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Biography in Context » teen pick
Find biographies of many famous Chicago blues artists—including Memphis Minnie, Little Walter, Muddy Waters, Sonny Boy Williamson, and Howlin' Wolf—from sources such as Contemporary Musicians and Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Musicians.
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Use these resources on any Chicago Public Library computer or on non-Library computers with your Chicago Public Library card.
Chicago Defender Historical Archive »
Search the complete text, including display and classified advertisements, of this nationally significant African American newspaper for the years 1910 to 1975. Searches for specific performers or performances will return the best results. (To search for articles appearing in this paper from 1999 to the present, use Black Newspapers or Illinois Newsstand.)
Chicago Tribune Historical Archive »
Search the entire text of the Chicago Tribune, including classified and display advertisements, from 1849 to 1988. Like the Chicago Defender Historical Archive, searches for specific performers or performances will return the best results. (To search for articles appearing in this paper after 1988, use Chicago Tribune (1985-present).)
Oxford Music Online »
From scholarly encyclopedia articles to quick definitions, this database is a great resource for people who are studying music or who simply want a deeper understanding of the music that they listen to.
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Featured CPL Collections and Programs
- Chicago Blues Archives »
Located in the Music Information Center at the Harold Washington Library Center, the collection includes audio and video recordings, promotional materials, artifacts, and other available blues related material. Of particular interest is a collection of demo and live recordings not commercially available and extensive materials from the Chicago Blues Festivals—including audio and video recordings of Festival performances.
- Encyclopedia of Chicago: Blues »
This article by Adam Green from the Encyclopedia of Chicago offers an introduction to the history of this musical form in the city as well as a historical map showing the spread of venues over time.
- Chicago Blues Festival »
Beginning in 1984, the Chicago Blues Festival has become the largest of the city's music festivals, drawing more than 750,000 people.
- All Music: Chicago Blues »
The All Music Guide is a diverse and extremely detailed guide to recorded music. Their guide to Chicago blues is useful for finding musician discographies.