Tag Archives | blues
Johnnie Clyde Johnson

April 13th in African American History – Johnnie Clyde Johnson

April 13, 2005 Johnnie Clyde Johnson, blues piano player, died. Johnson was born July 8, 1924 in Fairmont, West Virginia and began playing the piano at the age of four. He joined the United States Marine Corp during World War II and played in the all serviceman jazz orchestra. Johnson moved to St. Louis in […]

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Marion “Little Walter” Jacobs

February 15th in African American History – Marion “Little Walter” Jacobs

February 15, 1968 Marion “Little Walter” Jacobs, blues harmonica player, died. Jacobs was born May 1, 1930 in Marksville, Louisiana. Jacobs moved to Chicago in 1945 and from 1948 to 1952 played in Muddy Walters’ band. His harmonica is featured on most of Walters’ classic recordings from the 1950s.

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Sam John

January 30th in African American History – Sam John “Lightnin” Hopkins

January 30, 1982 Sam John “Lightnin” Hopkins, country blues guitarist, singer and songwriter, died. Hopkins was born March 15, 1912 in Centreville, Texas. He developed a deep appreciation of the blues at the age of eight but did not make his first recording until 1946. By 1960, Hopkins had cemented his reputation as one of […]

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Ray Charles Robinson

September 23rd in African American History – Ray Charles Robinson

September 23, 1930 Ray Charles Robinson (Ray Charles), R&B, gospel and blues vocalist and pianist, was born in Albany, Georgia. At the age of 5, Charles began to lose his sight and was completely blind by the age of 7. In 1943, he began to play gigs around Tallahassee and Jacksonville, Florida. In 1947, he […]

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James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix

September 18th in African American History – James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix

September 18, 1970 James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix, guitarist, singer and songwriter, died in London, England. Hendrix was born November 27, 1942 in Seattle, Washington and acquired his first guitar at the age of 15. A self-taught musician, Hendrix moved to New York in 1964 and played with several backing bands for soul, R&B, and blues […]

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Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown

September 10th in African American History – Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown

September 10, 2005 Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, blues musician, died. Brown was born April 18, 1924 in Vinton, Louisiana. He began his professional career in 1945 and had his recording debut in 1949 with “Mary is Fine” and “My Time is Expensive”. During the 1960s, Brown made several appearances on the television show “Hee Haw” and […]

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Ethel Waters

Ethel Waters – September 1st in African American History

a href=”http://todayinafricanamericanhistory.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/Ethel-Waters.jpg” target=”_blank”> September 1, 1977 Ethel Waters, blues and jazz vocalist and actress, died. Waters was born on October 31, 1896 in Chester, Pennsylvania. She began to sing professionally in 1913 in Baltimore, Maryland. For several years she toured on the Black vaudeville circuit. In 1921, Waters became the fifth Black woman to make […]

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