Major Blues documentary to appear on the BBC—Journey To The Heart of The Blues
on September 14th at 8pm on BBC Radio.
Available worldwide and on BBC iPlayer for one month after broadcast.
Listen to the trailer featuring blues artists Linsey Alexander, Buddy Guy, Bobby Rush, Billy Branch, Giles Robson:
Giles Robson is considered by blues fans and the blues industry as one of the world’s most exciting blues harmonica players. In 2019 he was nominated for Blues Music Award In Memphis, the highest honor in the blues world, for his album Journeys To The Heart Of The Blues on Alligator/Munich Records. It features Giles, guitarist and singer Joe Louis Walker and pianist Bruce Katz.
The trio went on to win the award, making Robson one of only three British or European artists to win at the awards in its forty year history (The other two winners Peter Green and Eric Clapton).
However Giles is not from the USA, but rather from right here in the UK. The BBC’s Carrie Cooper follows him across the Atlantic Ocean to the awards in Memphis and beyond to renowned blues centers Chicago and Clarksdale Mississippi so they, themselves, can take an actual Journey To The Heart Of The Blues.
They visit Alligator Records in Chicago the world’s largest operating blues label, Historic blues sites like Sun Records, Beale Street and Stax Records in Memphis. In Clarksdale Mississippi they ponder the possible site of the mythical crossroads, where Robert Johnson allegedly sold his soul to the devil and in the deep Mississippi Delta countryside they visit the grave of the legendary harmonica player Sonny Boy Williamson.
Along the way the way they meet some of the music’s most legendary figures such as Buddy Guy, Bobby Rush and Billy Branch plus some of Blues’ younger up and coming legends such as guitarist Kick Fletcher and figureheads of the industry such as the head of the Blues Foundation Barbara Newman and Alligator Records boss Bruce Iglauer.
Giles is a great example of how the blues has become a worldwide phenomenon and during their Journey they meet musicians from as far afield as Australia, France and even Russia who have decided to dedicate their lives to the music.
With an incredible soundtrack of classic blues tracks and some of the best contemporary tunes from the artists they meet, Journey To The Heart Of the Blues is fascinating and exciting listen for music fans. It’s also proof that this dynamic and emotionally rich music is still alive and kicking in the 21st Century…. and not only in America, but across the world.
The documentary ends with Giles heading to New York to record his new album Don’t Give Up On The Blues, and he talks about the tracks and how what he has experienced has found its way into his approach to his new material.
Giles Robson has a new album coming out September 20th, Don’t Give Up On The Blues.
The documentary is produced By Carrie Cooper, Giles Robson
Coproduced by ArtHouse Jersey
Giles Robson online.