Rev. Gary Davis: Death Don’t Have No Mercy

This video becomes very interesting soon after the one minute mark.

The Rev. Gary Davis–whose 116th birthday is next Monday–was one of the main bridges that connected the African-American blues performers of the 1930s and 1940s with the mostly white generation of rock and folk performers who now are elder statesmen themselves or already are gone.

Davis had perhaps his greatest influence on Jorma Kaukonen of Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna. His songs also were performed by The Grateful Dead, Ry Cooder, David Bromberg, Dave Van Ronk and others.

Here is a bio of Davis, a discography and what seems like a partial list of covers of his work.

His most popular songs include Cocaine Blues, the traditional If I Had My Way, Hesitation Blues and Sally, Where’d You Get Your Liquor From?  This version of Candyman, unfortunately, is an instrumental. Hot Tuna’s version has the lyrics.


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