In the 1960s rock’n’roll and soul were dominant in a mainstream popular music culture and both of them evolved from the African- American music.  White musicians brought blues to a new audience in the USA and abroad.  Dick Waterman who organised blues festival in Europe was a major influence on advertising blues music abroad. In the UK blues-rock bands had a great influence on music culture in 1960.

John Lee Hooker and Muddy Waters continued to perform and influence a new generation of musicians. John Lee Hooker combined the blues and rock elements together. BB King’s guitar technique earned him a title “king of blues” and unlike in Chicago style he used strong bass support from saxophone, trumpet and trombone instead of using slide guitar or harp. There was also Freddie King and Albert King who played with soul and rock musicians, such as Eric Clapton and Booker T & MGs.

In 1960s new generation of musicians has shown the interest in pre war blues and there were many influences from different directions. Political movements were emerging such as civil rights and free speech movements that helped to promote traditional African American music. Also, Jimmy Bass Music festival brought traditional music to a new audience- pre war acoustic blues. Record companies such as Yazoo Records found themselves republishing traditional blues music.

In UK blues was performed by bands such as Rolling Stones, The Animals, Fleetwood Mac, John Mayell & the Bluesbreakers. They combined the rock style with blues elements. They brought the blues to a white audience and influenced American musicians such as Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Johnny Winter, The J. Geils Band and so on…  It is quite obvious that blues influenced the development of rock music.

In 1970s a new style appeared, known as Texas rock-blues style. Guitars were used in both solo and rhythm roles and it was greatly influenced by British rock-blues bands.   Some important musicians and bands to develop the style are ZZ Top, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Johnny Winter, Stevie Ray Vaughan.

In 1980s and 1990s musicians were both using the traditional and new forms of blues and it

was only then that 1970s Texas rock-blues style became popular. Blues publications began to be distributed and many cities started to form blues societies, outdoor blues festivals, nightclubs and venues.

~ Written by Alma Konjhodzic