By: Pauline Millard
Readers should know two things about me: I am a sucker for music and good photography. You can imagine my glee then, when I found this multimedia package that the St. Louis Post-Dispatch put together about the history of blues in St. Louis.
Blues is one of those genres of music that if you don’t know a lot about it, it can seem a little hard to take in. It has a long history and an army of afficionados. Nevertheless, it’s great to listen to, once you figure out the major players.
Clearly, there are people at the Post-Dispatch who know their blues, as well they should. The blues has a long and colorful history in St. Louis, although in recent years, according to the paper, the art has been dying off. Many of the artists that spent their lives in it have been dying off, sometimes in poverty.
The blues project was headed by Gary Hairlson, an assistant director of photography who has been with the Post-Dispatch since 1999. It took a team of 15 people to complete, using everything from a videographer to a flash designer. The project — posted last month — includes a history of the St. Louis blues scene, including print stories and video interviews with many of its major players. Another section focuses on the new generation of St. Louis blues musicians. There is also a timeline about blues that dates back to 1873 when W.C. Handy was born. He is considered the father of blues and wrote the legendary, “St. Louis Blues.”
Since it is a project about music, there are lots of music clips, some of very early works. All in all, the project is a real treat for any music lover, especially if you’re trying to understand blues.
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‘The Rocky Mountain News’ Outsources Youth-Oriented Content