Big Walter Horton or Walter "Shakey" Horton (April 6, 1917– December 8, 1981) was an American blues harmonica player. Events 46 BC - Julius Caesar defeats Caecilius Metellus Scipio and Marcus Porcius Cato in the Battle of Thapsus Year 1917 ( MCMXVII) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common year Events 1609 - Biblioteca Ambrosiana opens its reading room the second public library of Europe. Year 1981 ( MCMLXXXI) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link displays the 1981 The Blues is a vocal and instrumental form of Music based on the use of the Blue notes It emerged as an accessible form of self-expression A harmonica is a free reed Wind instrument which is played by blowing air into it or drawing air out by placing lips over individual holes (reed chambers or
Born Walter Horton in Horn Lake, Mississippi, he was playing a harmonica by the time he was five years old. Horn Lake is a city in DeSoto County, Mississippi, United States. In his early teens, he lived in Memphis, Tennessee and claimed that his earliest recordings were done there in the late 1920s with the Memphis Jug Band, although there is no documentation, and many have since disputed this claim. Memphis is a City in the southwest corner of Tennessee, and the County seat of Shelby County. The Memphis Jug Band was an American musical group in the late 1920s and early to mid 1930s (He also claimed to have taught some harmonica to Little Walter and the original Sonny Boy Williamson, although these claims are unsubstantiated, and in the case of the older Williamson, somewhat suspect. For the radio personality see Little Walter DeVenne. Little Walter (born Marion Walter Jacobs in Marksville LA and raised Sonny Boy Williamson ( John Lee Curtis Williamson, 30 March 1914 &mdash 1 June 1948) was an American Blues ) As with many of his peers, he spent much of his career existing on a meagre income and living with constant discrimination in a segregated America. In the 1930s he played with various blues performers across the Mississippi delta region. The Mississippi Delta is the distinct northwest section of the state of Mississippi that lies between the Mississippi and Yazoo Rivers Technically It's generally accepted that his first recordings were made in Memphis, backing guitarist Little Buddy Doyle on recordings for the Okeh and Vocalion Records labels, in 1939. Okeh Records began as an Independent record label based in the United States of America in Vocalion Records was a Record label historically active in the United States and in the United Kingdom. These recordings were in the acoustic duo format popularized by Sleepy John Estes with his harmonicist Hammie Nixon, among others. John Adam Estes — 5 June 1977) commonly known as Sleepy John Estes or Sleepy John, was a U Hammie Nixon ( 22 January 1908 — 17 August 1984) was an American Harmonica player On these recordings, Walter's style is not yet fully realized, but there are clear hints of what is to come. He eventually stopped playing the harp for a living due to poor health, and worked mainly outside of music in the 1940s. By the early 1950s, he was playing music again, and was among the first to record for Sam Phillips at Sun Records in Memphis, who would later record rock and roll superstars Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, and country giant Johnny Cash. Samuel Cornelius Phillips ( January 5, 1923 – July 30, 2003) better known as Sam Phillips, was an American Sun Records was a Record label based in Memphis, Tennessee, starting operations on March 27 1952. Carl Lee Perkins ( April 9, 1932 &ndash January 19, 1998) was an American pioneer of Rockabilly music a mix of Rhythm Johnny Cash (born J R Cash; February 26 1932 - September 12 2003 was a Grammy Award -winning American country Singer-songwriter. The early Big Walter recordings from Sun include performances from a young Phineas Newborn, Jr. on piano, who later gained fame as a jazz pianist. Phineas Newborn Jr (born December 14, 1931 in Whiteville Tennessee -died May 26, 1989 in Memphis Tennessee) was an
During the early 1950s he first appeared on the Chicago blues scene, where he frequently played with fellow Memphis and Delta musicians who had also moved north, including guitarists Eddie Taylor and Johnny Shines. The Chicago blues is a form of Blues music that developed in Chicago Illinois by taking the basic acoustic guitar and Harmonica -based Delta blues Memphis is a City in the southwest corner of Tennessee, and the County seat of Shelby County. Eddie Taylor ( January 29 1923 – December 25 1985) was an American Blues Guitarist and Singer. Johnny Shines ( April 26 1915 – April 20 1992) was an American Blues Singer and Guitarist. When Junior Wells left the Muddy Waters band at the end of 1952, Horton replaced him in Muddy's band long enough to play on one session with Muddy in January of 1953. Junior Wells ( December 9, 1934 – January 15, 1998) born Amos Blakemore, was a blues Vocalist and Harmonica For the album by Redman, see Muddy Waters (album. For the college football coach see Muddy Waters (football coach. Year 1952 ( MCMLII) was a Leap year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Big Walter's style had by then fully matured, and he was playing in the heavily amplified style that became one of the trademarks of the Chicago blues sound. His harmonica playing is characterized by a deep, rich tone, and precise articulation, using the full register of the harp and utilizing the higher notes of the harp with great dexterity. His tone was consistently deeper or 'heavier' than Little Walter's, but with phrasing that was more in keeping with the Memphis traditions, and less adventurous and improvisational than the jazzier explorations employed by his chief harmonica rival Little Walter. For the radio personality see Little Walter DeVenne. Little Walter (born Marion Walter Jacobs in Marksville LA and raised For the radio personality see Little Walter DeVenne. Little Walter (born Marion Walter Jacobs in Marksville LA and raised He also made great use of techniques such as tongue-blocking. Many blues harmonica aficionados consider Horton's solo on Jimmy Rogers' 1956 Chess recording "Walking By Myself" to be his greatest moment, and a high point of post-war Chicago blues. For other uses see James Rogers (disambiguation. Jimmy Rogers ( 3 June 1924 &ndash 19 December
Also known as "Mumbles", and "Shakey" because of his head motion while playing the harmonica, Horton was active on the Chicago blues scene during the 1960s as blues music gained popularity with white audiences. From the early 1960s onward, he recorded and appeared frequently as a sideman with Eddie Taylor, Johnny Shines, Johnny Young, Sunnyland Slim, Willie Dixon and many others. Eddie Taylor ( January 29 1923 – December 25 1985) was an American Blues Guitarist and Singer. Johnny Shines ( April 26 1915 – April 20 1992) was an American Blues Singer and Guitarist. Albert "Sunnyland Slim" Luandrew (September 5 William James "Willie" Dixon ( July 1, 1915 &ndash January 29, 1992) was a well-known American Blues Bassist He toured extensively, usually as a backing musician, and in the 1970s he performed at blues and folk festivals in the U. S. and Europe, frequently with Willie Dixon's Chicago Blues All-Stars. He has also appeared as a guest on recordings by blues and rock stars such as Fleetwood Mac and Johnny Winter. Fleetwood Mac are a British / American John Dawson "Johnny" Winter III (born on 23 February, 1944 in Beaumont Texas, USA is an American Blues guitarist In the late 1970's he toured the country with Homesick James Williamson, Richard Molina, Bradley Pierce Smith and Paul Nebenzahl, and appeared on National Public Radio broadcasts. Homesick James ( 30 April, 1910 - 13 December 2006) was a black American Blues musician His musical output was somewhat inconsistent over the course of his career, unpredictably wavering between brilliant and workmanlike, and much of his best work was done as a sideman. Some of the best compilations of his own work are Mouth-Harp Maestro and Fine Cuts. Also notable is the low-key but excellent Big Walter Horton and Carey Bell album released by Alligator Records in 1972. Carey Bell ( November 14[[ 936]] - May 6[[ 007]] was an American musician who played the Harmonica in the musical style of Chicago blues. Alligator Records is a Chicago -based independent Blues Record label founded by Bruce Iglauer in 1971.
A quiet, unassuming man, Horton is remembered as one of the most gifted harmonica players in the history of blues music. He died in Chicago in 1981, and was buried in the Restvale Cemetery in Alsip, Illinois. The Burr Oak and Restvale cemeteries are located in Alsip Illinois, a suburb slightly southwest of the city of Chicago. Alsip is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 19725 at the 2000 census