The Search for Robert Johnson

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Claude Corry

Being a musician from a young age I began singing at the age of five. I have been a live performer for about thirty years and have played in many bands from covers bands to original ensembles. At twenty I began to write a lot of my own songs and still do today and have written about two hundred works.

3 thoughts on “The Search for Robert Johnson”

  1. 188 of 195 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    John Hammond Retraces RL’s Life in the Delta, January 21, 1999
    By 
    philip@volition-inc.com (the cornfields of Illinois) –

    Did Robert Johnson really sell his soul to old Scratch at the crossroads? John Hammond, Jr. explores the life and times of this legendary bluesman. Hammond, a fine blues musician himself, travels through the small towns of the Mississippi Delta and interviews several of Robert Johnson’s contemporaries and acquaintances, including Johnny Shines. Hammond even tracks down a woman who claims to have been Johnson’s wife. Most of the interviewees are in the later years, giving the documentary a living history feel. The documentary is filled with Johnson’s music, much of it performed by Hammond, in Delta settings. It is quite stirring to see Hammond playing Crossroads at the crossroads. If you are a fan of the Delta blues, this is a must have film.

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  2. 61 of 61 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    A Must Have For Any Blues Collector, December 10, 1999
    By A Customer
    If you are a fan of the blues you MUST have this tape, no question about that.
    One thing I like about this film is that it is as authentic as original. The is a marked difference in the interview segments when comparing this film with Cant You Hear The Wind Howl. In this film John Hammond Jr is interviewing the woman Robert Johnson cries out for, Annie Mae… in this film when JH Jr plays the song to her she has an expression that she hears a voice from the grave and is visibly affected by the music. In the other film she is inviewed but appearing more relaxed and prepared for discussing Robert Johnson. The corner dueling scene between John Hammond and Johnny Shines is excellent, its as close to the real thing as I will probably see.
    This is a most excellent documentary, I hope it is able to find its way to DVD, for blues fans it is a must have documentary.

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  3. 69 of 72 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    A wonderful DVD bringing together many people who at least tangentially, knew Robert Johnson., September 5, 2006
    By 
    Brian Kerecz (PA, USA) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: The Search for Robert Johnson (DVD)
    This DVD offers a wealth of information about the life of Robert Johnson. We meet a girlfriend of Robert Johnson, who claims she knows where his actual burial ground is, and another girlfriend who had a song written about her by Robert (and who hears it for the first time on the DVD). A man is interviewed who claims to be Robert Johnson’s son, along with a birth certificate showing that in fact this may be the case. Johnny Shines talks about how they would play the game of “cutting heads” in Helena, with Robert stealing away the audience every time. We get the insight that the person who poisoned Robert Johnson’s drink admitted as such to one interviewer, after first presenting an alibi for a question which was never asked. We are also presented with three possible grave sites of Robert Johnson, though none of them can proven to be incontrovertible as such. In short, there is a lot of good information on this DVD about the enigmatic bluesman known as Robert Johnson (and pseudonyms in various other places). This DVD is clearly a window into the past which will slowly disappear as the years go on……Hammond does us all a great service by documenting Robert Johnson’s life and that of his contemporaries.

    The one complaint I would have is that at times Hammond (an excellent blues singer in his own right) himself is singing RJ’s songs, and at the bottom of the screen it will have the name of Robert Johnson along with the songs title. This may leave those with little knowledge of the blues to conclude it is actually Robert Johnson who is singing, when in fact it is not. Also, there are montages throughout the film when they will be talking about Robert Johnson while at the same time showing pictures of blacks in bars and juke joints, without saying that in fact Robert Johnson is not in the photograph, as there are only two known photographs of him, and each one of these show him alone in the picture. To the novice blues fan, they may not know this and think they are actually seeing Robert Johnson, and I think this fact should have been made clear in the film.

    Even with the above provisos, this was an excellent documentary on Robert Johnson’s life….Hammond clearly has a deep love for the blues and the early musicians of the delta.

    **** 1/2 stars.

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