HENRY TOWNSEND
 


At 98 years old, Henry Townsend is the oldest living Blues recording artist.. Along with Honeyboy Edwards, he is one of the only living connections to the legendary Robert Johnson. Henry Townsend moved to St. Louis at the age of 9 and worked as a shoe shiner, fronting for a bootlegging operation in his youth. He started performing on the street in his early teens and recorded his first record in 1929. He has recorded professionally every decade since the 1920s. Recognized as a "master artist", Mr. Townsend received the NEA’s National Heritage Award in 1985.

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