Tribeca 2021: Buddy Guy: The Blues Chase the Blues Away (***)

By Dennis Hartley

(Originally posted on Digby’s Hullabaloo on June 19, 2021)

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If this straightforward, by-the-numbers documentary about blues man Buddy Guy seems destined for PBS…that’s because it is (set to premiere in July as an episode of American Masters). Not that there’s anything wrong with that; especially if it helps introduce the man and his music to a new generation of fans. A “musician’s musician” (especially for guitar players), he is one of those artists whose influence is more recognizable than his name (e.g. Hendrix, Clapton and SRV). The Louisiana-born Guy recounts how he was initially inspired by John Lee Hooker, then developed his own fiery blues style working the Chicago club scene (cutting his teeth with the likes of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and Otis Rush). Admirers like Carlos Santana and John Mayer also chip in. A solid bio of a great player.

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