Walter Brown Mcghee (1915-1996) was an articulate spokesman for the blues who, in partnership with Sonny Terry, proselytized the buoyant Piedmont-blues-style to folk audiences a decade before most ever heard of the Mississippi Delta. Though he is largely associated with the folk boom which made Sonny & Brownie familiar names worldwide, Brownie's recording career began in Chicago in 1940; the second song in this retrospective, Me and My Dog, was Brownie's first issued recording. Other reminders here of Brownie's pre-War blues career are Death of Blind Boy Fuller (written to order on the occasion of Fuller's 1941 demise) and the Fuller-influenced Pawn Shop Blues.
Tennessee born, Carolina-influenced, New York based in his folk boom glory and a Californian at the time of his death, Brownie showed a wide stylistic range from turn-of-the-century ragtime (Come On Keep It Coming) to the lyrical sophistication of such original songs as Conversation With A River. His flair for the dramatic aside and autobiographical insight augment passionate vocals and splendid guitar work in 14 performances, a moving retrospective of an artist too long taken for granted.