Saturday, March 26, 2016

Nobody's Fault But Mine - Blind Willie Johnson

Charlie Musselwhite - Christo Redemptor

Blind Willie Johnson - Dark was the night...

In 1927, Texas gospel bluesman Blind Willie Johnson recorded "Dark Was the Night—Cold Was the Ground” with Columbia Records. He borrowed the title from an 18th century English hymn by Thomas Haweis: Dark was the night, cold was the ground on which the Lord was laid; His sweat, like drops of blood, ran down; In agony he prayed. There are no lyrics to Johnson’s piece, but the agony is clear. It’s a truly sobering piece of music, but one that perfectly encapsulates the suffering and sadness of Christ’s death. Johnson’s music, while as bluesy and raw as anything you’ll hear, stays committed to the persistent hope of Christ. Whether holding onto the promises on “God Don’t Never Change” or hopefully stomping to “Jesus Is Coming Soon,” Johnson stayed affixed to the gospel. Songs like “John the Revelator” and “Trouble Will Soon Be Over” focused on Christ’s return, a consistent theme in Johnson’s work.