Letter Confirms Robert Johnson's Texas RecordingsBreaking News
Blues fans have long thought Johnson recorded 13 songs in 1937 in a building two blocks east of Dallas City Hall. The building was home to Brunswick Records at the time, but there was no known documentation to confirm where the recordings took place.
That was until San Diego blues enthusiast Tom Jacobson tracked down a 1961 letter unlocking the mystery.
In the letter, the producer of the recordings, Don Law, wrote that the session took place in a makeshift studio at the Brunswick Records office _ a three-story building now owned by a drink distribution company.
Johnson died 18 months after the recordings at age 27, but his music lived on and was hugely influential on 1960s musicians like Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin.
"It's just an incredible document," Jacobson told The Dallas Morning News for its Monday editions. "It's an important piece of Americana about a musical genius."
Law was the only producer to record Johnson, including another session in San Antonio eight months before the Dallas recordings. Law died 23 years ago.
Jacobson donated the letter to the Library of Congress in December. It also includes information about other Johnson tales, like the night in San Antonio that he asked Law for money to pay a prostitute, and how he was so secretive about his guitar technique that he would face the wall while playing when other musicians were present.
Jacobson found the letter in the New York City basement of Frank Driggs, a former Columbia Records employee who wrote the liner notes for the 1961 release of Johnson's music, "King of the Delta Blues."
Michael Taft, the head of folk culture archives at the Library of Congress, said the letter and recording site are important because so little is known about Johnson's life.
"It's a big deal for us," he said. "To finally be able to say this is the building he recorded in, that's a way of bringing Robert Johnson back to life."
comments powered by Disqus
- Rubio Surges Into Second In New Hampshire
- Branstad Says Cruz Ran ‘Unethical’ Campaign
- Christie Highlights Santorum’s Endorsement of Rubio
- Portman Comes Out Against Trade Deal
- Megyn Kelly Gets a Book Deal
- A Big List of the Bad Things Clinton Has Done
- An Unambiguous Sign Sanders Won Last Night’s Debate
- Still Friends at the End
- Quote of the Day
- Trump Still Leads as Clinton Slips
- Clinton Can’t Shake Image as Wall Street’s Friend
- Maddow Doesn’t See Sanders Winning
- Why Does the Media Still Shield Chelsea Clinton?
- Bush Jokes His Mother May Have Abused Him
- Rubio Closes the Gap in New Hampshire
- Transcribed Document: Soviet Politburo Discussed CIA Billion Dollar Spy Adolf Tolkachev
- Pentagon withholds Iraq War photos showing detainee abuse
- These Rebels Have Amassed A Library From Syria’s Ruins
- Was 1916 fire at Canadian Parliament set by German saboteur?
- United Nations Calls On U.S. To Pay African Americans Reparations For Slavery
- Juan Cole says America’s inclination to turn to the military started with Manifest Destiny
- History Jobs Drop
- Paul Krugman gives credence to Robert J. Gordon's pessimism about American economic growth
- Harvard President Drew Faust Condemns Free Tuition Proposal from Outsider Overseers Ticket
- Andrew Roberts says Trump is the Mussolini of America with double the vulgarity