Daylight Video

Walter “Furry” Lewis, one of the earliest masters of the bottleneck guitar, was born on this day in 1893 in the Mississippi Delta, cut his musical teeth on Beale Street, and lived all the way until 1981.

I don’t usually feature multiple songs, but this video of Furry performing “Good Morning, Judge,” “John Henry,” and “Furry’s Blues” for an audience of Leon Russell and friends (with Leon on piano for the last tune) is just too good. I think this was in 1971; it was clearly back when people smoked indoors without thinking about it.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.