1-2 Weeks
Live at the Gaslight at the Au Go Go

LIB 5114CD LIB 5114CD

"Walter E. 'Furry' Lewis was born in Greenwood, Mississippi in the 1890's. It was in Memphis in the late 1920's that Furry began recording for Vocalion and RCA Victor. When the depression hit, blues recording slowed down considerably. And as the thirties marched forward, country blues records sold less and less. Furry Lewis, like so many great bluesmen, slipped into oblivion. He made his living as a street cleaner for too many years. In the late Fifties, Sam Charters rediscovered Lewis and recorded him for Prestige. But Furry still had to make his living in the Memphis sanitary department with no means of making another career in music and with no knowledge of the social security to which he was entitled. By the late sixties, things began to stir in earnest, and his musical career took on a second life. His playing is not strictly in the Mississippi delta tradition. Aside from ragtime and Southern Tennessee blues influences, Lewis is uniquely creative unto himself. He uses the guitar in very untraditional ways, as a drum, as a second singing voice and as a walking bass. You can hear all of these techniques on this recording. This album was recorded at the Gaslight in New York City's Greenwich Village in September 1971. It was Furry's first New York appearance in well over twenty years. The occasion was this live performance that was arranged by writer Jim Nash, who had learned of Furry Lewis from Jimi Hendrix several years earlier. A justifiable analogy can be drawn between the late Hendrix and Furry. Both have used the guitar in unusual and creative ways that are outside its tradition realm, and both have proved themselves as master showmen. The set makes its CD debut with this release."