An animated version of the Robert Johnson legend

Whilst cruising the world wide webs recently, I checked out a site that I occasionally use to find unusual things — it’s called Open Culture.

It’s a fun site, with lots of free stuff. Books, movies, music and much more. I highly recommend it for your amusement and enlightenment — and if you’re anything like me, you can use some of each right now.

I plugged in a search for “blues,” and was rewarded with many interesting results, but one in particular caught my eye.

Robert Johnson

I’ve always been a fan of the old blues masters, and of course that includes the legendary figure of Robert Johnson. And here was an article from 2015, titled The Story of Bluesman Robert Johnson’s Famous Deal With the Devil Retold in Three Animations. The combination of another article about Johnson plus some cartoons was too much to resist.

I’ll link to each of the animations below, but the article provides lots of interesting context. Ignore it at your peril!

Also, as part of that article, I found mention of author Elijah Wald, who, among other books, wrote a fascinating account of Johnson’s life and his place in the musical world that surrounded him — Escaping the Delta: Robert Johnson and the Invention of the Blues — in 2004.

That was a book that I just happened to have reviewed in 2004. I can recommend the book much more highly than the review, but both are here for your indulgence.

Here are the three animations:

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