Under the Hood: Alvin Youngblood Hart on the Evolution of Blues Music

Alvin Youngblood Hart was born on this day in 1963 in Oakland, California.  Even though he was from the west, he grew up with a family connection to Mississippi, and Mississippi shaped his musical life.  He began playing country blues, before expanding into swing and rock and roll.  Taj Mahal once said Alvin had to have thunder in his hands to play the way he does. Since his 1996 debut, Alvin has lived up to his Youngblood name, constantly trying new things and coming at the blues from a fresh perspective.

“The thing is with most of the black music is that it’s always an evolution, you know, and I’m sure there’s people that would love to have it stand still in 1929. There’s people that would love to have it stand still in 1955. But it’s not happening and it’s never happened that way. It’s just constant evolution and I enjoy watching it happen, personally.” – Alvin Youngblood Hart