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Putumayo's Latest: African Blues

Read on for a chance to win a 6-CD set from Putumayo’s blues and African titles. Dan Storper is the CEO and Founder of Putumayo World Music.

The blues has long been about storytelling, about raising a voice from the margins and edges of American life. As it spread from the Deep South to Chicago and beyond, the blues incorporated a powerful musical groove that has influenced music around the world.

Now, musicians are reaching across the Atlantic and finding that they have a common story to tell in shades of blue. Putumayo’s African Blues, now available in most Whole Foods Market® stores, chronicles the return of the blues to its African motherland.

It also demonstrates the burgeoning connections between West and East African musicians and performers from the blues’ traditional heartland in the US, as well as converts in Europe — and shows how these connections are revolutionizing traditions on both continents. Taj Mahal, together with the Culture Musical Club of Zanzibar, gets down and deep in a slow-burning meditation on the beauties of Dhow Countries. Mali’s Issa Babayogo brings his characteristic, sparkling knack for gritty, melodic grooves.

The ever-evolving Playing for Change band — this time featuring hip desert rockers Tinariwen and Keb Mo — reveals how globally malleable a good old 12-bar blues can be. For me, it’s like two halves of a circle. The blues’ roots are in Africa but emerged and evolved as a powerful musical style in America. Now they’re reuniting in new and exciting ways. When we worked on Mali to Memphis, we recognized the powerful connection between the bluesy music of West Africa and the Mississippi Delta.

That began my search for American and African blues and blues-influenced music and led to a series of successful CDs including Mississippi Blues, American Blues and Blues Around the World. Putumayo will contribute $5,000 from sales of African Blues to the International Rescue Committee in support of their humanitarian work helping refugees to survive and rebuild their lives. For more information, visit www.rescue.org.

Are you a blues enthusiast too? Got a favorite blues band or artist? Tell us in the comments below for a chance to win a 6-CD set from Putumayo’s African and Blues series. Comment by May 17th for a chance to win. We’ll choose one comment at random to receive the CDs.

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224 comments

Comments

calleen says …

Love chicago blues, Big Twist and the Mellow Fellows, yea 1980's.

Kevin Baker says …

How can you top B. B. King's performance on Live At The Regal?

Adrin Smith says …

I love the blues. One of my favorites has to be Keb Mo.

Nick says …

Pita mayo

Michelle Luna says …

Blind Willie Johnson

Alicia A says …

love blues music...wonderful to hear.

Susanne says …

My favorite is Taj Mahal. He is a great live performer and no two shows are ever the same!

Amy O. says …

The blues resonates in your soul. Whether you've felt what they're singing about or not. When you're listening, you can feel their emotions. Sometimes it makes you sad, sometimes happy. But the most important thing is that you FEEL.

ev says …

Love Americana blues and would love to expand my worldly blues by adding African blues to my knowledge base. Looking forward to my 6 cd set-yay!!! Many thanks

Leah says …

I have some of these artists' CDs already and would love to add to my collection,

Ken says …

Putumayo is the best! Every new CD is a treat...

Jennifer says …

I've always loved to blues; B. B. King is a classic favorite. There are so many others though! I would live to add this to our collection; we love world music and homeschool our kids. So, any music we acquire becomes part of our music appreciation class as well; the boys would love this!

melanie gonzalez says …

Grew up in Chicago so love the old Blues singers; Howlin Wolf, Muddy Waters, Paul Butterfield Band, Siegel-Schwall. Would really enjoy this collection. Thanks for the offer!

Darren Weiner says …

My kids love Putumayo! They enjoy listening to the blues CDs at WFM.

Kiersten Lednik says …

I love Putumayo!!!! I have many of these CDs, but not of the blues CDs!! :)

Renee Thanos says …

BB King. We enjoy these CDs for introducing our children to many genres of music.

Kristen says …

I am not too familiar with blues but would love to win this CD set!

Clyde W. McCain says …

Mississippi John Hurt was the first blues I was exposed too. Although I can still remember Running with my friends in St. Louis, MO to watch B.B. King play at Rose's Playhouse a small nightclub. Albert King played many college concerts in the St. Louis area in the 70's. He once played with the St. Louis Symphony at Powell Hall in the STL. You haven't lived till you hear Albert sing "Born under a Bad Sign" with a full symphony orchestra.

Heather says …

My mom got me my first Putamayo cd when I was 7 years old, and I haven't looked back since! My whole family loves them all.

Edith says …

I have purchased Putumayo's Salsa & African CDs and enjoy listening to all of the songs. It would be a thrill to listen to Putumayo blues with a glass of bourbon.

Lisa H says …

Muddy Waters and Buddy Guy are some of my favorite artists

Amber says …

I love Bonnie Raitt. Her voice and musical styling are great.

Donna says …

I love African music!

evelyn schwerin says …

i love the blues. even my email is short for blues lover. i love all styles of blues.my favorite artist are muddy waters and willie dixon.

Tony says …

Some of the best fun music ever.

Sue says …

Taj Mahal's music heals my soul. With their donations they will physically heal many many souls.

Cathy Edwards says …

I'm not familiar with the blues, I want to hear the CD

Mich says …

Howlin' Wolf, Marcia Ball, Son Seals.

Joan Saint-Hilaire says …

Music is like medicine for the soul. I enjoy listening to various types of music that appeals to my emotions. I'd love to win these CDs.

Ivy says …

This is the kind of music that you can't help but to be in a great mood!

Bernice says …

I don't know much about this type of music and I'd love to listen to it.

Myra says …

B B King

Dawn Smith says …

This is exciting!!! I love Guitar Shorty! I'm Looking forward to this cd set!

Tricia C. says …

Music communicates in ways that words cannot. Sometimes, you just have to FEEL it!

Tone Amado says …

BB-King is the best and don't forget Lucille(his guitar)

Hepsharat Amadi says …

My favorite blues artist is Taj Mahal. African roots are really strong in his music.

Barb says …

I love the blues and it''s next to impossible to say that I have 1 favorite. There are just so many great blues musicians; BB King, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Eric Clpaton, Johnny Lang, Kenny Wayne Shepard, Muddy Waters, and on and on. It is always fun to hear new blues music and get someone else's take on it.

melissa says …

i would love to listen to this!

Kim says …

Buddy Guy

dawn says …

music to dance too ~hoorah!

Jessie Rauen says …

Love these cds

ReneeB says …

Loved African music, the blues and the history of the blues since I was a teen. So many favorites: Muddy Waters, Howling Wolf, Keb Mo, Etta James, Willie King, I could go on and on. Have several Putumayo CDs and would love to add this set!

nannette says …

This will be great to have.

Rick Leighton says …

Putumayo has done so much to help world music become accessible to everyone around the globe. This new series is a great way for people to link African roots with contemporary blues. As a musician and an educator, I love to both listen to Putumayo CDs and share them with children!

Rosalie says …

BB King is my favorite Blues artist. I'd love to have this CD set.

Gretchen says …

Can't wait to hear this! I love all African music and Putumayo always does such a great job with their collections.

Jane says …

I have been a Putmayo fan for many years and would love these CD's.

Cheryl says …

Can't wait to hear this blend of music! Can't pick a favorite beyond the musician in the house!

Stephanie says …

We love the relaxing melodies of blues!

Agnes says …

I would love to have one of their collections - we often check out sets of music from the library - I need something to get my 'groove back" and have some great times dancing with my sons.

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