Posted by themusicsover on August 14, 2010
Big Bill Broonzy
June 26, 1898 – August 14, 1958
Big Bill Broonzy was a popular blues singer and guitarist whose career ran from the early ’20s until his death in the late ’50s. First playing country blues to black audiences in and around his hometown in Arkansas, Broonzy moved to Chicago in the early ’20s and began playing a more polished urban blues, eventually attracting a white audience. As a composer, he was very prolific, with over 300 songs or adaptations to his name. He stayed very busy recording and touring through the ’30s and ’40s, but by the ’50s, his career ran stale and he considered retiring from music. But with the birth of the folk revival, Broonzy’s traditional songs were back in fashion and he found success touring with the likes of Pete Seeger, Lead Belly, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee. He died of throat cancer at the age of 60.