A Regional Experience

by Bob Eagle and Eric S. LeBlanc
Norm Cohen, Advisory Editor


The blues in the United States dates back to about 1920.

Print Flyer
Cover image for Blues

May 2013


Pages 598
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Popular Culture/Music and Performing Arts

Examining the blues genre by region, and describing the differences unique to each, make this a must-have for music scholars and lay readers alike.

A melding of many types of music such as ragtime, spiritual, jug band, and other influences came together in what we now call the blues. Blues: A Regional Experience is the most comprehensive and up-to-date reference book of blues performers yet published, correcting many errors in the existing literature.

Arranged mainly by ecoregions of the United States, this volume traces the history of blues from one region to another, identifying the unique sounds and performers of that area. Each section begins with a brief introduction, including a discussion of the region's culture and its influence on blues music. Chapters take an in-depth look at blues styles from the following regions: Virginia and the tidewater area, Carolinas and the Piedmont area, the Appalachians and Alabama, the Mississippi Delta, Greater Texas, the Lower Midwest, the Midwest, the Northeast, and California and the West. Biographical sketches of musicians such as B.B. King and T-Bone Walker include parental data and up-to-date biographical information, including full names, pseudonyms, and burial place, when available. The work includes a chapter devoted to the Vaudeville era, presenting much information never before published. A chronology, selected artists' CD discography, and bibliography round out this title for students and music fans.


    • Demonstrates the extensive contributions of African Americans to American music and culture
    • Supplies chapters on regions that include entries on the lives and contributions of individual blues musicians in particular areas of the United States, painting a colorful "map" of the development of blues music
    • Draws upon extensive archival research, such as Social Security death records, to establish fundamental facts and correct myths concerning blues musicians
Author Info

Bob Eagle is an independent scholar in Australia. He initiated work on what is now the Encyclopedia of Blues and Gospel Music.

Eric S. LeBlanc is an instructor at the Victoria Conservatory of Music in Canada.



"Blues: A Regional Experience should be purchased by every library and by every blues researcher."Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association

"A valuable reference book for any blues researcher and an interesting approach to rethinking arbitrary categories."Living Blues

"A Selected Artists CD discography and a bibliography complete the offer. It is difficult to imagine that anyone can possibly write seriously about blues in the future without this book at their elbow. It's an absolute classic and absolutely indispensable."Names and Numbers

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