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Stefan Grossman

Guitarist, educator, and historian Stefan Grossman was a student of acoustic blues and gospel singer/guitarist Rev. Gary Davis. Beginning when he was 15, Grossman studied with Davis on weekends, spending eight to ten hours at his house in Harlem, absorbing all he could. After studying with Davis for eight years in high school and college, he learned and studied with other country blues guitarists: Mississippi John Hurt, Son House, Skip James, Mance Lipscomb, and Fred McDowell. Other early influences for Grossman included Elizabeth Cotten, Sam McGee, Willie Brown, and Charley Patton.

In the early '60s, Grossman formed the Even Dozen Jug Band and worked with the political rock band the Fugs before moving to Great Britain. In 1968, he co-founded Kicking Mule Records with Ed Denson, a label that showcased idiosyncratic acoustic blues and folk guitar styles. The co-founders dissolved their partnership in the mid-'80s, but Kicking Mule's catalog was purchased by Fantasy Records. Some of the vinyl sides have seen the light of day on compact disc. From 1967 to the early '80s, Grossman lived in Great Britain, where he carved a reputation on the European blues and folk festival circuit, playing with British-raised acoustic guitarists like John Renbourn and John Fahey.

Grossman's solo discography goes all the way back to 1966, when he recorded How to Play Blues Guitar for Elektra Records; his sessionography also includes recordings with the Even Dozen Jug Band (which also included such future luminaries as John Sebastian, Maria Muldaur, and David Grisman) as well as albums by Paul Simon, John Fahey, Charlie Musselwhite, and Happy Traum. In the early '80s, Grossman began a long relationship with Shanachie Records of Newton, NJ, recording extensively and issuing such albums as Shining Shadows (1988), Guitar Landscapes (1990), Love, Devils & the Blues (1992), Northern Skies, Southern Blues (1997), and Shake That Thing: Fingerpicking Country Blues (1998) for the label. He also helped Shanachie launch their Guitar Artistry imprint series, showcasing such artists as himself, Renbourn, and Traum. While based in northwest New Jersey, Grossman toured infrequently and concentrated his efforts on running his Vestapol instructional video business, releasing videos (many of which are now available on DVD) by guitarists ranging from Merle Travis and Chet Atkins to Dave Van Ronk and Brownie McGhee.

During the 2000s, Grossman could be found recording in duo and trio settings (2007’s Bermuda Triangle Exit with Tokio Uchida and Played a Little Fiddle with Danny Kalb and Steve Katz) and releasing the results on his Guitar Workshop label -- which also issued albums by the likes of Davy Graham, Happy Traum, and David Laibman as well as archival recordings and a number of various-artist collections. In 2006 he began touring once again, making appearances in the U.S., England, Europe, and Japan. Grossman remains one of the world's foremost authorities on acoustic blues guitar. ~ Richard Skelly
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Those Pleasant Days

Disc 1

1. So They Say

2. The Birthday Song

3. Odyssey

4. The Alibi

5. A Prairie Song

6. Waterfalls

7. Bye And Bye

8. Fat Man

9. Orphan Sunday

10. Little Sally Walker

11. Roseberry Hill

12. A Pretty Little Tune

13. Rise Up Lazarus

14. Blues Jumped The Rabbit

15. Man's Confidence

16. Song For A Brother

17. River Of Jordan

18. Those Pleasant Days

19. My Travelling Song

Disc 2

1. I'm So Glad

2. Texas Lemon Flavour

3. Avalon Blues

4. Roll And Tumble Blues

5. Shake Sugaree

6. Martin's Joy

7. Promised Land

8. Morning Comes

9. The Do It All Over You Boogie

10. Blues For Mr. Sam

11. Medley: A.Vestapol, B. That's No Way To Get Along

12. Those Lazy Blues

13. (Flying In On A) Tightrope

14. Lullaby For Anna

15. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

16. Tomorrow (Parts 1, 2 & 3)

17. Concrete Parachute

18. Down South Blues

19. Heliotrope Bouquet

20. John Henry

21. Danish Drone

22. Matesa

23. Lena Anne

24. Whistlin' Blues

25. New Stoned Pony Blues

x

Track List: Shake That Thing

1. Yazoo Strut

2. Monkey Wrench Rag

3. Spider Web Blues

4. Crossed Canoes

5. Death Come Creeping

6. Welsh Cob Blues

7. Square And Compass

8. Shake That Thing

9. F Rag

10. Candy Man

11. C.C. Rider

12. Goose Tracks

13. House On The Hill

14. All My Friends Are Gone

15. Drunkard's Path

16. Kaleidoscope Rag

17. Delia

x

Track List: Love, Devils And The Blues

1. Love, Devils And The Blues

2. A Heart Much Obliged

3. The Windblown Star

4. Train Fare Blues

5. Return To Little Rock

6. Bottleneck Delight

7. The Vamp Of Oblivion

8. Descending Into The Jaws Of Change

9. Grandad Clough And Kirkhamgate Jim

10. Cactus Boogie

11. Memories Of Perls

12. Stompin' On The Tappahannock

13. Jo And Her Daughters

14. Charged And Ready

15. Late Night Apollo Blues

16. Ode To Mississippi John Hurt

17. Love, Devils And The Blues, Part 2

x

Track List: Black Melodies On A Clear Afternoon

1. Struttin' Rag

2. Blake's Breakdown

3. Blues Ain't Dry

4. St. Louis Tickle

5. Working On The New Railroad

6. Atlanta Rag

7. Nobody's Business

8. Haag City Dance

9. Mabel's Dream

10. Spoonful

11. East Colorado Blues

12. Little Boy, Little Boy Who Made Your Britches

13. Smokey Mokes

14. The Entertainer

15. Glory Of Love

16. Slippin' 'til My Girl Comes In Partner

17. Harlem Rag

18. John Henry

19. It Won't Be Long

20. Sister Kate's Syncopated Dance

21. Silver Swan

22. Charley James

23. Buck Dancer's Choice

24. Down South Blues

25. See That Girl Sitting On The Fence

26. See See Rider

27. Powder Rag

28. Sugar Babe

29. Franklin Blues

30. A Salty Dog Rag

31. King Porter Stomp

32. Bill Bailey

33. Delta Crossroads

34. Fare Thee Well Titanic

x

Track List: Yazoo Basin Boogie

1. Tickle Dew

2. Memphis Jellyroll

3. Yazoo Basin Boogie

4. I'm So Glad

5. Hambone Rag

6. Avalon Blues

7. Dallas Rag

8. Don't Let My Baby Catch You Here

9. Slow Blues In C

10. Yola Blues

11. Colored Aristocracy

12. Katz Rag

13. Delta Exposition Of 1917

14. Buck Dance

15. Mississippi Blues No.2

16. County Line

17. Last Of Callahan

18. Boogie On Main Street

19. Pigtown Fling

20. Texas Lemon Flavor

21. Roberta

22. Lottie's Blues

x

Track List: How To Play Blues Guitar

1. Yonder Comes The Blues

2. Police Dog Blues

3. Easy Street

4. Ragtime Mama Blues

5. Corrina, Corrina

6. If You Haven't Any Hay, Don't Get On Down The Road

7. Man Of My Own

8. Assassination Of John Fahey

9. Moon Goin' Down

10. Ragged And Dirty

11. Crow Jane

12. Pallet On Your Floor

13. Mississippi Blues No.3

14. New Pony Blues

15. You Got The Pocket Book, I Got The Key

16. Someday Baby

17. Juicy Lucy

18. Hard Time Killin' Floor

19. Belzona Blues

20. Oh Babe, Ain' T No Lie

21. Special Rider Blues

22. Weeping Willow

23. Wake Up Mama

Comments

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Jorma plays just as well....
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SWEEEEEEEET

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Cool sounds. Submitted February 2016
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Depressing. Get out
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A delightful tune
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oh my oh my sweet rasberry pie...I be playin' my new Teton 12 string
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honest.mikeo b
you left out ernie hawkins
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vwvan1984
Rory Block, Stefan's lover then, recorded a lot of the How to Play the Blues... no credit mentioned. Lame.
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FIRST COMMENT OF 2013!! WOOHOO!!
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Lovely sound! Could listen to acoustic blues all night long :)
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When this tune came on, I thought it WAS Rev. Gary Davis!!!
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One of the great links to the old time blues guitarists.
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Great, great player.
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SWEEEETTTT!! ! !
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I recommend too, the Grammy Award winning, black string band music of The Carolina Chocolate Drops.
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cordintl
Wonderful!
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ooh!! his music is sooooo fun.
Report as inappropriate
...but John Fahey was not a Brit.
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ech1835
Great Artist!
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Whoa this is what jazzy-bluzie is all about to listen you are caught by their light flipping rythum that can't help but put you in a good mood.

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