Bluesman Dudley Taft has a different origin story than most. He wasn’t raised in the cradle of the Mississippi Delta, or the Carolinas or Texas. No, Taft first came up as a musician in early nineties Seattle– ground zero for grunge.
And yet, demonstrating life’s unpredictable twists and turns, playing with alt and grunge leaning bands Sweet Water and then Second Coming early on in his career paved the way to Taft’s current calling as a barnstorming blues rocker. Taft made his way to the blues in 2006, releasing his first album in the genre, Left For Dead, in 2010. This past October he released Skin and Bones, an album that finds him at the peak of his powers.
Today, Taft is premiering the music video for his cover of legendary musicman Johnny Winter’s “Leland Mississippi Blues.” In the video, shot on location, Taft’s car breaks down along a lonely stretch of highway, forcing him to travel by foot along Highway 61 and the Mississippi Blues Trail.
The track is scorching, placing Taft and his guitar front and center as he delivers gritty riffs. The video embraces a lonesome, southern gothic feel, and pays a proper, poignant tribute to the land of the Delta blues. Towards the end, the ghosts of Muddy Waters and Johnny Winter play beside Taft, as he stakes his claim among these venerable forebearers of the genre, acknowledging that he’s doing his part to keep a true American tradition alive for a future generation.