August 9, 2012
Benoit's blues history lesson
The Beat has paid attention enough to know the names of "original" blues artists and their importance to American music history and cultural history -- names like Son House, Robert Johnson, Big Bill Broonzy, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Bessie Smith. We admit to not being as well-versed as many hardcore fans of this music, but, you know, we're kinda interested in music of all forms, so we've paid attention and tried to heed our lessons.
When we interviewed Blues siner/guitarist/songwriter Tab Benoit, we got another. Perhaps it should have been obvious, but we guess it wasn't, at least to us. So we share with you, just in case.
If you read our print piece (and please, do so here if you haven't), you read that Benoit eschews looking back on his own work in favor of woprking on what comes next. This led to a conversation regarding the idea that, nowadays, the blues isn't throught of as a songwriter's genre, but rather more often an instrumentalist's, and secondarily, a singer's. Blues guitarist, blues harpist, blues, singer... like that. We'll let Benoit pick up the narrative from there.