By: Brittney James

Blues is called blues because the lyrics come from states of agitation or sadness. Blues originated on Southern slave plantations and gained its popularity in the 1920s. The first type of blues songs was called delta blues or Mississippi delta blues because it originated near the Mississippi river.

Muddy Waters, McKinley Morganfield, is an affluential blues singer and musician and is also known as the “father of modern Chicago blues.” Many know him from his song “Baby Please Don’t Go,” which displays his vulnerability and begging his lover to stay with him instead of traveling to New Orleans. The sadness in this song is a true example of blues music.

Blues was commercially recorded through race records, which was made by and for African Americans. This continued until Blues gained popularity from the white audience which lead to them purchasing and supporting blues records. The blues also has a 12-bar structure that was also used by Led Zeppelin and Elvis Presley. Blues is secular folk music, but if you aren’t listening to the lyrics it may sound like gospel.