Sonny Rhodes

Genres: Blues
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Decades: 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
Links: image VIAF wikidata wikipedia


Clarence Edward Smith, 3 November 1940, Smithville, Texas, USA. Rhodes received his first electric guitar at the age of nine and began emulating T-Bone Walker, Chuck Willis (Rhodes still wears a distinctive turban), Junior Parker and Bobby Bland. He first recorded in 1958 in Austin releasing ‘I’ll Never Let You Go’, he then moved to California two years later and recorded for Galaxy in 1963. In the 70s and 80s he made several mediocre albums for European companies and some interesting singles for Blues Connoisseur, Cleve White’s Cherrie label, and his own Rhodes-Way label. In 1991 Rhodes made one of the best album of his career Disciple Of The Blues, highlighting his vocals and songwriting skills in addition to his prowess on both regular, and more regularly, his lap steel guitars. His lap-steel has resulted in a number of W.C. Handy awards. This has been followed by a particularly productive period of performing and recording.

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