Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Robert Johnson and Chicago

Robert Johnson - While cruising to mine office this morning, I was enjoying BB King's Bluesville channel on Sirius Satellite Radio. As I slithered into my parking spot behind mine office, the delta blues guitar of Robert Johnson began.

It was Johnson's classic, "Sweet Home Chicago." I simply could not allow my day to continue without enjoying the song!

I increased the volume, and I was quickly lulled into reverie by the music.

As the song ended, a thought quickly ended the serenity I had been enjoying: What would Johnson sing about Chicago, were he to see it as it is today?

The answer could not be pleasant. In 1936, there is no doubt whatever that Johnson felt that he was at a crossroad—the devil at one fork and God at the other.

This is the theme of Johnson's "Cross Road Blues."

The lyrics tell of the narrator's failed attempts to hitch a ride from an intersection as night approaches:

Standin' at the crossroad, I tried to flag a ride (2×)
Didn't nobody seem to know me, everybody pass me by
Standin' at the crossroad, risin' sun goin' down (2×)
I believe to my soul now, po' Bob is sinkin' down

Were he to visit Chicago today, he would not recognize it.

Unfortunately, life in Chicago is not significantly different from life in other major cities of the U.S.

It was. as is often espoused, "...a kinder, gentler time."

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
- 2 Timothy 3:16 KJV