Been Here and Gone: A Memoir of the Blues-David Dalton-Hardcover

$20.00
Deborah Herman

Been Here and Gone is a highly personal panorama of the century as seen and experienced by one of the most remarkable figures in recent literature. It is at once a wildly inventive epic, a heartfelt testament to the people and places of a vanishing era, and an invaluable contribution to the literature of – music and popular culture that will fascinate blues fans, history buffs, and general readers alike. If Coley Williams’ story (to quote the old son) was nearly the “Blues the WorldForgot,” then Been Here and Gone is just the tonic we need to refresh our memories and remind ourselves of the vitality of this music and the people who have lived it. Here before us is the American Century, set to the tune of American music. Can I tell you about the blues? Baby, I was born with the blues…

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Can I tell you about the blues?
Baby, I was born with the blues…

So begins the fictional memoir Been Here and Gone, the extraordinary story of an all-but-forgotten bluesman, Coley Williams. A backup musician to some of the most famous and infamous figures in the annals of blues music, and a former recording artist in his own right, Williams had a backstage pass to a world that most of us could never even imagine. In 1998 at the astonishing age of one hundred and two, Williams agreed to tell his tale for the first time. We can only be thankful for the fruits this “collaboration” with renowned author David Dalton has yielded: as funny, furious and funky as a lick on a talking guitar, Dalton’s rhythmic prose captures the inimitable voice of a man who walks it like he talks it without missing a beat.

Review

“David Dalton may be the best damn music writer alive…This is a must read for any true fan of the blues and a fun read for anyone, even those not musically inclined.” — Gadfly Magazine

“If Charles Dickens and Memphis Minnie had a child, this is how he would write.” — Stanley Booth

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