Francis "Scrapper" Blackwell (1903-1962) ranks as one of the major players in the history of blues guitar. Through his work with singer-pianist Leroy Carr--particularly on the massive 1928 hit "How Long, How Long Blues"--Blackwell helped fashion a new sound for the blues suited to rural-to-urban move of much of the music's African-American constituency.
T-Bone Walker, who continued this evolutionary process in the 1940s, cited Blackwell as a main musical hero. Blackwell retired from music shortly after Carr's death in 1935 but was rediscovered in Indianapolis in 1958. This marvelous 1960 recording not only shows him to be in first-rate form as a guitarist and singer but also finds him playing some fine piano. Sadly, Blackwell's comeback was cut short by his death the following year.
Goin' Where the Monon Crosses The Yellow Dog, Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out, "A" Blues, Little Girl Blues, George Street Blues, Blues Before Sunrise, Little Boy Blue, "E" Blues, Shady Lane, Penal Farm Blues