Mississippi John Hurt – 1928 Sessions
This is quite possibly one of the most important collections of recorded music in the history of important collections of recorded music. I honestly don’t know how to describe how influential these performances have been, and continue to be. Not just in my life, but in the lives of thousands upon thousands of others as well.
For my part, it’s no exaggeration to say that the direction my life has taken over the last three decades has been shaped in no small part by the mere fact of this album. I first heard Louis Collins when I was 16 years old. I’ll be playing it on stage this weekend. I’ve loved it for that long.
Every time I pick up a guitar, I am in essence picking up this album. My fingers learned to move to the music of Mississippi John Hurt. My whole understanding of how to play guitar, or how to deliver a song, comes from this man’s music.
There is so much I could say about Mississippi John Hurt. His influence, the effect he’s had on me, and so many, is truly extraordinary. At some point before this year of album recommendations is over, we’ll probably talk about every recording he ever made. But for today, let’s start at the beginning.