Check out these new and used Charley Patton vinyl records LPs for sale. Charley Patton was one of the most influential Mississippi blues artists. The singer/guitarist was born around 1891 in Hinds County and spent most of his life in the Delta area of Mississippi. Patton was based at Dockery’s plantation along with other notable blues artists Tommy Johnson and Willie Brown. He spent most of his career playing ragtime songs for patrons at country parties and barrelhouses. His enigmatic stage presence and overall goofing around antics made him a very popular entertainer at such events. Charley Patton’s style involves his signature gravel voice which was often strained, along with a very percussive guitar technique. He made over 60 vinyl recordings between 1930 in 1935, and his best-known song is Pony Blues. Other popular rare vinyl records include Moon Going Down and High Water Everywhere. Patton was a big influence on Howlin’ Wolf. He passed away in 1934. We recommend starting your Charlie Patton vinyl collection with his comprehensive Complete Recorded Works in Chronological Order. Our LP inventory is constantly changing, so check back often, or browse our list of vinyl from blues musicians.
Charley Patton: The Father of the Delta Blues
Charley Patton, born Charley Paul Patton in Hinds County, Mississippi, around April 1891, was a seminal figure in the world of blues music. Recognized as the “Father of the Delta Blues,” his unique guitar playing, distinctive vocal style, and emotive songwriting left an indelible mark on the genre. With a career that spanned the early 20th century, Charley Patton’s influence on the blues remains foundational and enduring.
Early Life and Musical Beginnings
Charley Patton’s early life was deeply rooted in the Mississippi Delta region. Raised in a musical family, he was exposed to the sounds of the blues from a young age. He was heavily influenced by local musicians and absorbed the rich musical traditions of the Deep South.
Pioneering the Delta Blues Style
Charley Patton is celebrated for pioneering the Delta blues style, characterized by its raw, emotive vocals and the intricate, fingerstyle guitar playing. His guitar work featured bottleneck slide techniques, fingerpicking patterns, and a percussive approach that gave his music a distinctive and earthy quality. His lyrics often told stories of the struggles and joys of everyday life in the Mississippi Delta.
Recording Career and Signature Songs
In the 1920s, Charley Patton began his recording career, making a significant impact on the emerging blues scene. His early recordings, including “Pony Blues,” “Down the Dirt Road Blues,” and “Spoonful,” are considered classic examples of the Delta blues. These songs showcased his emotional depth and masterful guitar skills.
Influence on Future Generations
Charley Patton’s contributions to the blues genre extend beyond his own recordings. He was a mentor to many musicians, including his own family members and other influential artists. Tommy Johnson, Howlin’ Wolf, and Robert Johnson were among those who acknowledged Patton’s profound influence on their music. His distinct playing style and emotive singing became a template for the Delta blues that followed.
Live Performances and Stage Presence
Charley Patton’s live performances were known for their energy and intensity. His charismatic stage presence, combined with his gritty vocals and skillful guitar work, captivated audiences. His ability to connect with listeners on a deep emotional level made each performance a memorable experience.
Personal Struggles and Legacy
Despite his profound influence on the blues, Charley Patton faced personal struggles, including issues related to alcohol. His health began to deteriorate in the 1930s, but he continued to perform and record. He passed away on April 28, 1934, leaving behind a legacy that continues to resonate with blues enthusiasts and musicians.
Legacy and Enduring Impact
Charley Patton’s legacy in the world of blues is immeasurable. He is revered as a pioneer of the Delta blues and an originator of the emotional, raw style that became the foundation of the genre. His influence on future generations of blues musicians, as well as the broader musical landscape, is profound.
Charley Patton’s life and career embody the essence of the Delta blues, a genre deeply rooted in the Mississippi Delta’s cultural and musical heritage. His masterful guitar work, distinctive vocals, and profound storytelling made him a foundational figure in the blues. As the “Father of the Delta Blues,” Charley Patton’s legacy endures in the music of countless artists who continue to draw inspiration from his emotive and evocative style. His contributions to the blues are a testament to the enduring power of music to convey emotion, share stories, and connect people through the universal language of song.