Sid Hemphill :: The Devil’s Dream: Alan Lomax’s 1942 Library of Congress Recordings

Alan Lomax didn’t know what he was in for tearing down the dirt roads of the Mississippi Hill Country in 1942. He was looking for Sid Hemphill, a multi-instrumentalist he’d one day describe as “the best musician in the world.” When Lomax found him, the “boar-hog musician of the hills,”   he was surprised to learn that the fiddle man and string band leader was blind. Not that it mattered. “His face blazed with inner light,” Lomax writes in his 1993 book, Land Where . . .

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