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Tuesday 5 January 2016

Not the Blues Collection - Charles Caldwell

I still have a few of the Blues Collection CDs to share with  you and have made it one of my New Year's Resolutions so to do.
Not today however. We have some blues but not from The Blues Collection but rather from Fat Possum records.
Charles Caldwell was yet another one of those elderly Bluesmen that Matthew Johnson of Fat Possum succeeded in discovering and sharing with a wider audience.
Charles Caldwell was from near Coffeeville in the Mississippi Hill Country and had been playing Blues from a teenager whilst working in an industrial plant in Grenada, Mississippi.

A quote from Johnson upon "discovering" Caldwell in 2002
 Just ten or twelve years ago, you could go into a town of 800 and find at least three old guys who could play some guitar. Now it’s hard to find anyone who plays at all, much less anyone really good. And the good players still living lose half their ability as a result of strokes and other illnesses or having been scared into joining the church. Everything in this business is in short supply: our budget, the number of good artists, the time they have left.
But seeing Charles Caldwell play changed everything for me. He still enjoyed playing; he was charismatic; he had a presence. In my view, Charles would be the next bomb, a last, undiscovered bastion of a dying breed. Did he want to make a record? Hell yes.

Sadly Charles Caldwell died in September 2003 at the age of 60.His only album Remember Me was released posthumously on 24th February 2004.


  1. It's tragic to think about just how many great blues musicians died under-appreciated or unrecorded. Fat Possum did a great job. I was lucky enough to see Junior Kimbrough in 1996 and would love to have seen T-Model Ford or R.L. Burnside.

  2. Two very good tracks today. Well done.

  3. There is a distinct lack of blues in my own collection....(at which point I hang my head in shame knowing that the rest of the class are pointing and making fun of me.)

    Totally unqualified to offer any sort of meaningful opinion.