Elmore James

Elmore James was an American blues guitarist, singer and bandleader. He was known as "King of the Slide Guitar" and was noted for his use of loud amplification and his stirring voice. For his contributions to music, James was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992. James was born Elmore Brooks in Richland, Holmes County, the illegitimate son of 15-year-old Leola Brooks, a field hand, his father was Joe Willie "Frost" James, who moved in with Leola, Elmore took his surname. He began using a simple one-string instrument strung on a shack wall; as a teen he performed at dances under the names Joe Willie James. He married Minnie Mae about 1942. James was influenced by Kokomo Arnold and Tampa Red, he recorded several of Tampa Red's songs. He inherited from Tampa Red's band two musicians who joined his own backing band, the Broomdusters, "Little" Johnny Jones and Odie Payne. There is a dispute about whether Johnson or James wrote James's signature song, "Dust My Broom". In the late 1930s, James worked alongside Sonny Boy Williamson II.

During World War II, James joined the United States Navy, was promoted to coxswain and took part in the invasion of Guam. Upon his discharge, he returned to central Mississippi and settled in the town of Canton with his adopted brother Robert Holston. Working in Holston's electrical shop, he devised his unique electric sound, using parts from the shop and an unusual placement of two DeArmond pickups. Around this time James learned, he began recording with Trumpet Records in nearby Jackson in January 1951, first as a sideman again for Sonny Boy Williamson II and for their mutual friend Willie Love and others. He made his debut as a session leader in August with "Dust My Broom", a surprise R&B hit in 1952, his backing musicians became known as the Broomdusters. James broke his contract with Trumpet Records to sign with the Bihari brothers through their scout Ike Turner, who played guitar and piano on a couple of his early Bihari recordings, his "I Believe" was a hit a year later. During the 1950s he recorded for the Bihari brothers' Flair Records, Meteor Records and Modern Records.

He played lead guitar on Big Joe Turner's 1954 top 10 R&B hit "TV Mama". In 1959, he began recording for Bobby Robinson's Fire Records, which released "The Sky Is Crying", "My Bleeding Heart", "Stranger Blues", "Look on Yonder Wall", "Done Somebody Wrong", "Shake Your Moneymaker", among others. James died of a heart attack in Chicago in 1963, as he was about to tour Europe with that year's American Folk Blues Festival, he was buried in Ebenezer, Mississippi. Phil Walden of Capricorn Records raised funds for a granite headstone for James' grave; the headstone which reads "King of the Slide Guitar", features a bronze relief of James playing guitar. It was revealed at a dedication ceremony sponsored by the Mt. Zion Memorial Fund in 1992. James was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992 as an "Early Influence" inductee. In 2012, He was honored with a marker on the Mississippi Blues Trail in Ebenezer. On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed Elmore James among hundreds of artists whose material was destroyed in the 2008 Universal fire.

James played a wide variety of "blues" similar to that of Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and some of B. B. King's work, but distinguished by his guitar's unique tone, coming from a modified hollow-body acoustic guitar, which sounded like an amped-up version of the more "modern" solid-body guitars. Waters took the Belgian blues fan George Adins to see James play in Chicago in 1959. On our way we listened to him on the radio as Big Bill Hill... was broadcasting direct from that place. I was burning to see Elmore James and before we pushed open the door of the club, we could hear Elmore's violent guitar sound. Although the place was overcrowded, we managed to find a seat close to the bandstand and the blues came falling down on me as it had never done before. Watching Elmore sing and play, backed by a solid blues band made me feel real fine. Wearing thick glasses, Elmore's face always had an expressive and dramatic look when he was real gone on the slow blues. Singing with a strong and rough voice, he didn't need a mike.

On such slow blues as "I'm Worried" – "Make My Dreams Come True" – "It Hurts Me", his voice reached a climax and created a tension, unmistakably the down and out blues. Notwithstanding that raw voice, Elmore sang his blues with a particular feeling, an emotion and depth that showed his country background, his singing was... fed, reinforced by his own guitar accompaniment, as rough and expressive as was his voice. Using the bottleneck technique most of the time, Elmore let his guitar sound as I had never heard a guitar sound before. You just couldn't sit still! You had to move... Adins witnessed James at the Alex Club, on the West Side of Chicago, wherehe always played for a dance audience and he made the people jump. "Bobby's Rock" was at that time one of the favourite numbers with the crowd and Elmore used to play for fifteen minutes and more. You just couldn't stand that hysteric sound coming down on you; the place was rocking, swinging! Many electric slide guitar players will acknowledge the influence of James's style.


Samuel John Mills

Samuel John Mills Jr. was an American preacher and missionary from Connecticut. He is known for contributing to the organization of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions and to the formation of the American Colonization Society in 1817; the latter was intended to establish a colony in West Africa as a destination for free American blacks. Samuel John Mills, Jr. was born in 1783 at Torringford, where his father Samuel John Mills was a Congregational minister. Mills attended Williams College in Massachusetts, where he organized a prayer group that held the Haystack prayer meeting, he entered Andover Theological Seminary in 1810, was licensed to preach in 1812. While one of the group that helped form the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, Mills served as a missionary in the Mississippi valley, it was being newly settled by European Americans before Indian Removal. Mills suggested formation of a national Bible society as part of the evangelical effort in the South.

In May 1816, thirty-five different bible societies met at New York and organized the American Bible Society. Mills played a leading role in the formation of the American Colonization Society in 1817, along with Dr. Robert Finley, a clergyman from New Jersey who founded the National Colonization Society and died in 1817. In 1818, following a brief stay in England, Mills sailed to the west coast of Africa to purchase land for the American Colonization Society, he embarked for the United States on May 22, died at sea. Mills's niece, Julia Sherman Mills married missionary Samuel C. Damon, their son Samuel Mills Damon became a wealthy banker. Sarah Johnson and Eileen Moffett. "Lord, Send Us". Christian History & Biography. 90: 35. Richards, Thomas C.. Samuel J. Mills, Missionary Pathfinder and Promoter. Boston, New York The Pilgrim press, 1906. Https://

Gorgeous prawn goby

Amblyeleotris wheeleri, the Gorgeous prawn-goby, is a species of goby native to tropical reefs of the Indian Ocean to the western Pacific Ocean. It can be found at depths of from 5 to 40 metres though is does not occur deeper than 15 metres, it is a commensal with alpheid shrimps, most being found in association with Alpheus ochrostriatus. This species can reach a length of 10 centimetres SL, it can be found in the aquarium trade. The specific name honours the English ichthyologist Alwynne Cooper Wheeler, curator of Fishes at the British Museum, "for his help over the years with the authors’ study of prawn-associated gobies of the Seychelles". Photos of Gorgeous prawn goby on Sealife Collection