Eddie Boyd

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Eddie Boyd (1968)

Eddie Boyd (* as Edward Riley November 25, 1914 in Clarksdale , Mississippi , † July 13, 1994 in Helsinki , Finland ) was an American blues musician .


Eddie Boyd was born on a plantation in Coahoma County near Clarksdale, Mississippi . His date of birth is sometimes given as November 13, 1914 .

At the age of 15, Boyd had to flee because he had stabbed the plantation owner with a pitchfork in an argument. He taught himself to play the guitar first, then switched to the piano and made a living as a musician in the Mississippi Delta . In 1936 he moved to Memphis , where he played with the Dixie Rhythm Boys for five years .

In 1941, Boyd followed his half-brother Memphis Slim and cousin Muddy Waters to Chicago to look for better conditions. He worked in a steel mill and played in the clubs in the evenings with colleagues such as Muddy Waters, Johnny Shines and Sonny Boy Williamson I. With the latter he made his first recordings in 1945.

In 1952 Boyd had his first hits in the rhythm and blues charts with Five Long Years and 24 Hours for the JOB label ; he had financed the recordings himself. The third hit, Third Degree, followed in 1953 . In 1957 Boyd had a serious car accident that left him bedridden for three months. At that time, its popularity waned.

In 1965 Boyd performed at the American Folk Blues Festival in Europe. The success made him stay in Europe. In 1968 he recorded the album 7936 South Rhodes with Fleetwood Mac . He toured with John Mayall and made recordings with Buddy Guy and Eric Clapton .

In 1970 Boyd married a Finnish woman and stayed with her in Finland, where he worked with Jukka Tolonen , among others . Eddie Boyd recorded LPs with many European blues bands in the 1960s and 1970s, with well-known ones like Cuby & Blizzards (Netherlands) or less well-known ones like Ulli's Bluesband (West Germany). In 1980 he had a heart operation. In 1986 he performed again at the Chicago Blues Festival .

Eddie Boyd died in Meilahti Hospital in Helsinki in 1994.


  • Christian Graf, Burghard Rausch: Rockmusik Lexikon. America Africa Australia Asia. Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 1999, ISBN 3-596-13872-8 (correctly stated in the book; 3-596-13872-2 incorrectly on the cover)

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