Blues News

Mississippi Fred McDowell – Video of The Week

Mississippi Fred McDowell – Video of The Week

McDowell. Originally hailing from Rossville, Tennessee, he later locates himself in the great state of Mississippi in the late 20’s. Where he works and performs at local events and gatherings. After his discovery by Alan Lomax and Shirley Collins in 1959 amidst new interest in blues and folk music, he enjoys a steady career until his death in 1972.

Though some often associate him with the Delta blues, he’s actually a pioneer of the hill country blues of Northern Mississippi and is a major influence on both Junior Kimbrough and R.L. Burnside.  

Mississippi Fred McDowell is a highly influential figure in the Folk Music period of the 1960s. His style of playing is captivating, and his singing style is top of the line blues vocals. He goes virtually unknown in the early years of his career, but in the 60s he is rediscovered to work his magic once more.

He’s truly the real deal when it comes country hills blues! Here’s a glimpse of history that most of us would never know, except indirectly. Just a musician playing for tips at night while working as a farmhand during the day. Who gets discovered by Alan Lomax and his life completely changes. 

Good Morning Little School Girl 

“Good Morning Little School Girl” is a standard blues song that has been a cover for many artists! Everyone from Sonny Boy Williamson, The Yardbirds, Johnny Lang, Johnny Winter, Muddy Waters, and even the Grateful Dead! Even though I love all the different versions of this song, I’m a fan of the Mississippi Fred McDowell’s version.

You Gotta Move From the Classic African American Gospel From Smithsonian Folkways. Although this song is often a credit nod to Fred McDowell, It’s first recorded by the Two Gospel Keys in 1946. Later redone by Mississippi Fred McDowell, whose version inspires the Rolling Stones’ cover

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