March 27, 1905|
Nashville, Tennessee, United States
|Died||April 29, 1935
Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
Leroy Carr (March 27, 1905 – April 29, 1935) was an American blues singer, songwriter and pianist who developed a laid-back, crooning technique and whose popularity and style influenced such artists as Nat King Cole and Ray Charles. He first became famous for "How Long, How Long Blues" on Vocalion Records in 1928.
Life and career
Carr was born in Nashville, Tennessee, but raised in Indianapolis, Indiana. Although his recording career was cut short by an early death, Carr left behind a large body of work. Some of his most famous songs include "Blues Before Sunrise" (1932), "Midnight Hour Blues" (1932), and "Hurry Down Sunshine" (1934). He had a long-time partnership with guitarist Scrapper Blackwell. His light bluesy piano combined with Blackwell's melodic jazz guitar worked to attract a sophisticated black audience. Carr's vocal style moved blues singing toward an urban sophistication, influencing such singers as T-Bone Walker, Charles Brown, Amos Milburn, Jimmy Witherspoon, Ray Charles among others.
- Allmusic biography
- Russell, Tony (1997). The Blues: From Robert Johnson to Robert Cray. Dubai: Carlton Books Limited. pp. 52–53. ISBN 1-85868-255-X.
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- Keil, Charles (1991). Urban Blues. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. pp. 65–67, 107. ISBN 0-226-42960-1.
- Larkin, Colin. "Carr, Leroy". Encyclopedia of Popular Music. Oxford University Press.
- Wald, Elijah. Escaping the Delta: Robert Johnson and the Invention of the Blues. HarperCollins, 2004. ISBN 0-06-052423-5