To call Scott Ainslie a musician is to shortchange his abilities; along with being a world class blues guitar player, Ainslie counts himself an author, historian, storyteller, and teacher.
The Brattleboro, Vermont, resident – whose roots run deep right here in Virginia – was introduced to the blues as a teenager. Since that foundational moment when he was fifteen, Ainslie has maintained a passionate love affair with early American blues music, going so far as to transcribe the original works of the legendary Robert Johnson in his book Robert Johnson: At The Crossroads and produce an instructional DVD on Johnson’s playing techniques.
Ainslie has also released five recordings, won grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the North Carolina Arts Council, and has traveled the U.S. and Canada to share his brand of American folk music.
Recently, Ainslie released his latest record, The Last Shot Got Him, a collection of tunes originally recorded in the early twentieth century by such luminaries as Mississippi John Hurt, Robert Johnson, Fats Waller, and more.
Ainslie I corresponded by email this week and I must admit to being transfixed by his responses to my questions. His understanding and appreciation of musical history virtually seeped through my monitor.