17 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The title of this album is to be taken literally. With his haunted pipes and astonishingly fluid fingers, Robert Johnson became the definitive Delta bluesman forevermore, thanks to the songs he recorded in 1936–37. Tunes like “Cross Road Blues” and “Walkin’ Blues” became standards of both blues and rock, but there will never be anything like the originals. When you hear Johnson’s almost otherworldly moan and bewitching fretwork, the old myth about him making a deal with the Devil for his talent doesn’t seem so far-fetched.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The title of this album is to be taken literally. With his haunted pipes and astonishingly fluid fingers, Robert Johnson became the definitive Delta bluesman forevermore, thanks to the songs he recorded in 1936–37. Tunes like “Cross Road Blues” and “Walkin’ Blues” became standards of both blues and rock, but there will never be anything like the originals. When you hear Johnson’s almost otherworldly moan and bewitching fretwork, the old myth about him making a deal with the Devil for his talent doesn’t seem so far-fetched.

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