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Book details
  • Genre:BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY
  • SubGenre:Composers & Musicians
  • Language:English
  • Pages:133
  • eBook ISBN:9781617929144

Crossroads

The Life and Afterlife of Blues Legend Robert Johnson

by Tom Graves

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Overview
The result of careful research, this stylish biography of infamous blues musician Robert Johnson reveals the real story behind the mythical talent that made him a musical legend. According to some, Robert Johnson learned guitar by trading his soul away to the Devil at a crossroads in rural Mississippi. When he died at age 27 of a mysterious poisoning, many superstitious fans came to believe that the Devil had returned to take his due. This diligent study of Johnson’s life debunks these myths, while emphasizing the effect that Johnson, said to be the greatest blues musician who ever lived, has had on modern musicians and fans of the blues. Since its publication in 2008, Crossroads has been hailed by critics and blues fans alike as the definitive biography of this most elusive of American icons.
Description
The result of careful research, this stylish biography of infamous blues musician Robert Johnson reveals the real story behind the mythical talent that made him a musical legend. According to some, Robert Johnson learned guitar by trading his soul away to the Devil at a crossroads in rural Mississippi. When he died at age 27 of a mysterious poisoning, many superstitious fans came to believe that the Devil had returned to take his due. This diligent study of Johnson’s life debunks these myths, while emphasizing the effect that Johnson, said to be the greatest blues musician who ever lived, has had on modern musicians and fans of the blues. Since its publication in 2008, Crossroads has been hailed by critics and blues fans alike as the definitive biography of this most elusive of American icons. "Anyone who is aware of Robert Johnson's contribution to blues and rock music will want this book. It is as true a picture of the man as we will ever have." —Blues Society of Tulsa "The book you hold in your hands is perhaps the most accurate recital of the facts of the life of Little Robert Leroy Johnson, the King of Spades, The King of the Delta Blues Singers that you’re likely to come across for many years to come..." --Steve LaVere "Crossroads is well researched, informative and easy to read. . . . An enjoyable read that separates the man from the myth." —Blues Review magazine "Graves applies the lively narration of music journalism to this brief biography of Delta blues guitarist Robert Johnson." —Book News Inc. "The most complete and accurate book so far on Robert Johnson . . . an interesting and absorbing book that not only will be of interest to new fans, but will fill in some gaps for longtime fans." —Blues Bytes online magazine "Graves' study is well researched and entertaining, and worth a read by anyone interested in Johnson and his remarkable legacy." —Dirty Linen magazine "This short book is an interesting study . . . of Robert Johnson's life but also in the legends surrounding his life and death. Graves is adept at retelling the facts." —BluesWax "Graves'. . . aim in this brief but handy clearinghouse of a book is to separate fact from fiction and set the record straight, a job even Johnson's friends in the 1930s had trouble doing." —Memphis magazine
About the author
Tom Graves is the former editor of Rock & Roll Disc magazine and now teaches at LeMoyne-Owen College in Memphis. He is the author of the novel Pullers as well as the nonfiction eBooks My Afternoon With Louise Brooks, The Men With the Golden Ears: The Geniuses of the Digital Remastering Age, In the Midnight Aisle: The Story of the Blackwood Brothers Quartet, Blonde Shadow: The Brief Career and Mysterious Disappearance of Actress Linda Haynes, and Natural Born Elvis: The Story of Bill Haney, the First Elvis Impersonator. Graves has also written numerous articles for publications ranging from Rolling Stone to The New York Times. He can be reached through his web site at: www.tom-graves.com.
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