Blues Timeline LR

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    The Beginning and End of Blues

    The music of blues began around the early 1900s and was starting to decline around the 1960s when rock and roll became more prominent.
  • The Father of Blues

    The Father of Blues
    W.C. Handy is known as the creator of blues and has one of the first recorded songs which is called "Memphis Blues".
  • Blues Uproar

    During the beginning of World War One, military mobilization exposed African Americans to blues music which grew a tremendous following.
  • Early Blues

    Blues around the 1920s was strictly instrumental until the release of Mamie Smith's song "Crazy Blues".
  • Delta Blues

    There are many forms of blues music and Delta Blues was one of the first forms to appear around the late 1920s.
  • Bessie Smith and Columbia Records

    Bessie Smith and Columbia Records
    It wasn't long after Mamie Smith's song that encouraged people and even record labels to find similar artists. Said record label, Columbia Records, found a woman named Bessie Smith who became extremely popular.
  • Blind Lemon Jefferson

    Blind Lemon Jefferson
    "Long Lonesome Blues” the first song recorded by Blind Lemon Jefferson, a prominent musician in the late 20's, became a hit in May 1926.
  • Chicago Blues

    Chicago Blues
    Chigaco Blues was a form that evolved during the Great Depression. When African Americans traveled North they typically stopped in New York and Chigaco.
  • Huddie Ledbetter aka Lead Belly

    Huddie Ledbetter aka Lead Belly
    This prominent artist was significant to the genre in the sense that he gave it a wide reach into the white population.
  • Robert Johnson

    Robert Johnson
    Despite his incredible influence and impact on blues, Johnson met his untimely end after performing a gig. Despite this, he was often known as the King of the Delta Blues.
  • Beale Street

    Beale Street
    During 1920-40, Beale Street was a launching point for Memphis Blues and many aspiring musicians such as Memphis Minnie.
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    Jump Blues

    Jump Blues evolved from the Big Band era around the Great Depression and economic hardships. It was extremely popular from 1940 to 1950.
  • King Biscuit Time

    King Biscuit Time
    This was the first radio show to air blues music and even show live blues performances.
  • The Return Home

    The Return Home
    When soldiers began coming home after the First World War, blues musical popularity increased significantly. Artists such as T-Bone Walker gained more influence.
  • Blues Rock

    Blues Rock
    Around the 1960s younger white musicians took inspiration from Delta and Chicago blues to create a heavy more amplified version of blues. One prominent group of musicians is ZZ Top.