12 May 1952, New York City, New York, USA. A contemporary interpreter of the country blues tradition, Davis, alongside peers including Keb Mo and Corey Harris, has done much to revive the genres profile. His easy, laconic style - informed by legends such as Robert Johnson and Lead Belly - is typically punctuated by stories and humorous oratory.
Davis background is hardly typical of past country blues maestros such as Lightnin Hopkins, Mississippi John Hurt or Mississippi Fred McDowell. He grew up in urban New York amid affluence, the son of film and theatre celebrities Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis (he later collaborated with them on 1995s Two Hah Hahs And A Homeboy). His commitment to the blues began at the age of eight, when he attended summer music camp in Vermont where Pete Seegers brother, John, taught him how to play the banjo. He still finger picks, an attribute which has helped distinguish him as a...