[JPL] Robert Lockwood Jr. RIP

Jazz Promo Services jazzpromo at earthlink.net
Fri Nov 24 11:06:36 EST 2006

Pioneering blues guitarist, singer

November 23, 2006

Robert Lockwood Jr. -- a pioneering Mississippi Delta blues guitarist and
singer who studied guitar as a child with legendary bluesman Robert Johnson
and was a studio musician in Chicago for a host of blues records -- has
died. He was 91.

Mr. Lockwood died Tuesday of respiratory failure at University Hospitals
Case Medical Center in Cleveland. He had been a patient since suffering a
stroke Nov. 3.

Mr. Lockwood was born in Turkey Scratch, Ark. At 11, he started guitar
lessons with Johnson, who briefly moved in with Mr. Lockwood's mother.

''He never showed me nothing two times,'' Mr. Lockwood said in a 2005
interview with the Cleveland Plain Dealer. ''After I got the foundation of
the way he played, everything was easy.''

Mr. Lockwood worked on street corners and in bars and became a musical
mentor to B.B. King, who listened to Mr. Lockwood in the 1940s on the ''King
Biscuit Time'' radio show broadcast from Helena, Ark.

Mr. Lockwood moved to Chicago in the 1950s and was a session player on
records by Little Walter, Sunnyland Slim, Roosevelt Sykes and other blues
musicians. He branched out from the delta-style blues to jump blues, jazz
and funk. In 1960, he moved to Cleveland and played in blues clubs for

As a solo performer, Mr. Lockwood earned Grammy nominations for two albums:
1998's ''I Got to Find Me a Woman'' and 2000's ''Delta Crossroads.''

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