A Debt To The Blues

It’s common knowledge that the vast majority of popular music owes a debt to American blues, but few have set about repaying it with Scott Ainslie’s sense of purpose…Spend a little time talking with him, and you’re going to learn something.

Ainslie shows not only how the music feels now, but how it felt then, hoping to convey each song’s “throw weight – how hard it would have hit someone the 1930s when it was sung.”

“When I was 15,” Ainslie says, “you had to decide whether you were gonna be in front of the police dogs or behind them, because there was no grey area when it came to civil rights.  These people either have a right to live like we do or they don’t.”

In that spirit, forty years later Scott Ainslie attempts to, in sharecropper parlance, “settle accounts.”

Michael Witthaus

Claremont Eagle Times, Claremont NH

Scott Ainslie

Born in Rochester NY in 1952, Scott Ainslie has been playing music on something since he was three years old. A guitarist since 1967 with powerful appreciation for and apprenticeships with elder black and white musicians in different musical traditions, Ainslie carries a portion of them forward in his own traditional blues performances and songwriting.

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