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   << Blues Classroom

Viewing Guide
For your convenience, we have described the program segments as they are referenced in the Film Tie-Ins section of each lesson. To find a segment, queue up to the approximate start time and look for the starting image. Please note: This index was completed prior to each film's completion. Final versions may differ. The films Feel Like Going Home and Piano Blues were unavailable for screening at the time of publication.

Blues as African American History
Events and Time Periods in African American History
Warming by the Devil's Fire
Jim Crow discussion
Approximate Start Time: 1 min
Length: 11 min., 30 sec
Starting Image: Cotton fields

Black prison work gangs, the 1927 Mississippi River flood, and railroad building
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 3 min, 30 sec
Length: 9 min
Starting Image: Uncle and nephew looking across flood plains

Godfathers and Sons
Marshall Chess and Chuck D discuss Chicago as a destination for African Americans as well as Europeans
Approximate Start Time: 20 min
Length: 8 min
Starting Image: Otis Rush on stage playing a red guitar

The Soul of a Man
Historical footage of sharecroppers and poverty
Approximate Start Time: 18 min, 30 sec
Length: 1 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Man in overalls standing behind a truck

Civil Rights Movement footage
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 3 min, 30 sec
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Shemekia Copeland on stage

Waning of Blues Popularity in the late 1950s
The Road To Memphis
"Like Being Black Twice" segment in which B.B. King discusses the changing appeal of blues to blacks
Approximate Start Time: 48 min
Length: 2 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Like Being Black Twice (white text on black screen)


Poetry: Blues Style
Blues Themes
Red, White and Blues
"Was the UK Blues Scene Significant?" segment, which discusses what the blues is about
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 25 min
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Was the UK Blues Scene Significant (white text on black screen)

Godfathers and Sons
Koko Taylor discusses how blues for her is therapy
Approximate Start Time: 41 min, 30 sec
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Willie Dixon playing the cello

The Soul of a Man
Alvin Youngblood singing "Hard Time Killin' Floor Blues"
Approximate Start Time: 23 min
Length: 2 min
Starting Image: Archival black and white montage of women and young children

J.B. Lenoir's performance of "I've Been Down So Long"
Approximate Start Time: 49 min, 30 sec
Length: 1 min
Starting Image: J.B. in a tux in front of microphone

T. Bone Burnett's performance of "Man, Don't Dog Your Woman"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 5 min
Length: 1 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Beginning of concert footage

Eagle-Eye Cherry's performance of "Down in Mississippi"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 26 min
Length: 2 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Close up view of Earth from space

Warming by the Devil's Fire
Discussion at the end of the film about "having the blues"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 17 min, 30 sec
Length: 4 min
Starting Image: Man playing the cello


The Beat of the Blues
African Drumming
Feel Like Going Home
Segments showing tribal drumming
Film unavailable for screening


Blues Geography
Blues Regions
The Road to Memphis
"Coming Home" and "Heaven for a Black Man" segments
Approximate Start Time: 10 min
Length: 13 min
Starting Image: View of Memphis from across the river

"The White Embrace 1968" segment about the city of Memphis and Beale Street
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 6 min, 30 sec
Length: 3 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: black and white aerial of crowds on street

Godfathers and Sons
Past and present footage of Maxwell Street and the Chicago Blues Festival
Approximate Start Time: 19 min
Length: 9 min
Starting Image: Otis Rush playing a red guitar


The South, the North, and the Great Migration: Blues and Literature
The Great Migration
Godfathers and Sons
Segment in which Marshall Chess and Chuck D discuss the Great Migration to Chicago
Approximate Start Time: 20 min
Length: 8 min
Starting Image: Otis rush on stage playing a red guitar


Blues Masters: Muddy Waters and B.B. King
Muddy Waters in Performance
Godfathers and Sons
Footage of Muddy Waters playing "Hoochie Coochie Man"
Approximate Start Time: 9 min, 45 sec
Length: 1 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Album centerfold of Muddy


Blues, Urbanization, and Technology
The Meaning of the City
Godfathers and Sons
Maxwell Street
Approximate Start Time: 19 min
Length: 9 min
Starting Image: Otis Rush on stage playing a red guitar

The Road to Memphis
"Coming Home" and "Heaven for a Black Man" segments
Approximate Start Time: 10 min
Length: 10 min
Starting Image: View of Memphis from across the River

The Great Migration
Godfathers and Sons
Discussion between Marshall Chess and Chuck D of migration to Chicago
Approximate Start Time: 19 min
Length: 9 min
Starting Image: Otis Rush on stage playing a red guitar

The Soul of a Man
Depictions of the farming crisis of the 1920s, sharecropping, and tenant farming
Approximate Start Time: 13 min
Length: 29 min
Starting Image: Man behind typewriter while Skip James plays the guitar

J.B. Lenoir discusses his desire to leave the farming life
Approximate Start Time: 52 min
Length: 2 min
Starting Image: Gray-haired woman holding up a film reel


Oral Tradition and the Blues
African American Folk Music
Warming by the Devil's Fire
W.C. Handy discovering the blues and discussion of Joe Turner and black prison work gangs
Approximate Start Time: 46 min
Length: 4 min
Starting Image: Boy standing and reading

Mississippi John Hurt's performance of "John Henry"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 56 min, 30 sec
Length: 1 min
Starting Image: John Henry on the porch

Oral Tradition in Africa
Feel Like Going Home
Segments emphasizing the oral tradition in Africa and its export to the Americas
Film unavailable for screening


Playing the Blues
Defining the Blues
Red, White & Blues
"Was the UK Blues Scene Significant?" segment, in which a variety of people define the blues
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 25 min
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Was the UK Blues Scene Significant (white text on black screen)


Men, Women, and the Blues
Instruments and Gender
Warming by the Devil's Fire
Buddy talks to the boy about female blues performers
Approximate Start Time: 3 min, 30 sec
Length: 3 min
Starting Image: MC introducing Koko Taylor on stage

Red, White & Blues
"The Post-War Years" segment, which includes a discussion among British musicians about Sister Rosetta Tharpe's tour in England in the 1950s
Approximate Start Time: 9 min
Length: 10 min
Starting Image: The Post-War Years (white text on black screen)


Identity, Oppression, and Protest: To Kill a Mockingbird and the Blues
Blues Music as Protest
The Soul of a Man
J.B. Lenoir segment
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 3 min, 30 sec
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Shemekia Copeland on stage


A Snapshot of Delta Blues: Skip James and Robert Johnson
Skip James Guitar Techniques
The Soul of a Man
James performing "Devil Got My Woman"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 12 min, 30 sec
Length: 1 min
Starting Image: Black and white still of Skip on stage

James performing "I'm So Glad"
Approximate Start Time: 31 min
Length: 2 min
Starting Image: James playing the guitar in front of a microphone

Skip James Songs Covered by Other Artists
The Soul of a Man
Alvin Youngblood, Bonnie Raitt, Beck, and Lou Reed cover James' songs
Approximate Start Time: 13 min
Length: 29 min
Starting Image: Man behind typewriter while Skip James plays guitar


Folk Traditions in the Blues
Themes and Images in Blues Music
Warming by the Devil's Fire
Discussion of how the ocean equaled freedom
Approximate Start Time: 10 min, 30 sec
Length: 1 min
Starting Image: Bridge over the Mississippi

Black prison work gangs and the Mississippi River flood of 1927
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 3 min, 30 sec
Length: 9 min
Starting Image: Uncle and nephew looking across flood plains

Boy sits in a church and hears gospel music
Approximate Start Time: 37 min
Length: 4 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: White church

Robert Johnson at the crossroads
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 12 min, 30 sec
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Uncle and nephew in car

The Road to Memphis
"Saturday Night Sunday Morning" which explores the relationship between blues and the African American church
Approximate Start Time: 50 min, 30 sec
Length: 10 min
Starting Image: Saturday Night Sunday Morning (white text on black screen)

African Heritage of the Blues
Feel Like Going Home
Segments discussing the origins of blues in Africa
Film unavailable for screening


Crossroads Blues
Robert Johnson and the Crossroads
Warming by the Devil's Fire
Robert Johnson at the crossroads
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 12 min, 30 sec.
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Uncle and nephew in car

The Blues and the African American Church
Warming by the Devil's Fire
Opening scenes where the blues is connected to sin
Approximate Start Time: 1 min
Length: 5 min
Starting Image: Cotton fields

The Road to Memphis
"Saturday Night Sunday Morning" which explores the relationship between blues and the African American church
Approximate Start Time: 50 min, 30 sec
Length: 10 min
Starting Image: Saturday Night Sunday Morning (white text on black screen)


Blues Lyrics
AAB Blues Format
The Road to Memphis
"Black Spot on the Dial" in which B.B. King's performance shows the AAB format
Approximate Start Time: 28 min, 30 sec
Length: 2 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Memphis city lights

"Borrowing" from the Blues
The Road to Memphis
"Sam Phillips" segment
Approximate Start Time: 40 min
Length: 8 min
Starting Image: Sam Phillips (white text on black screen)

Origins of the Blues
Feel Like Going Home
Film unavailable for screening


Whites, Blacks, and the Blues
The Blues and the White Music Industry
The Road to Memphis
"Sam Phillips" segment
Approximate Start Time: 40 min
Length: 8 min
Starting Image: Sam Phillips (white text on black screen)

Godfathers and Sons
Marshall Chess discusses the legacy of white-owned Chess records
Segment 1:
Approximate Start Time: 6 min, 30 sec
Length: 3 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Chicago "L" Train

Segment 2:
Approximate Start Time: 32 min
Length: 9 min
Starting Image: Audio tape reel playing

White Co-Optation of the Blues
The Road to Memphis
"The White Embrace 1968" in which B. B. King discusses his increasingly white audience
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 6 min, 30 sec
Length: 3 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Black and white aerial of crowds in a street

Red, White and Blues
"The 1960s Explosion" segment
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 7 min
Length: 6 min
Starting Image: Steve Winwood on an off-white couch with floral print

"Taking It Back to America" segment
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 12 min, 30 sec
Length: 12 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Taking It Back To America (white text on black screen


The Soul of a Man
Profile of J.B. Lenoir
The Soul of a Man
Segments highlighting J.B. Lenoir
Segment 1:
Approximate Start Time: 42 min
Length: 1 hour, 28 min
Starting Image: Black and white exterior of a house across the street

Segment 2:
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 22 min
Length: 11 min
Starting Image: View of Earth from space


Finding the Blues
Cream and the Blues
Red, White and Blues
"Taking It Back to America" segment, with footage of Cream playing
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 13 min
Length: 1 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Taking It Back to America (white text on black screen)

The Soul of a Man
Skip James singing, "I'm So Glad"
Approximate Start Time: 31 min
Length: 2 min
Starting Image: Skip James playing the guitar in front of a microphone

Discussion of Cream's cover of "I'm So Glad"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 19 min, 30 sec
Length: 2 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Cream performing on stage in 1968

Blueswomen
Warming by the Devil's Fire
Segment about blueswomen
Approximate Start Time: 23 min, 30 sec
Length: 5 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Close up of woman strumming the guitar

Koko Taylor and Shemekia Copeland
Godfathers and Sons
Koko Taylor performance at the beginning of the film
Approximate Start Time: 3 min, 30 sec
Length: 3 min
Starting Image: MC introducing Koko Taylor on stage

The Soul of a Man
Copeland's cover of J.B. Lenoir's "God's Word"
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 2 min, 30 sec
Length: 1 min, 30 sec
Starting Image: Shemekia Copeland singing in front of the microphone

Hip-Hop and the Blues
Godfathers and Sons
Chuck D talks about similarities between hip-hop and the blues
Segment 1:
Approximate Start Time: 1 hour, 13 min, 30 sec
Length: 6 min
Starting Image: Juice in a record store holding an album cover

Segment 2:
Approximate Start Time: 2 hour, 27 min
Length: 4 min
Starting Image: Cannon singing into a microphone in front of a tapestry


 

 

 
 

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