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People talking about the book
"For many years, blues music fans have made the pilgrimage to the Mississippi Delta, an ancient land that idly sits adjacent to the mighty Mississippi River. Highway 61, the “blue highway” cuts through the heart of the delta. It was this stretch of road that countless bluesmen walked or hitchhiked, where African-Americans escaped the desperate living conditions in search of a better life in Chicago, Saint Louis, or Detroit. Highway 61 was the road where Robert Johnson supposedly sold his soul, and where Bessie Smith died. The blue highway leads straight to the heart of the blues.
Two brothers, Luc and Marc Borms, have traveled across the Atlantic ocean, and half of a country, to visit and document the Mississippi Delta. They created a guiding book that seeks to explain its culture, of which there are few.
Catfish & Cotton gives a glimpse into this distinguishing culture. Together, the brothers, who are blues musicians themselves, turned to the experiences and lives of the Delta’s natives and transplants in search of answers. What makes the delta a place of such musical distinction, despite raw appearances? And what drives so many people to love and respect the land that gave a voice to a musical genre that most accurately reflects the human condition -- the blues? "
Matt Marshall ( American Blues Scene )
"This wonderful book is the result of two Europeans who have poured their creative passions into the real musical and historical stories of yesterday's and today's black american music and life experience...knowing you cannot separate the two. The book sings with life and lessons. It is not just beautiful to look at, but is a joy to read. A superb and historical effort."
Lea Gilmore, Vocalist, Blues Historian,
Senior Social Justice Fellow, Robert W. Deutsch Foundation
"Catfish & Cotton: Driving Down The Blues Highway by brothers Luc & Marc Borms is a self-published, wonderfully illustrated account of their journey to the heart of the delta blues culture through their experiences visiting Delta landmarks and their interviewing artists, merchants, scholars and others involved in the Delta Blues scene today. This book is wonderfully illustrated by the brothers’ photography of various blues landmarks, persons and some performance shops. The layout of all this material is quite attractive and reading is enhanced by the layout and use of 4 column text where text is printed. It will be valuable as a guide book for places one might wish to visit when one travels in the Delta as well as a document of the music today and the community in which it persists and thrives in. It is a marvelous book that will appeal to anybody with an interest in the blues and the land from which it sprung. "
In a blue mood
Luc and Marc Borms are managers of “Catfish & Cotton” production company, but they are also professional musicians, living in Belgium.
Marc Borms: is a blues and gospel piano player for over 30 years now, touring and gigging with Baltimore based gospel singer Lea Gilmore for the last 15 years ... travelling all over Europe. He’s also a historian of African American culture and music and very active in photography and graphic design.
Luc Borms: is playing harp for more than 35 years in different European blues bands. Luc is also founder and president of a non profit organisation (DOUBLE DEAL vzw) that promotes the blues-harmonica in Europe. DOUBLE DEAL vzw organizes workshops in harmonica and gives support to more advanced players. During the last 7 years more than 1000 students attended the harmonica-blues-workshops and more than 700 “do-it-yourself” instruction manuals for harmonica-playing were sold.