Rock Music Genres – Swamp Blues in the late fifties.

A bit about Swamp Blues!!

Opher's World

Slim Harpo

In the late fifties the electrification of the blues created a range of different styles emanating from different regions of the Southern States. Swamp Blues was the sound that came from Louisiana. It was called swamp blues because this was the land of the bayous and swamps along the coast out from Baton Rouge.

The sound was developed by J.D Jay Miller who distributed via Excello records. It was a laid-back, slightly muffled, echoey production based very much on the Jimmy Reed beat. Baton Rouge had close proximity to New Orleans and there is a rich flavour of Cajun, Creole and Zydeco in that earthy beat. It is very distinctive.

The leading exponents were Slim Harpo, Lightnin’ Slim, Lazy Lester and Lonesome Sundown. Even the names conjured up that lethargic, sultry heat of the Mississippi Delta. The only one I got to see was Lazy Lester a few years back. I…

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