My first-favorite "country bluesman" was Son House. His Library of Congress recordings tantalized me; his initial "rediscovery" recordings blew me away. When my adopted hometown started talking about doing "Clarksdale Walk of Fame" sidewalk markers half funded by individuals/businesses and half funded by the Walk of Fame committee, I immediately volunteered to help pay for one IF the first one would be Son House. It was.
Currently, y'all walk over it to enter my Cat Head store. Son House was the man, and this is THE book to get about his life and music.
In June of 1964, three young, white blues fans set out from New York City in a Volkswagen, heading for the Mississippi Delta in search of a musical legend. So begins Preachin' the Blues, the biography of American blues signer and guitarist Eddie James "Son" House, Jr. (1902 - 1988). House pioneered an innovative style, incorporating strong repetitive rhythms with elements of southern gospel and spiritual vocals. A seminal figure in the history of the Delta blues, he was an important, direct influence on such figures as Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson.