Edward Riley Boyd known as Eddie Boyd (November 25, 1914–July 13, 1994) was a blues piano player born on Stovall’s Plantation near Clarksdale, Mississippi, where Muddy Waters also lived. He moved to the Beale Street district of Memphis, Tennessee in 1936 where he played piano and guitar with his group, the Dixie Rhythm Boys. Boyd followed the great migration northward to the factories of Chicago in 1941.
He wrote and recorded the hit songs “Five Long Years” (1952), “24 Hours” (1953), and the “Third Degree” (co-written by Willie Dixon, also 1953). Boyd toured Europe with Buddy Guy’s band in 1965 as part of the American Folk Blues Festival. He later toured and recorded with Fleetwood Mac and John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers.
Tired of the racial discrimination he experienced in the United States, he first moved to Belgium, then settled in Finland in 1970. He recorded ten blues records in Finland, the first being Praise to Helsinki (1970). He married his wife, Leila, in 1977. His last blues gig took place in 1984. After that he performed only gospel.
Boyd died in 1994 in Helsinki, Finland, just a few months before Eric Clapton released a chart-topping blues album that included Boyd’s “Five Long Years” and “Third Degree”.
Any blues artist born between about 1915 to 1940 or so you can bet was black. Just with anecdotal evidence similar to this one citing from last.fm you can surmise the musician was born in the south and probably very poor, disadvantaged, with very hard farm and plantation labor not very far away in their life. More than a little likely they were descendants of or direct descendants of slaves. Discrimination was common and injustice, inequality, and prejudice.
I believed that God looked down on this and blessed the victims and sealed the fates of the unjust society that existed at that time. After all what can a few poor blacks do with a guitar and a piano? No TV, little radio, little money but only a social network of people. Churches , communities, days off with picnics, hot nights spent outside with neighbors. They had no one to appeal to and stand up for them in any regular or predictable fashion like the whining we hear from Muslim immigrants. The constant drumbeat of court cases and CAIR complaints from people who don't even have it 1/10th as bad as these black men.
Yet the God of music looked down and blessed their minds and their hands. Little by little a billion dollar industry was built and from that sprang a multi-billion dollar industry of rock and roll and the rest is history. All the big names you have known and loved in the 70's, 80's , 90's until now sprang from the hardship and harshness and misery of pre-MLK mindsets.
I am still waiting to see the glorious contributions to society that all the 'suffering' Muslims around the US are going to make. But their column of talent and contribution is still completely blank. All I see are shaking fists, insidious attempts to breach our Constitution, threats of war and debasing hatred of anything non-Muslim.
The prophet Micah in the Old Testament said "But as for me, I will watch expectantly for the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation. My God will hear me." The Lord does not fail when you wait upon him. Now what you do with one of the blessing of God is a man's test. Talent can be used for good or for evil celebration of depravity. See now what men and women of both races have done with their freedom. It sometimes becomes a noose in which your sentence is to die of a drug overdose or a disease of a immoral lifestyle. Used rightly the result is your foot is tapping the entire time the songs are playing!