R.L. Burnside

R. L. Burnside (November 23, 1926 – September 1, 2005) was an American blues singer, songwriter and guitarist. He played music for much of his life but received little recognition before the early 1990s. In the latter half of that decade, Burnside recorded and toured with Jon Spencer, garnering crossover appeal and introducing his music to a new fan base in the punk and garage rock scenes.

Burnside was born in 1926 to Earnest Burnside and Josie Malone, in either Harmontown, College Hill, or Blackwater Creek, all of which are in the rural part of Lafayette County, Mississippi, near the area that would be covered by Sardis Lake a few years later. His first name is given variously as R. L., Rural, Robert Lee, Rule, or Ruel. His father left the family early on, and R. L. grew up with his mother, grandparents, and several siblings.

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