Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Quicksilver fingers

Sometimes, late at night, I'll put on a record by Mississippi John Hurt in order to soothe me into a restful sleep. As with most blues singers, there's a despair and turmoil being described in many of the songs, but Hurt's voice is so gentle and comforting, and his guitar playing twists and twinkles, until, finally, the predominant feeling is of a softened joy.

This clip has a lovely, hesitant introduction in the days before television sanded off the edges of a performance and became a slicker vehicle. A simple song, yes, but you try playing it!


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