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David "Honeyboy" Edwards

In the early 21st century, living links to the immortal Robert Johnson were few. After the passing of Robert Jr. Lockwood in 2006, David "Honeyboy" Edwards was generally regarded as the last of the Delta bluesmen who had actually played and traveled with Johnson himself, and with Edwards' death in Chicago in August 2011 at age 96, that last link passed into history. For much of his life, Edwards was something of an underappreciated figure, but not in his latter years -- his slashing, Delta-drenched guitar and gruff vocals were as authentic as Delta blues ever got. Edwards had it tough growing up in Mississippi, but his blues prowess (his childhood pals included Tommy McClennan and Robert Petway) impressed Big Joe Williams enough to take him under his wing. Rambling around the South, Honeyboy experienced the great Charley Patton and played often with Johnson. Musicologist Alan Lomax came to Clarksdale, Mississippi in 1942 and captured Edwards for Library of Congress-sponsored posterity. Commercial prospects for the guitarist were scant, however -- a 1951 78 for Artist Record Co., "Build a Cave" (as Mr. Honey), and four 1953 sides for Chess that laid unissued until "Drop Down Mama" turned up 17 years later on an anthology constituted the bulk of his early recorded legacy, although Edwards was in Chicago from the mid-'50s on. The guitarist met young harpist/blues aficionado Michael Frank in 1972. Four years later, they formed the Honeyboy Edwards Blues Band to break into Chicago's then-fledgling North Side club scene; they also worked as a duo (and continued to do so on occasion for many years thereafter). When Frank inaugurated his Earwig label, he enlisted Honeyboy and his longtime pals Sunnyland Slim, Big Walter Horton, Floyd Jones, and Kansas City Red to cut a rather informal album, Old Friends, as his second release in 1979. In 1992, Earwig assembled Delta Bluesman, a stunning combination of unexpurgated Library of Congress masters and then-recent performances that showed Edwards had lost none of his blues fire. He remained active up through the first decade of the 21st century, collaborating with Henry Townsend (who died in 2006), Pinetop Perkins (another legendary bluesman from Edwards' generation who died in 2011), and Lockwood on Last of the Great Mississippi Delta Bluesmen: Live in Dallas, which won the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album. David "Honeyboy" Edwards also received a lifetime achievement Grammy Award in 2010. The next year, Edwards announced his retirement due to his declining health. A month after that proclamation, David "Honeyboy" Edwards died from congestive heart failure on August 29, 2011. His first posthumous album, I'm Gonna Tell You Somethin' That I Know: Live at the G Spot, arrived in 2017. ~ Bill Dahl
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Stations Featuring
David "Honeyboy" Edwards

    All Blues

    All Blues
    9 songs

    Acoustic Blues

    Acoustic Blues
    1 song

Albums by
David "Honeyboy" Edwards

Top Songs by
David "Honeyboy" Edwards

  1.   Song
  2.   Gambling Man
  3.   Riding the Rails
  4.   Roamin' and Ramblin'
  5.   Little Boy Blue
  6.   She Worries Me All the Time
  7.   I Was in New Orleans Last Night
  8.   Talking About Little Walter
  9.   How Long
  10.   Crawling Kingsnake
  11.   Boogie Rambler
  12.   You're the One
  13.   Maxweel Street Shuffle
  14.   Louise, Louise Blues
  15.   Key to the Highway
  16.   Freight Train Tale
  17.   That's Alright
  18.   Loved Ones
  19.   Eternal Darkness
  20.   You're the One for Me
  21.   Low Down Dog
  22.   Heartache
  23.   Lightnin' Struck the Poor House
  24.   I'm a Prisoner
  25.   Mr. Freddy Blues
  26.   Apron Strings
  27.   Country Boy by Perry Townsend
  28.   I Love You Baby
  29.   Kansas City
  30.   Bad Rooster
  31.   Bumble Bee
  32.   Next Time You See Me
  33.   Lord I Got to Go
  34.   Bald Headed Woman
  35.   Anna Lee
  36.   The Woman I'm Loving
  37.   Big Fat Mama
  38.   I Feel So Good Today
  39.   Take Me in Your Arms
  40.   Banty Rooster
  41.   Ride With Me Tonight
  42.   Hambone Blues
  43.   Sad and Lonesome
  44.   Pony Blues
  45.   Catfish Blues
  46.   Ida Lou Blues
  47.   My Baby's Gone
  48.   Blue & Lonesome
  49.   Just Like Jesse James
  50.   Sweet Home Chicago
  51.   Goin' Down Slow
  52.   Drop Down Mama
  53.   Skin & Bones Blues
  54.   Trouble Everywhere I Go
  55.   I'm a Country Man
  56.   Freedom Train
  57.   Over the Seas Blues
  58.   Shake 'Em on Down
  59.   When I Came In
  60.   Interview
  61.   Further Up on the Road
  62.   Blues Like Showers of Rain
  63.   Blues Worry Me All the Time
  64.   Big Road Blues
  65.   High Water Everywhere
  66.   Lula Mae
  67.   Sweet Home Chicago/Dust My Broom
  68.   Bull Cow Blues
  69.   Standing on the Corner
  70.   Smoky Mountains
  71.   Blues, Blues
  72.   Remarks by Honeyboy Edwards
  73.   Things Have Changed
  74.   43rd Street Jump
  75.   That's All Right, I'll Be Around
  76.   Louise
  77.   I'm Going Back Home
  78.   Shufflin' the Blues Conversation
  79.   Honeyboy Speaks With Pete Welding About Robert Johnson & Tommy Johnson by Pete Welding
  80.   Don't Be so Evil
  81.   You're Gonna Miss Me
  82.   When You Get Lonesome
  83.   Strollin' Down Highway 61
  84.   Jump Out
  85.   Eyes Full of Tears
  86.   Darkness Awakes
  87.   Sometimes I Worry
  88.   Bullfrog Blues
  89.   Linda Lu
  90.   Long Tall Woman Blues
  91.   West Memphis Blues
  92.   The War Is Over
  93.   Love Me Over Slow
  94.   Angel Child