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Author Topic: Legends of the Blues by William Stout  (Read 605 times)

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Offline dj

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Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« on: July 18, 2013, 12:53:25 PM »
Remember R. Crumb's Heroes of the Blues trading card set that Yazoo put out back in 1980, and which were collected in a book in 2006 with his later sets of Jazz and Country cards as R. Crumb's Heroes of Blues, Jazz, and Country?  Well apparently that book sold well enough that the publisher wanted more, but Crumb didn't want to do any more.   Crumb recommended William Stout for the job, and now we have Legends of the Blues, 100 more portraits of blues artists, with only two (Skip James and Blind Willie Johnson) repeated from Crumb's cards. 

The format is very similar to Crumb's cards/book: Heavily lined cartoons based on photos of the artists depicted, with an essay about the artist on the page facing his/her picture.  The essays are longer than Crumb's, and include lists of recommended tracks, interesting covers, and, usually, a piece of trivia at the end.  The book contains quite a few "classic" women singers, and also quite a few artists who worked in an urban electric idiom, R&B, and even brushed up against rock & roll, though everyone covered was born before 1930, so there's no one really modern in there. 

The book is just fine if you like this kind of stuff, though I have a few quibbles: It looks like someone smacked Henry Thomas in the side of the head with a skillet, Stout couldn't resist going over the top with Robert Johnson (skulls for pupils in his eyes and half the essay is taken up with the Devil at the crossroads story), and the Big Joe Williams picture is not one of Big Joe at all but rather of the Joe Williams who sang with Count Basie in the late 40s.  But it's not a book to be taken too seriously, it's meant for casual fun.  And casual fun it is.

Offline thickpete

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2013, 01:39:35 PM »
William Stout is a national treasure - he did the covers for many of the best bootleg lps back when..... :)

Offline CF

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2013, 01:46:17 PM »
 . . . He drew the wrong Joe Williams??? How the hell does that happen?  ::)
Stand By If You Wanna Hear It Again . . .

Offline dj

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2013, 01:50:08 PM »
It's incredibly easy in the internet age.  I imagine he googled images of Joe Williams and not Big Joe Williams.

Offline CF

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2013, 06:10:37 PM »
So I guess Mr. Stout is not a fan of the genre, eh?
Stand By If You Wanna Hear It Again . . .

Offline Rivers

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #5 on: July 18, 2013, 06:14:02 PM »
Quote
(skulls for pupils in his eyes and half the essay is taken up with the Devil at the crossroads story) and the Big Joe Williams picture is not one of Big Joe at all but rather of the Joe Williams who sang with Count Basie in the late 40s

Wow, sounds completely non-indispensable! :) I like the other Joe Williams BTW, great voice. This book could appreciate in value down the track, in the same way that postage stamps and currency bills with errors become collectable.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2013, 06:22:27 PM by Rivers »

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2013, 05:14:16 AM »
Somewhere I have a crappy import CD of Big Joe Williams with a photo of Basie's Joe Williams on the cover. So it's not the first time.

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2013, 05:24:31 AM »
Somewhere I have a crappy import CD of Big Joe Williams with a photo of Basie's Joe Williams on the cover. So it's not the first time.
May these "oddities" should be sent to Stefan to be included here http://www.wirz.de/music/odditfrm.htm

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Legends of the Blues by William Stout
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2013, 06:10:53 AM »
Ah, there you go, that's the one: Blues from the South Side in the Golden Legends series. Maybe I'll put it on ebay, WOW!! RARE ORIGINAL COVER, BIDDING STARTS AT JUST $100. NO RESERVE!!

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