McKinley Morganfield, better known as Muddy Waters, died on this day in 1983. Known as the father of Chicago blues, he´s famous for his electric output, but I´ve got a personal weakness for his early, acoustic stuff. In 1941 and ´42, Alan Lomax recorded young Muddy for the Library of Congress on the Mississippi plantation where he lived from the age of 3 until he was 28, when he finally took off for the windy city up north. In these recordings, Muddy is still highly influenced by Robert Johnson, although he never heard him play. He was shown the essentials of Johnson´s style by fellow bluesman Son House.
And in case you´re wondering how McKinley´s nickname came about, here´s the man himself: "We had a li´l shack and there was a creek - Deer Creek - come right up to the steps at the back porch. I was always playin´ in the creek and gettin´ dirty and my sisters called me Muddy Waters then." As simple as that.
Muddy Waters - I Be´s Troubled MP3
Muddy Waters - You Got To Take Sick And Die Some Of These Days MP3