The late Huddie William Ledbetter (Lead Belly) was born in 1888
“The blues is like this. You lay down some night and you turn from one side of the bed to the other all night long. It’s not too cold in that bed, and it ain’t too hot. But what’s the matter The blues has got you.”
I heard Leadbelly somewhere and that’s what got me into folk music, which was exploding.
~Bob Dylan (Joe Smith interview 1988)
” Lead Belly was not an influence, he was the influence. If it wasn’t for him, I may never have been here. I don’t think he’s really dead. A lot of people’s bodies die but I don’t think their spirits die with them.
”Sang the blues wonderfully,but he was much bigger than that. He encompassed the whole black era, from square dance calls to the blues of the 30’s and 40’s”