a career that now spans in excess of three decades,
is one of handful of white blues musicians who was
scene at the beginning of the first blues renaissance of the
That revival, brought on by renewed interest in
folk music around the U.S., brought about career boosts for
many of the great classic blues players, including Mississippi
John Hurt, Rev. Gary Davis and Skip James.
Some critics have
described Hammond as a white Robert Johnson,
and Hammond does
justice to classic blues by combining powerful guitar and
harmonica playing with expressive vocals and a dignified stage
Within the first decade of his career as a performer,
Hammond began crafting a niche for himself that is completely
the solo guitar man, harmonica slung in a rack around
reinterpreting classic blues songs from the 1930s,'40s
Yet, as several of his mid-'90s recordings for the
Pointblank label demonstrate, he's also a capable bandleader
who plays wonderful electric guitar.
he's a multidimensional artist, one thing Hammond has never
professed to be is a songwriter.
In the early years of his
career, it was more important to him that
he bring the art
form to a wider audience by performing
classic -- in some
cases forgotten -- songs.
Now, more than 30 years later, Hammond
continues to do this,
touring all over the U.S., Canada and
Europe from his base in
northern New Jersey. Anything can
happen at a John Hammond concert,
and he selects tunes from
his vast repertoire like buckets of water from a well.
it's with a band or by himself, Hammond can do it all.
him perform live,
one still gets the sense that some of the
best is still to come from this