81-Year-Old Bluesman Leo 'Bud' Welch To Release Debut Album

(The Blues) Mississippi bluesman Leo 'Bud' Welch is to release his debut album at the age of 81. He's been playing guitar, harmonica and fiddle since his childhood in the 1930s, but managed to be overlooked by those searching the delta for the last remaining original voices of the blues.

That changes in January, when his Sabougla Voices is launched. His label, Big Legal Mess, suggest the reason it's taken so long for him to be discovered is that he's spent most of the past 40 years performing in churches.

"The vast network of churches in Mississippi and the South offered consistent, safe venues to perform," they say. "Welch's brand of blues was becoming old fashioned and gigs were harder to come by. The churches offered a place where a musician like Leo could still play his style, just slightly modified for the gospel.

Hear the track Praise His Name here.

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