C.C. Rider the Venerator: David “Honeyboy” Edwards

David “Honeyboy” Edwards was the last of the old guard blues players. He was from Shaw, Mississippi. Was inspired to play guitar at age 14 by watching Tommy Johnson—the man who wrote "Big Road Blues" and "Canned Heat"—work his guitar...

This is the latest from The Bluesmobile’s C.C. Rider, who spends her life venerating the founding fathers of the blues. She’s walked the crooked highways of this singing country to resurrect the voices of the past. With the dirt of the Delta on her hands, she sleeps in the shadow of the giants on whose shoulders popular music now stands.

David “Honeyboy” Edwards

(June 28, 1915 – August 29, 2011)

David “Honeyboy” Edwards was the last of the old guard blues players. He was from Shaw, Mississippi. Was inspired to play guitar at age 14 by watching Tommy Johnson—the man who wrote “Big Road Blues” and “Canned Heat”—work his guitar.

Once he started playing, Honeyboy performed on the street a while, and then hooked up with another wandering musician.One Robert Johnson. They became close friends, playing and hanging together.

Honeyboy was there the night Robert Johnson died. Honeyboy was there for it all. And he learned from watching, cause he met and played with so many of the originators.

Honeyboy started touring as a young kid, following Big Joe Williams on the blues circuit. And was first recorded by folklorist Alan Lomax for the Library of Congress during World War 2. And he kept at it through his 90s.

Here’s a song Honeyboy Edwards recorded in the 1950’s, but wasn’t released till much later. “Drop Down Mama.”

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