Memphis Minnie

I recently read this excellent book written by Garth Cartwright that I thoroughly recommend, you can read an extract here, in short a musical road trip through the US in which the author meets some lesser known musical heroes and heroines, well lesser known to me that is and that’s really what prompted this post. As much as I liked to think I have a decent grounding in popular music history in truth my knowledge only scratches the surface, so reading the book I came across a few names that were new to me or as in this case I’d heard the name but couldn’t recall a single tune, I’d already learnt from the book a few basics, including what appears to be the most cited fact that When the Levee Breaks a 1929 Memphis Minnie and Kansas Joe McCoy song was covered by Led Zeppelin and used by Bob Dylan for his The Levee’s Gonna Break track from the Modern Times album, in fact the list of covers is quite extensive.

Kansas Joe & Memphis Minnie – When the Levee Breaks

I guess I could cut / paste and edit to my hearts content with her story, but given I’ve done my research with a mouse, keyboard and Google I’ll let you do the same and merely thank the other folks for the enlightening articles and point you to a selection that I came across that paint a picture of this remarkable woman.

Memphis Minnie – Guitar Queen

Memphis Minnie brings it to Beale Street

Memphis Minnie Delta Boogie

The mother of electric blues guitarists

Recommend listening, including some 78 rips from Memphis Minnie @

eMusic has a host of albums to check out, I’ve downloaded some selected tracks from the Complete Recorded Works Series and plan another raid on subscription renewal.

Memphis Minnie on Hypem

Amazon has a few expensive looking books, I’ll be doing some more research before parting with any cash and a double CD which I’ve added to my Wish List.

The title of the book, well that comes from a familiar source to me, the title of a Alejandro Escovedo album, the words taken from the opening track Last to Know.

Alejandro Escovedo – Last To Know

Buy Alejandro Escovedo at Amazon

Download Alejandro Escovedo at iTunes

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