Ben Wiley Payton | Diggin' Up Old Country Blues

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Charley Patton Son House Tommy Johnson

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United States - Mississippi

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Blues: Delta Style Blues: Acoustic Blues Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Diggin' Up Old Country Blues

by Ben Wiley Payton

Blues in the style of its pioneers from the Mississippi Delta.
Genre: Blues: Delta Style
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Barn Song
3:45 $0.99
2. The Jolly Plowboy
3:58 $0.99
3. Shake Me Up Inside
4:19 $0.99
4. Boogie Child
5:59 $0.99
5. Sharecropper Blues
5:37 $0.99
6. My True Love
4:13 $0.99
7. Now That You’re Gone
5:12 $0.99
8. Back With My Baby Again
3:38 $0.99
9. Opportunity
4:19 $0.99
10. Lou Ida James
4:20 $0.99
11. Glad To See The Rising Sun
3:44 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Ben Payton was born in tiny Coila, Mississippi, in the hill country just east of the Delta. His early musical influences included his grandmother Mabel Johnson’s gospel piano playing and his Uncle Joe Birch’s blues guitar. When in his mid-teens, Ben and his family moved to Chicago, where Ben soon became active in the city’s blues scene.

He worked regularly with Bobby Rush and Joe Evans and the Supersonics, who backed many prominent artists as the house band at clubs including Peyton Place, the Green Bunny, and High Chaparral. Ben also played in the R&B bands The Oops and Womb From the Tomb.

In 1970 Ben traveled to Morocco with jazz pianist Randy Weston, and stayed for a six-month engagement at a club. Ben was part of the R&B group Chicago Sounds, which opened the show and also backed Weston.

Back home in Chicago, Ben worked with artists including Eddie Shaw and the Wolf Gang, Junior Wells, Fenton Robinson, Little Mack Simmons, Barkin’ Bill Smith, Taildragger, Alvin Cash, Eddie C.. Campbell, Bobby King, Big Moose Walker, Muddy Waters Jr., Vince McCollum, Tony Gooden, Doug McDonald, Ron Harris, and Ike Anderson.

In 1977 Ben left the music scene but performed occasionally. It wasn’t until 2002, after he moved back to his home state of Mississippi, that he returned to his roots performing Delta-style blues.

Ben Payton's voice resonates with a passion for life and his skills as a guitarist evoke the tradition of the original Delta blues greats such as Robert Johnson, Tommy Johnson, Charley Patton, and Son House. Yet Payton has a style all his own.



to write a review

Jerry Daly

A "new" voice
I heard Barn Song on Sirius' blues channel and fell in love with the easy-going, friendly, love-for-life feeling of the song. It took me a while to track down the album, but it was well worth the effort.

While Payton has a distinctive style, if you were trying to classify him, he's a cross between Keb Mo and Taj Mahal. The lyrics are refreshing. The happy songs make you grin, the sad songs make you think. If there is such a thing as contemporary Delta blues, this is it. He has a good voice and solid blues guitar style makes you tap your foot, without overpowering the song.

I hope he puts out another album soon, or comes up to the Washington, D.C. area so I can catch a concert.