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Alec Seward biography



Alec Seward (March 16, 1902 - May 11, 1972) Biography Seward, one of fourteen siblings, was born in Charles City County, Virginia. Seward befriended Brownie McGhee and Sonny Terry, and retained his Piedmont blues styling despite changes in musical trends. He met Louis Hayes (who later became a minister in northern New Jersey) and the duo performed variously named as the Blues Servant Boys, Guitar Slim and Jelly Belly, or The Back Porch Boys. During the 1940s and 1950s Seward played and recorded with Lead Belly, Woody Guthrie, McGhee and Terry. Around 1947 Seward, Guthrie, and Terry, recorded several chain gang related songs including "Chain Gang Special", and some other older songs adapted to having chain gang themes. They were later released on the compilation album, Best of the War Years. Under his own real name, Seward issued Creepin' Blues (1965, Bluesville) with harmonica accompaniment by Larry Johnson. Later in the decade Seward worked in concert and at folk-blues festivals. Seward died at the age of 70, in New York of natural causes, in May 1972. He is not to be confused with Eddie "Guitar Slim" Jones, James "Guitar Slim" Stephenson, Norman "Guitar Slim" Green, or Rodney "Guitar Slim Jr." Armstrong (Eddie Jones' son). Selected discography Creepin' Blues (1965) - Bluesville Late One Saturday Evening (1996) - Blues Alliance The Back Porch Boys (2002) - Delmark