Mister Satan's Apprentice: A Blues Memoir
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Mister Satan's Apprentice: A Blues Memoir

3.85 of 5 stars 3.85  ·  rating details  ·  33 ratings  ·  5 reviews
A raw, heartfelt memoir of an unlikely collaboration between an earnest young harmonica player and a charismatic, streetwise Harlem musician.

Adam Gussow, shattered by failed love at twenty-seven, dedicated himself to blues music in an act of creative desperation.When he met Nat Riddles ("harmonica-man for all occasions"), he got what he was longing for: initiation into the...more
Hardcover, 402 pages
Published October 13th 1998 by Pantheon
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Satan and Adam used to play in a bar where I worked, in Philadelphia, in a past life. They were easily one of the most exciting and unusual acts ever to blow through that seedy roadhouse...and one of my favorites to date. Once I found out Adam was pursuing a PhD in literature on the side, I developed a full-blown crush. To my immense delight, we exchanged a few emails, mostly regarding African American literature...but I knew he was wayyy out of my league. A few years after I quit working at tha...more
Diann Blakely
Winner of the 1999 Keeping the Blues Alive Award for Literature, an honor bestowed annually by the Blues Foundation, Gussow's memoir placed him among renowned figures such as playwright August Wilson. In fact, Gussow teaches Wilson’s work in his course on blues literature--formerly at the New School in Manhattan, now at Ole Miss--and this triple-threat memoirist, streetside harp meister, and professor is currently assembling an anthology of blues poetry that will include such luminaries as Ishma...more
That British movie they made about the street musician? Not as good as this book, and I loved it. Read _Mr. Satan's Apprentice_ and enjoy; Mr. Gussow knows how to tell a story. I almost ran ought and bought a harmonica so I could play along to the passage wherein he describes learning Coltrane licks off the radio while driving on the expressway.
I have not been able to put this book down this week, staying up WAY too late most nights reading.
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