Too Tight Henry

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Too Tight Henry
Birth nameHenry Lee Castle
Georgia, United States
DiedAugust 16, 1971 (aged 71/72)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
  • Guitar
  • vocals
Associated actsBlind Blake, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Jed Davenport, Beale Street Jug Band

Too Tight Henry, born Henry Lee Castle (1899 – August 16, 1971)[1][2] was an American blues musician, who recorded four songs for Columbia Records and Brunswick Records in 1928 and 1930.


Castle was born in Georgia in 1899.[3] He played a twelve-string guitar, a common instrument with Georgia blues musicians at the time. Before moving to and residing in Memphis, Tennessee, he travelled and played music with contemporary blues musicians Blind Blake and Blind Lemon Jefferson.[3] For a period of time in the 1930s, Castle also lived in Helena, Arkansas.[2] In 1928, he recorded two sides for Columbia Records, a two-part song called "Charleston Contest", a song in which Castle talks to himself in different voices and brags about his ability on the guitar. In 1930, he recorded two more sides in Chicago, Illinois for Brunswick Records.[4] These sides show a more relaxed side to Castle, and he is accompanied by a guitarist and a harmonica player.

After these two sessions, he played in Jed Davenport's Beale Street Jug Band.[1]

Castle died in Chicago on August 16, 1971.[1][2]


Recorded October 27, 1928 for Columbia Records in Atlanta, Georgia[edit]

  • "Charleston Contest – Part 1" – 14374D
  • "Charleston Contest – Part 2" – 14374D[5][2]

Recorded October 2, 1930 for Brunswick Records[edit]

  • "Squinch Owl Moan" – 7189
  • "The Way I Do" – 7189[6]


  1. ^ a b c Edward Komara, Peter Lee (2004-07-01). "The Blues Encyclopedia". Routledge. Retrieved 2017-03-16.
  2. ^ a b c d Bastin, Bruce (1995). Red River Blues: The Blues Tradition In The Southeast. University of Illinois Press. p. 144. ISBN 9780252065217.
  3. ^ a b Paul Oliver (1984-09-27). "Songsters and Saints: Vocal Traditions on Race Records". Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 2017-03-16.
  4. ^ Brunswick Records, Ross Laird (2001). "Brunswick Records: Chicago and regional sessions". Greenwood Publishing Group. Retrieved 2017-03-16.
  5. ^ Steven Abrams. "Columbia Records 78rpm Discography". Retrieved 2017-03-11.
  6. ^ Steven Abrams. "Brunswick Records 78rpm Discography". Retrieved 2017-03-11.