bluesBooks about music can be a challenge as you are reading about something that you want to be listening to. However, a really good book about music can inform and enhance the listening experience and the appreciation of the art form. Such is the case with the wonderful book, The Blues: A Visual History by Mike Evans. Not only does Mr. Evans bring us a great history of the true American musical genre, he presents it with illustrations that also tell the story and the result is fantastic.

About The Blues: A Visual History by Mike Evans: “Originating in the African-American communities of the Deep South in the late nineteenth century, the blues gave birth to jazz, R&B, rock, punk, and country. From the impassioned slide guitar of the Mississippi Delta, to the electric sounds of Chicago’s street corners, to the improvised jams of blues- rock, The Blues explores the many forms this quintessentially American music has taken. All the great pioneers are here, including Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Bessie Smith, and John Lee Hooker, along with the many musicians they influenced who put their own unique spin on the genre. As well as tracing the evolution of the blues through its various styles, this musical journey features profiles of no fewer than fifty key artists—including fact files with biographical information, recording histories and more.”

To have a true appreciation of the blues is to have a real understanding of American social and popular culture of the past century, which makes The Blues: A Visual History a history book not just a book about art.

The Blues: A Visual History by Mike Evans is available from Amazon and other fine book retailers.