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Johnny Winter: Blues Legend

Johnny Winter at Woodstock Reunion 1979It says a lot about guitarist Johnny Winter that blues great Muddy Waters sang his praises. The first time Waters heard him play live, he was blown away by Winter’s blindingly fast thumb-picked electric slide work. “He plays eight notes to my one!” Waters reportedly exclaimed.

Winter-who died at age 70 in Zurich on July 16, a few days after performing at a festival in Austria-was surprisingly humble about the virtuosity that earned him a spot on Rolling Stone‘s list of the 100 greatest guitarists ever.

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“I just hope I’m remembered as a good blues musician,” Winter said in a 2010 newspaper interview.

But Winter would be hard to forget, given both his long, startlingly white hair – like his brother and fellow musician Edgar Winter, he was born with albinism – and the high-energy guitar playing that was showcased in his appearance at the 1969 Woodstock festival.


Here are some facts about Winter and his life and career:






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Photo: Winter performing at the 1979 Woodstock Reunion, by Bob Sanderson via Wikipedia


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