Joe Louis Walker
June 16, 2023
About the Artist
Walker has recorded with Ike Turner, Bonnie Raitt, Taj Mahal, and Steve Cropper, opened for Muddy Waters and Thelonious Monk, hung out with Jimi Hendrix, Freddie King, Mississippi Fred McDowell, and was a close friend and roommate of Mike Bloomfield.
Walker's 1986 debut album Cold Is the Night on HighTone announced his arrival in stunning fashion, and his subsequent output for Verve, Alligator, HighTone, and others only served to further establish Walker as one of today's leading bluesmen. The New York Times raved, "Walker is a singer with a Cadillac of a voice. His guitar solos are fast, wiry, and incisive, moaning with bluesy despair." Rolling Stone calls him "ferocious."
A myriad of organizations have recognized Joe for his achievements. He's a member of the Blues Hall of Fame, was named a USA Fellow by United States Artists, won multiple W.C. Handy Awards and Blues Music Awards, has been a recipient of San Francisco's prestigious Bammy Awards, and was also awarded a lifetime achievement award from the Mississippi Valley Blues Society.
Referred to as "A musician's musician," Walker has earned his rightful place among the pantheon of legendary electric blues singer/guitarist/songwriters like B.B. King, Buddy Guy, and Robert Cray. Herbie Hancock called Walker "a national treasure." Chick Corea glibly referred to him as "The Chick Corea of Blues," and Aretha Franklin called him "The Bluesman."