The sky is crying (Paul Oliver on Sonny Boy Williamson II)

Posted: December 2, 2011 in Paul Oliver, Sonny Boy Williamson II

Author: Paul Oliver

Source: Jazz Monthly July 1965, p. 18-19



“FEW SINGERS in the blues field have so endeared themselves to European audiences as  did Sonny Boy Williamson—(number Two) whose death on May 25th this year was  reported by Chris Strachwitz. Sonny Boy came to Europe with the 1963 American Negro  Folk Blues Festival initiated by Horst Lippmann, little known to the average collector.
Specialists knew his remarkable early recordings for the Trumpet label of Jackson, Mississippi, one of which I played on the B.B.C. about eight years ago, and Chess had released his Down and Out Blues album on which the almost totally erroneous notes by Studs Terkel appeared to lay the beginnings of confusion about the singer which still persists. His tall, gaunt and dignified figure on the stage was the first that most collectors knew of him and his husky voice, his rich harmonica playing and perhaps above all his extraordinary sense of timing and dynamics were a revelation.”



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