Magic Slim, a dynamic guitarist who helped shape the sound of Chicago’s electric blues, died Feb. 21 in a Philadelphia hospital. He was 75.Born Morris Holt in Torrance, Mississippi in 1937, Slim’s recording career ran from the sixties through to recent times, built on his peerless guitar playing, raw vocals and fondness for the stage. His influence on the blues scene runs deep and his backing group the Teardrops have been described as “the last real Chicago blues band.”He went on to forge a career that brought border–crossing recognition among the music community and, later, festival-goers. Eddie Vedder was one such fan. After hearing the bluesman wow a crowd, Vedder asked Slim to open a Pearl Jam show in Chicago back in 1994. PHOTOS: Note Perfect: The 15 Best Portrayals of Musicians in Movies Slim’s story was one of perseverance and talent. He was raised Grenada, Mississippi, where he took an early interest in music, honing his vocal talents in the church choir. As a youngster, it’s said he fashioned a guitar with baling wire from a broom, which he nailed to the wall. “Mama whooped me for that,” recalled Slim.His first love was the piano, but he switched to… Read full this story
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