Screaming Guitar and Howling Piano? (Part 1)

Muddy Waters’s 1958 UK tour is one of the landmark events in the history of blues in Britain. In this post, I offer a brief glimpse into a paper I’ll be giving on 16 July at Continental Drift: 50 Years of Jazz from Europe, at Edinburgh Napier University.

It’s been a long time without an update! My previous post was made all the way back in October, before I took up a research fellowship at the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC. The fellowship was productive, stimulating, and incredibly immersive – so much so that I easily spent several months in the Library, six days a week…and still not find time to keep my blog updated.

Being back in the UK is a big change. It feels like I’ve skipped out the first half of 2016, and I still find myself realising that I’m doing something for the first time this year (first proper bacon sandwich, first hill walk, first Sunday roast, etc). So my ‘new year’s’ resolution will be to make sure that I keep this blog updated more often! Look out in the coming weeks/months for more posts on research I conducted in the USA, and the work I’m currently doing back on this side of the Atlantic.

Something I’m excited to be able to share is some recent research I’ve been doing on the first UK tour of Chicago blues musician Muddy Waters, who played a series of concerts across Britain with his regular pianist Otis Spann in Autumn 1958. I’ll be giving a presentation about this research on 16 July at Continental Drift: 50 Years of Jazz From Europe, a conference organised between Edinburgh Napier University and the Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival. There’s a lot more on this to come over the Summer, but here is a brief promotional video I’ve made about my paper, and about why I think events like Continental Drift are so important:


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