Friday To-Do: T-Model Ford | Rock Candy

Friday To-Do: T-Model Ford



9 p.m., White Water Tavern.

Back in 2001, when he was still writing his own articles, Rick Bragg joked in the New York Times that T-Model Ford “did not sell his soul, as legend says Robert Johnson did, to master the blues. The Devil, people say, would run from Mr. Ford.” That article, written when Ford was 79, mourned the last days of the Delta bluesmen. Eight years later, Ford's still kickin'; in fact, in a recently recorded video of a radio session, he looks downright spry. I don't know what happened to Spam, the bluesman's longtime drummer, who favored nothing more than a snare and a bass drum; Ford comes to White Water with Seattle-based blues-rockers Gravelroad backing him. By the sound of live sessions on the band's website, they're keeping it spare enough. That's what fans of Ford's live shows and four albums with Fat Possum expect — blues that's raw, rhythmic and full of lyrics traditional and bizarre (for a taste of the latter, stream my favorite “Chicken Head Man” on Rock Candy*). Jim Mize opens.

*I couldn't find "Chicken Head Man," but here's another good un, "To the Left, To the Right."

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