What Is The Most Expensive Black-And-White Movie Ever Made Bottleneck Slide Guitar and the History of the Blues

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Bottleneck Slide Guitar and the History of the Blues

The gloomy, haunting sound of the slide or bottleneck guitar has become increasingly popular in film soundtracks, TV commercials, and television shows. Think of the movie “Paris, Texas” and you’ll be reminded of the eerie, mournful sound of Ry Cooder’s famous accompanying score.

The slide guitar’s origins can be traced to a single-stringed instrument that originated in West Africa. This ultra-basic instrument developed into the so-called diddley bow in the United States. This is a single-stringed instrument, usually homemade, consisting of a wire stretched along a length of wood between two screws or pegs. To pluck a string while using a piece of bone, metal, or glass to determine pitch. Some double bows were made by tying a single string to the wall of a shed or house. Mississippi bluesman Lonnie Pitchford is known for displaying his double bow, which uses two nails driven into the beam that forms part of his front porch. One side of his tombstone is designed with a playable double bow.

It was in the Mississippi Delta that African influences on American music really took root. Many freed slaves immigrated to the area after the American Civil War, bringing with them their love of rhythm, dance, and easy-to-use instruments, one of which was the diddley-bow.

Many speculate that the Mississippi Delta is the birthplace of the blues. WC Handy heard the first recorded blues tune in 1895 or 1903 at a train station in Tutwiler, Mississippi. He reportedly witnessed a poor black man in tattered clothes and worn-out shoes use a knife against the strings to alter pitch while playing a guitar, much in the same way that Hawaiian guitarists use steel bars. The tune the man played was a haunting melancholy melody that impressed WC Handy.

It was during the 1890s that some of the most famous American folk blues tunes are thought to have originated from “Joe Turner Blues” and “Frankie and Johnnie.” Charley Patton is a well-known exponent of style originating from this period. His exact date of birth is unknown, but is thought to have been between 1885 and 1892. He picked up his musical skills from those around him, including Henry Sloan, a resident of Dockery Plantation in Ruleville, Mississippi. Some say Henry Sloan is actually the mysterious black slide guitarist WC Handy heard at Tutwiler train station.

It wasn’t until 1929 that Patton was discovered by HC Speer, a white scout known for auditioning prominent blues players behind his furniture store in Jackson, Mississippi. In June of that year, he recorded 14 tracks for Paramount Records, including the famous blues classics “Pony Blues,” “Banty Rooster Blues,” “Bo Weavil Blues,” “Screamin’ and Hollerin’ the Blues” and ” A Spoonful Blues”. Banty Rooster’s Pony Blues went on to sell 10,000 copies, making Patton a major Paramount star.

Another influential bluesman who recorded for Paramount Records in 1930 was Son House. His unique playing style, characterized by intense, repetitive, hypnotic rhythms, would have a huge impact on the following decades. His guitar playing is accompanied by his distinctive vocals derived from the laments and chants of the chain gangs, possibly influenced by his time in prison after his alleged killing.

No discussion of the blues and bottleneck guitar playing would be complete without mentioning Robert Johnson, perhaps the most famous of the many influential Delta bluesmen. Recording a number of landmark recordings between 1936 and 1937, his guitar skills and songwriting talents have influenced countless blues and rock artists in the decades since his untimely death at the young age of 27.

The bottleneck or slide guitar style is synonymous with the blues. This is a playing style that makes notes tremble, sound uncertain, sound like a human voice or cry. It’s a style of playing that doesn’t require any fancy or expensive equipment, so it’s instantly accessible and appealing. The slide guitar sound is instantly engaging, but it also evokes feelings of sadness and melancholy. Slide guitar is what the blues is all about.

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