T Model Ford

Blues singer and guitarist T-Model Ford was born as James Lewis Carter Ford in 1920 in the small rural town of Forest, Mississippi. By age eleven he was plowing a field behind a mule on his family's farm, worked at a local saw mill in his early teens and eventually became a truck driver for a bigger lumber company. In his 20s he was sentenced to ten years on a chain gang for murder but, luckily, was released after serving only two years. He didn't even pick up a guitar until he was 57 and immediately began developing his own self-taught style. (Fellow musicians have referred to his playing as "in the key of T" because not only is he unable to read music, his entire sense of tuning and rhythm is completely unique.) After becoming a regional legend of sorts, working from his adopted hometown of Greenville, MS, Ford signed to the then-upstart blues label Fat Possum in 1997 and recorded his stunning debut album, "Pee-Wee Get My Gun," later that year. On it's release he was thrust into the spotlight, garnering international critical acclaim. Touring on a nearly full-time basis ensued and his hypnotic presence as well as his raw and ragged Delta style and razor-sharp lyrics helped his stature as a legitimate blues legend grow by leaps and bounds. Over the next six years Ford recorded three more albums and an EP for Fat Possum, and played hundreds of shows worldwide. He was also prominently featured in the highly regarded blues documentaries "You See Me Laughin'," (2005) and "M For Mississippi" (2008). He began to cut back his touring schedule in 2002, but since having a pacemaker put in in 2008 has hit the road harder than ever (in fact, he was back out playing within three months of that operation). In 2008 he also began working with the Seattle- based down 'n dirty juke blues trio GravelRoad, who have since become his permanent backing band. Now regularly touring upwards of five times a year, even still selectively playing lengthy sets that have been known to go for upwards of 2 or 3 hours when the mood strikes, he is--more than ever--a blues force to be reckoned with. In late 2008 Ford recorded the album Jack Daniel Time for the Mississippi-based blues label Mudpuppy Records and toured across the US and Europe in support of it for most of 2009. T-Model Ford's latest disc, The Ladies Man (on the Los Angeles-based rock label Alive Natural Sound), was released in January 2010. Despite being temporarily sidelined by a stroke in April, he is already back in action and just finished the fourth of five scheduled "90th

Birthday Tours" that will see him play in over 20 states and Sweden this year.

T Model Ford also played at...