Skip James

~ Person

Wikipedia

Nehemiah Curtis "Skip" James (June 9, 1902 – October 3, 1969) was an American Delta blues singer, guitarist, pianist and songwriter. Born in Bentonia, Mississippi, United States, he died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

He first learned to play guitar from another bluesman from the area, Henry Stuckey. His guitar playing is noted for its dark, minor sound, played in an open D-minor tuning with an intricate fingerpicking technique. James first recorded for Paramount Records in 1931, but these recordings sold poorly due to the Great Depression, and he drifted into obscurity. After a long absence from the public eye, James was "rediscovered" in 1964 by three blues enthusiasts, helping further the blues and folk music revival of the 1950s and early 1960s. During this period, James appeared at several folk and blues festivals and gave live concerts around the country, also recording several albums for various record labels.

His songs have influenced several generations of musicians, being adapted or covered by Kansas Joe McCoy, Robert Johnson, Alan Wilson, Cream, Deep Purple, Chris Thomas King, Alvin Youngblood Hart, The Derek Trucks Band, Beck, Big Sugar, Eric Clapton, Lucinda Williams and Rory Block. He is hailed as "one of the seminal figures of the blues."

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Discography

Album

Year Title Rating Releases
1964 Greatest of the Delta Blues Singers 2
1964 She Lyin' 1
1966 Today! 2
1968 Devil Got My Woman 2
1994 The Complete Early Recordings of Skip James 1
2003 Hard Time Killing Floor Blues 1
2007 I'd Rather Be the Devil: The Legendary 1931 Session 1
2008 1931 Sessions 1
Skip's Piano Blues 1

Album + Compilation

Year Title Rating Releases
1990 Complete 1931 Recordings Compilation 1
1998 Blues From the Delta Compilation 1
2003 Hard Time: The Best of Skip James Compilation 1
2003 Studio Sessions: Rare and Unreleased Compilation 1
2004 Illinois Blues Compilation 1
2005 Hard Time Killin' Floor Compilation 1

Album + Live

Year Title Rating Releases
1994 Skip James Live, Volume 1 Live 1
2004 Skip James Live, Volume 2 Live 1
2004 Skip James Live, Volume 3 Live 1

Single

Year Title Rating Releases
1931 Devil Got My Woman / Cypress Grove Blues 1
1931 I'm So Glad / Special Rider Blues 1

Unspecified type

Year Title Rating Releases
Cypress Grove Blues 1
Heroes of the Blues: Very Best Of 1

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