It’s been called the Devil’s Music. And it’s not just cause there’s a lot of singing about whiskey and women. The Blues sound is particularly spooky. Think about it. The “blue note”—the tone in the scale that makes it the blues also makes for a very eerie feeling. It’s a note that’s not in traditional western music scales. It lives in musical space somewhere in between other more “sanctified” notes. The “blue note” was brought over to America from Africa. And to European Christians, hearing it for the first time, the blue note made the music really weird. In fact, it made it downright scary. Downright devilish.
Sometimes the blues is a sound that seems to come up from hell itself. And of course—Satan’s an important figure in the music. It was the devil who crawled up out of hell to tune Robert Johnson’s guitar. And thereby change the face of music forever. But it’s not just the devil. It’s the ghosts he sends up too. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If you’re being haunted, you got yourself a kind of blues. And if you got the blues, it’s just like you’re being haunted. Like that old Lonnie Johnson song says–”Blues is only a ghost.”
So for all those reasons, the blues is the perfect music for this scary day. And here’s a perfect song for it. Let’s brew up a storm. Maybe a little thunder and lightnin’? Lightnin’ Hopkins that is. With “Black Ghost Blues.”
Check out C.C. Rider’s Halloween Blues Playlist: