Commentary

The 10 Texas Blues Albums You Must Hear Before You Die

Watching the Devil tune his guitar in the middle of the night isn't how Robert (or Tommy) Johnson imagined he'd be spending his Saturday night. When that ol' demon started playing songs, fire flew from his fingertips as an otherworldly sound reverberated into the night. According to legend, despite his guitar exploding, Johnson quickly made a deal, sold his soul and became one of the godfathers of the blues.

Since Johnson's meeting at the Crossroads, Delta blues roots have developed into distinctive styles: Chicago blues, an acoustic guitar and harmonica-based Delta blues sound; Memphis blues, a guitar-based blues that transformed into jug bands; gospel blues, a combination of blues guitar and evangelistic lyrics; and Texas blues, a distinctive sound relying exclusively on the guitar but sometimes big band music will creep into the mix.

See also: -The 10 Heavy Metal Albums You Must Hear Before You Die -The 15 Best Songs From the Past 15 Years of Texas Country/Red Dirt

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Christian McPhate is an award-winning journalist who specializes in investigative reporting. He covers crime, the environment, business, government and social justice. His work has appeared in several publications, including the Dallas Morning News, the Fort Worth Star Telegram, the Miami Herald, San Antonio Express News and The Washington Times.