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Crossroads: The Life and Afterlife of Blues Legend Robert Johnson

by Tom Graves

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191897,294 (4.25)None
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 emphasising the effect that Johnson, said to be the greatest blues musician who ever lived, has had on modern musicians and fans of the blues.… (more)

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If you enjoy the romanticised mythology surrounding Robert Johnson, maybe this isn't for you. The book strips everything that's been said or implied about the man down to what is definitely known. The result of this is that Robert Johnson is even more of a mystery without the tall tales. It's an interesting read, with enough detail about the times in which he lived, and the people around him, to build the thread of his story into a satisfying fullness. Following the story of his influence and music in the decades after his death brings him into the present day, and ties his legacy firmly back to the origins of his music. ( )
  AngelaJMaher | Feb 17, 2021 |
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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 emphasising the effect that Johnson, said to be the greatest blues musician who ever lived, has had on modern musicians and fans of the blues.

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