(September 5, 1907 – March 17, 1995)
Blues legend Sunnyland Slim made music over the course of eight decades, from the hard-luck Deep South of the 1920s to the enduring grit of Chicago’s South Side in the 1990s. One of the great singer-piano players of the century, Slim worked with blues greats like Ma Rainey and Little Brother Montgomery and fostered the careers of many others, most notably Muddy Waters. In a recording career stretching from 1947 to 1985, Slim chalked up an impressive catalog of over 250 songs, or "sides," as they’re known in blues parlance. His was the heart of a man "who reveled in the hardscrabble, often profane blues life, yet could see—and taught others to see—the handiwork of God in people from church sisters to streetwalkers; a man whose faith enabled him to travel the hard, dangerous road of a bluesman and yet never fall prey to bitterness, self-destruction or despair," as was revealed in the liner notes to the album Sunnyland Train.