Fred McDowell

Profile:
American 'hill country blues' singer and guitarist.
Born: January 12, 1906 in Rossville, Tennesee, USA
Died: July 3, 1972 in Memphis, Tennessee, USA (Cancer)

Also often called "Mississippi Fred McDowell".

After decades of playing for small local gatherings, McDowell was recorded in 1959 by roving folklore musicologist Alan Lomax and Shirley Collins, on their Southern Journey field-recording trip. With interest in blues and folk music rising in the United States at the time, McDowell's field recordings for Lomax caught the attention of blues aficionados and record producers, and within a couple of years, he had finally become a professional musician and recording artist in his own right. His LPs proved quite popular, and he performed at festivals and clubs all over the world.

McDowell continued to perform blues in the north Mississippi style much as he had for decades, sometimes on electric guitar rather than acoustic guitar. He was particularly renowned for his mastery of slide guitar, a style he said he first learned using a pocketknife for a slide and later a polished beef rib bone. He ultimately settled on the clearer sound he got from a glass slide, which he wore on his ring finger. While he famously declared, "I do not play no rock and roll," he was not averse to associating with younger rock musicians. He coached Bonnie Raitt on slide guitar technique and was reportedly flattered by The Rolling Stones' rather straightforward version of his "You Gotta Move" on their 1971 album Sticky Fingers.
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Albums

688 806 ZL Fred McDowell - Delta Blues album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* Delta Blues (Album) Arhoolie Records 688 806 ZL UK 1964 Sell This Version
423 249 Fred McDowell - Cotton Country Blues album art Fred McDowell Cotton Country Blues (Album) International Polydor Production 423 249 Germany 1965 Sell This Version
T-2208 Fred McDowell - My Home Is In The Delta album art Fred McDowell My Home Is In The Delta (Album) Testament Records T-2208 US 1965 Sell This Version
MSP 93003 Fred McDowell - Long Way From Home album art Fred McDowell Long Way From Home (Album) Milestone (4) MSP 93003 US 1966 Sell This Version
F 1027 Fred McDowell - Vol. 2 album art Fred McDowell Vol. 2 (Album) Arhoolie Records F 1027 US 1966 Sell This Version
TRA 194 Fred McDowell - In London, Vol.1 album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* In London, Vol.1 (Album) Transatlantic Records TRA 194 UK 1969 Sell This Version
ST-409 Fred McDowell - I Do Not Play No Rock 'N' Roll album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* I Do Not Play No Rock 'N' Roll (Album) Capitol Records ST-409 New Zealand 1969 Sell This Version
TRA 203 Fred McDowell - Mississippi Fred McDowell In London Volume Two album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* Mississippi Fred McDowell In London Volume Two (Album) Transatlantic Records TRA 203 UK 1969 Sell This Version
T-2219 Fred McDowell - Amazing Grace album art Fred McDowell With The Hunter's Chapel Singers Fred McDowell With The Hunter's Chapel Singers - Amazing Grace (Album) Testament Records T-2219 US 1969 Sell This Version
ST-409/403 Fred McDowell - I Do Not Play No Rock 'N' Roll / Broke An' Hungry album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* / Guitar Jr. Mississippi Fred McDowell* / Guitar Jr. - I Do Not Play No Rock 'N' Roll / Broke An' Hungry(LP, Album, Pic) Capitol Records ST-409/403 US 1969 Sell This Version
BLP-12017 Fred McDowell - When I Lay My Burden Down album art Fred McDowell / Furry Lewis Fred McDowell / Furry Lewis - When I Lay My Burden Down (Album) Biograph BLP-12017 US 1970 Sell This Version
RVS 1001 Fred McDowell - Eight Years Ramblin'... album art Fred McDowell And Johnny Woods Fred McDowell And Johnny Woods - Eight Years Ramblin'... (Album) Revival Records (3) RVS 1001 UK 1971 Sell This Version
OD-1 Fred McDowell - Live In New York album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* Live In New York (Album) Oblivion Records (4) OD-1 US 1972 Sell This Version
JSS-4 Fred McDowell - 1904-1972 album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* 1904-1972 (Album) Just Sunshine Records JSS-4 US 1973 Sell This Version
1068 Fred McDowell - Keep Your Lamp Trimmed And Burning album art Fred McDowell Keep Your Lamp Trimmed And Burning Arhoolie Records 1068 US 1973 Sell This Version
OJL 8051 Fred McDowell - Levee Camp Blues album art Fred McDowell Levee Camp Blues (Album) Origin Jazz Library OJL 8051 US 1980 Sell This Version
HT 302 Fred McDowell - 1962 - His First Recordings Following Discovery album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* 1962 - His First Recordings Following Discovery (Album) Heritage (2) HT 302 UK 1982 Sell This Version
RL 0053, RL0053 Fred McDowell - Standing At The Burying Ground album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* Featuring Jo Ann Kelly* Mississippi Fred McDowell* Featuring Jo Ann Kelly* - Standing At The Burying Ground (Album, Comp) Red Lightnin', Red Lightnin' RL 0053, RL0053 UK 1984 Sell This Version
KC 107 Fred McDowell - Shake 'Em On Down 1959 album art Fred McDowell Shake 'Em On Down 1959(LP, Mono) K.C. Records KC 107 France 1988 Sell This Version
C304 Fred McDowell - Delta Blues album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* Delta Blues(Cass) Arhoolie Records C304 US 1989 Sell This Version
Rounder CD 1718 Fred McDowell - The First Recordings album art Fred McDowell The First Recordings Rounder Records Rounder CD 1718 US 1997 Sell This Version
80348 Fred McDowell - Mama Says I'm Crazy album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* & Johnny Woods Mississippi Fred McDowell* & Johnny Woods - Mama Says I'm Crazy(CDr, Advance, Album) Fat Possum Records, Anti- 80348 US 2002 Sell This Version
CD001 Fred McDowell - Come And Found You Gone (The Bill Ferris Recordings) album art Mississippi Fred McDowell* Come And Found You Gone (The Bill Ferris Recordings)(CD) Devil Down Records CD001 US 2010 Sell This Version
DOY653LP Fred McDowell - Lord Have Mercy album art Fred McDowell Lord Have Mercy (Album) Doxy DOY653LP Europe 2011 Sell This Version
MR-074, DS032 Fred McDowell - The Alan Lomax Recordings album art Fred McDowell The Alan Lomax Recordings (Album) Mississippi Records, Domino Sound MR-074, DS032 US 2011 Sell This Version