jerron "blind boy" Paxton
1 march 2014
Songster, busker, and itinerant bluesman
“Jerron "Blind Boy" Paxton is a master of multiple blues styles and picks like Blind Blake. He feels home in the Piedmont tradition with its ragtime influence. Country blues fans will pick up on influences like Blind Boy Fuller, and Gary Davis, but also on the swampy blues of Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta. He digs deep in the archives of the country blues, from Furry Lewis to Texas Alexander.” - The Fayetteville NC Observer
At first glance he looks like he’s playing the part of a bluesman in a Hollywood movie, dressed with theatrical retro-schtick, with a Derby hat and overalls. Amazingly, he’s not just the real deal, he may be the most sensational newcomer in the blues in many years. In a good decade maybe a rare brilliant voice will emerge to ignite the acoustic blues world, a massive new talent to take helm the future of the traditional blues. John Hammond Jr.,Taj Mahal, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Corey Harris and Keb’ Mo’ come to mind as milestone movers and shakers in their respective decades. A fabulous new blues talent as impressive as Jerron Paxton is not just rare, his extraordinary talent is almost surreal.
Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton
Songster, busker and itinerant bluesman, the living embodiment of the true blues in the 21St Century.
The young bard was born in 1989, but his vast talent rivals the greatest in the genre. He is the whole package. He’s witty, fast rhyming, poetic, fun, exciting, and wonderfully skilled as a musician and a fine singer, he is the continuation of a proud tradition, literally and figuratively. He is even the real-life son of Robert Johnson’s cousin, so you can say it’s in the blood.
Blind since age 16, the charismatic bluesman, sometimes also called “J-Dog Paxton” or “Blind Boy” Jerron Paxton”, hails from a Creole family in Watts, South Central Los Angeles, but his people come from Louisiana. He is a capable multi-instrumentalist who picks banjo and guitar, plays harmonica, piano and other instruments.
He is yet unsigned and his biggest fame has been found through the Playing for Change Foundation video II, which has catapulted him to international fame, just as it had done for slide guitarist Roberto Luti. He’s also a favorite son of the Weenie Campbell website of Country blues fans, which was a sizable career boost.
He is a joyous entertainer, humorous with a dazzling wit, a terrific storyteller, exuding an affable excitement. He told interviewer Peter Pantepinto, “All I do is play music; I’m too lazy to work.”
He masters multiple blues styles and picks like Blind Blake. He feels home in the Piedmont tradition with its ragtime influence. Country blues fans will pick up on Blind Boy Fuller, Gary Davis, but also on the swampy blues of Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta.
He digs deep in the archives of the country blues, from Furry Lewis to Texas Alexander. On the piano he can remind you of Fats Waller. He is often cited to have said that at the age of fifteen– about the time he started to go blind– that he just didn’t like anything written after 1934. He raised himself on 78s. Sound familiar? He made the cover of Living Blues Magazine (Fall 2012).
Clearly he is destined for greatness. Just give him a little time. He is very young and his career will ascend like a rocket.
Phil Wiggins - harmonica ace, who has often graced the WV Culture Center stage in past FOOTMAD concerts - referred to Jerron Paxton as ”a musical genius".
This concert series is presented with financial assistance from the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts.