Format: NTSC All Regions
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Release Date: 2013
For decades little was known about Robert Johnson. Legend was rife with supernatural accounts of his life and his pact with the devil, and conflicting versions of his death. The Search For Robert Johnson traces the path of this most legendary of Bluesmen, a figure whose blues influenced the development of popular music in the US and UK but whose life story was shrouded in mystery. In this documentary the soul of an elusive spirit is finally pieced together. Those who come to bear witness include fellow bluesman Johnny Shines, and Honeyboy Edwards, who learned their craft from Johnson; girlfriend Willie Mae Powell (who inspired ‘Love In Vain’); and others who knew the man who folklore says sold his soul to the devil at the crossroads. In another first, the man who may be Johnson’s long-lost son is introduced. Narrator John Hammond steers us through this travelogue as he re-enacts the work of the original researchers, crisscrossing the Delta by automobile and freight car; unveiling marriage records from six decades ago; taking us to the sites of Johnson’s only two recording sessions in 1936 and 1937; and finally exploring the circumstances of Johnson’s grisly murder.