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At The Crossroads As Robert Johnson Centennial Nears

Robert Johnson remains the man most broadly considered the preeminent bluesman of all time, a reputation that grows only more solid as the 100th anniversary of his birth in Hazlehurst, Miss., approaches on May 8.

Before Johnson came along, others were playing the Delta blues. Artists such as Patton, Brown and House were major influences on him. But Johnson’s hauntingly expressive, high-pitched voice, the sophistication of themes and lyrics in his songs and a technical mastery of the acoustic guitar that still has musicians scratching their heads in wonder all helped elevate him above his musical predecessors, peers and descendants.

Read more at the Los Angeles Times.