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Sat, 05.28.1910

T-Bone Walker, Musician, and Songwriter born

T-Bone Walker

T-Bone Walker was born on this date in 1910. He was a Black blues guitarist, singer, and songwriter, and one of the most influential musicians of the early 20th century.

He was born Aaron Thibeaux Walker in Linden, Texas, and was of African and Cherokee descent.  As a young man musically, Walker met and learned from legendary blues musician Blind Lemon Jefferson. Walker's recording debut was "Wichita Falls Blues"/"Trinity River Blues", recorded in 1929. His distinctive sound didn't fully develop until 1942 when Walker recorded "Mean Old World". His electric guitar solos were among the first heard on modern blues recordings and set a standard that is still followed.

Much of Walker's output was recorded from 1946–48 on Black & White Records, including 1947's "Stormy Monday Blues", with its famous opening line, "They call it stormy Monday, but Tuesday's just as bad". He followed with "T-Bone Shuffle" and "Let your hair down baby, let's have a natural ball"; both are considered blues classics.  B. B. King said "Stormy Monday" first inspired him to take up the guitar.

Throughout his career, he worked with Teddy Buckner (trumpet), Lloyd Glenn (piano), Billy Hadnott (bass), Jack McVea (tenor sax), and others. He recorded from 1950–54 for Imperial Records. Walker's T-Bone Blues was recorded over three widely separated sessions in 1955, 1956, and 1959, and finally released in 1960.

After that, Walker's career had slowed down, despite a much-hyped appearance at the American Folk Blues Festival in 1962 with Memphis Slim and others. A few critically acclaimed albums followed, such as I Want a Little Girl, and he won a Grammy in 1970 for Good Feelin’. T-Bone Walker, the first bluesman to use an amplified acoustic guitar, died on March 16, 1975, at 64. He was buried in the Inglewood Park Cemetery in Inglewood, California.

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