since 1943, soon after being recorded for the Library of Congress by Alan Lomax. Son had not performed blues for many years and was completely unaware of the international enthusiasm for the 10 sides he recorded for Paramount in 1930 and those he later made for Lomax. Although a little rusty at first, after practising for some weeks he gradually relearned his old guitar skills and his voice strengthened to the point where he was able to play concerts again. "When he played, his eyes rolled back in his head and he went somewhere else. Whether it was Robinsonville in the '30's or wherever, he transported himself back without any trickery and became the essence of Delta. He would then finish the song, blink his eyes, and then re-accustom himself to where he was at the time." - Dick Waterman, remembering Son House. By the time John Hammond of Columbia Records decided to record him in April 1965, he was singing and playing with such power and conviction that the years seemed to have rolled away, with some of performances rivalling those for the Library of National Congress twenty years before. The informal recordings of Son and his wife (who plays tambourine and gives a spoken message) on this CD were made by Steve Lobb at their Rochester home, just prior to Son's second European tour. They remind us of the remarkable return to music of one of the very greatest of all the many Mississippi blues singers.