Editor: Timothy Duffy
Forward: B.B. King
Publisher: Hill Street Press
Format: Book (Hardback) + CD
Category: Music / Photography
TRACK LISTING (AUDIO HELP)
1. John Dee Holeman and Taj Mahal - Mistreated Blues
2. Captain Luke and Cool John - Chokin' Kind
3. Neal Pattman and Taj Mahal - Shortnin' Bread
4. Guitar Gabriel and Lucille Lindsey - Do You Know What it Means to Have a Friend?
5. Cootie Stark - Jigroo
6. Willa Mae Buckner - Peter Rumpkin
7. Algia Mae Hinton - When You Kill a Chicken, Save Me the Head
8. Carl Rutherford - Turn Off the Fear
9. Beverly "Guitar" Watkins - Miz Dr. Feelgood
10. Jerry "Boogie" McCain - Where You Been?
11. Essie Mae Brooks - Rain in Your Life
12. Etta Baker - Carolina Breakdown
13. Big Boy Henry - Old Bill
14. Samuel Turner Stevens - Railroadin' and Gamblin'
15. John Lee Zeigler - Goin' Away
16. Macavine Hayes - Let's Talk it Over
17. Eddie Tigner - C. C. Rider
18. Cora Mae Bryant - Cold and Rainy Day
19. George Higgs - Greasy Greens
20. Cool John Ferguson - Strollin' on the Waterfront
21. Precious Bryant - Fever
22. sol - Black Mattie
Bonus - Crickets of Pinnacle, North Carolina
Songs from the Roots of America I. Produced and recorded by Timothy Duffy, mastered by Hansel Creech. Artistic consultant: Taj Mahal.
Recognizing that too many artists working in Southern musical traditions—the blues, R&B, hillbilly music, and other increasingly popular "roots" forms—had long been either ignored or abused by mainstream record labels and music media and were living in poverty and artistic neglect as a result, the Music Maker Relief Foundation was established in 1994 to redeem past wrongs. MMRF finds these pioneers and forgotten heroes and works with them both to help meet their basic needs for food, shelter, and medical care and to nourish their souls through committing their gifts to archival tape and touring them.
Now, in Music Makers, the story comes to life through 141 stunning photographs and outstanding essays that take you to the drink houses, concert stages, church pulpits, back porches, and city sidewalks where this music lives today. The music of the South exists in these largely forgotten artists in an unbroken chain linking us to the days of slavery and to the earliest settlement of the Appalachians. Music Makers documents the living roots of a flowering tradition and what emerges is the most complete record of living roots musicians today.
Through a variety of MMRF programs, beneficiaries—all of whom must be 55 or over, earn less than $18,000 at year, and work in the Southern musical tradition—can get continuing grants for life necessities or one-time emergency relief, get financial and consulting help for touring, and acquire and maintain quality instruments. According to the Associated Press, "the atmosphere at the foundation’s five-room farmhouse is like a hip welfare agency, fundraising campaign, and jam session wrapped together." An important record of the MMRF’s stable of artists has emerged through the dynamic, grassroots work of foundation staff and volunteers Timothy Duffy, Alex Küstner, Hoppe and Mark Austin.
Since 1988, the three photographers—as natively talented as the artists they photograph—have documented MMRF artists and events. Music Makers collects 141 remarkable black-and-white photographs of these performers for the first time. Included are photos, biographies, interviews and lyrics from seventy-five artists such as Athens' own Neal Pattman, Beverly "Guitar" Watkins, Cootie Stark, Mudcat, Macavine Hayes, and Drink Small. Also included in the book is a twenty-three track, 80-minute CD of highlights from the MMRF archives created for the book and not available elsewhere.
"[Music Makers: Portraits and Songs from the Roots of America is] a fabulous project—real evidence that the music I have always loved is alive and well." – Eric Clapton
"It’s great to have this window on some under-appreciated bluesmen and women. The Music Maker Relief Foundation and Music Makers: Portraits and Songs from the Roots of America do a terrific job bringing artists such as Precious Bryant and Beverly "Guitar" Watkins to light." – Bonnie Raitt
"Music Makers: Portraits and Songs from the Roots of America clearly dispels the notion that real blues musicians are long gone. The accompanying CD is incredible, a testament to the tremendous originality and musicianship of these artists!" – Taj Mahal
"Music Makers is an essential document of roots music in America. It is alive with the voices of these great musicians, and a pure pleasure to read and ponder." – Rosanne Cash
For more information about the Music Maker Relief Foundation, visit www.musicmaker.org.