Library of Congress recordings from the early 1930's, some recorded in Angola Penitentiary.
Includes liner notes by Kip Lornell.
Personnel: Lead Belly (vocals, guitar); Huddie Ledbetter (vocals, slide guitar).
Liner Note Author: Kip Lornell.
Photographer: John Reynolds.
This is a set of some of the earliest recordings that Leadbelly (Huddie Ledbetter) made for the Library of Congress. The set is made up of blues selections and ballads, and opens with one of his most famous songs, "Irene" (also known as "Goodnight Irene"). The title song has also become a standard, and there are numerous other well-known numbers included, such as "Take a Whiff on Me" and "Careless Love." This music was documented by the father and son folklorist team of John and Alan Lomax. 12-string guitar and Leadbelly's enormous voice are the only instruments on the dramatic and romantic MIDNIGHT SPECIAL. With this collection, it is easy to see why Leadbelly's music became the template that many subsequent blues and folk singers followed.