Back in episode 42 I featured a documentary called Honeyboy, which was about David “Honeyboy” Edwards, Honeyboy is very much an under the radar Blues musician who is connected deeply to the roots of the Delta Blues. This documentary’s amazing, but there are more resources available about him than just the documentary.
The World Don’t Owe Me Nothing, is a book about David “Honeyboy” Edwards and the material is taken from countless interviews and discussions about his past and journey through a lifetime of the blues. Now, just to be clear, this book is not a direct parallel to the documentary. There are a ton of stories contained within this book. The folks responsible for compiling all of the interviews and discussions are Janis Martinson and Michael Robert Frank.
The preface of this book has an interesting story about where a lot of these conversations were held and it happened to be inside of David “Honeyboy” Edwards Lincoln town car. The book is littered with raw stories about his life, where he came from, and how he came to Chicago.
Here is the summary from the inside front cover: “The Blues has been described in many ways, but to Honeyboy Edwards it is ‘a leading thing,’ an irresistible feeling that has called him on – away from home, away from comfort, away from the arms of loving women. The Blues has taken him along a path that strangely parallels the development of this haunting music. From sharecropper’s son to itinerant Bluesman, Honeyboy’s life reads like a distillation of the classic Blues legends. His good friends and musical partners were Blues pioneers Charlie Patton, Big Walter Horton, Tommy McClennan, and Robert Johnson, among many others. He saw some of the first Blues musicians in the Delta; Tommy Johnson, Son House, and older artists unrecorded and lost to us. Honeyboy went on the road to play guitar at age 17 with Big Joe Williams. He hopped the freight trains of Blues lore; the P-vine, the Southern, and the Yellow Dog, and played the riverboats, juke joints and good timing houses along the dusty roads of the Delta.”
This book is just as much biography as it is music history lesson, and there is even quite a bit of American history included as well. If you’ve seen the Honeyboy documentary, you can almost hear his voice in each of these stories. Each chapter’s like a new story. I’m so pumped to have found this book and I’m so pumped to be sharing it with you. This has been a fun read so far so if you have some down time make sure to grab a copy and add it to your reading list.
The World Don’t Owe Me Nothing Book Link