Monday, November 23, 2009
Today’s song is not about gardening! It’s Charlie Patton’s song about a branch line off the Yazoo & Mississippi Valley Railroad—the branch ran from Dockery Plantation to Boyle, while the mainline ran from Memphis to New Orleans. A number of famous bluesmen have been associated with the Dockery Plantation, not only Patton, but also Robert Johnson, John Lee Hooker & Howlin’ Wolf. The Clarksdale, Mississippi depot on this line has been converted to a blues museum, & the Peavine has its own marker on the Mississippi Blues Trail (see pic at top). In addition to Patton’s song, the line is celebrated in Robert Johnson’s “Travelling Riverside Blues.” Charlie Patton was one of the early bluesmen—he was born in 1891 & died at age 42 in 1934. Along the way, he left quite an impressive legacy: 56 songs recorded at four recording sessions from 1929 thru 1934, & some of these, like “Pony Blues,” “Moon Goin’ Down,” “Peavine Blues” & “Screamin’ & Hollerin’ the Blues” (to name just a few) are standards of the Mississippi Delta style. His own playing & singing are very memorable—a growling baritone voice & amazing drive on the guitar.
In other news: don’t forget to stop by Eberle’s brand new blog, Platypuss-in-Boots, which is celebrating its kick-off at 8:00 a.m. Mountain Time today; her wonderful stories will be enjoyed by “kids from one to 92” as the old song goes—maybe even older than 92! & hope you enjoy the song.