> Mississippi > 50 Bands / 50 States 2008 > Boston Phoenix 50 Bands 50 States



CITY: Mississippi

 Colour Revolt

All-Time Best Band: The Mississippi Sheiks
All-Time Best Solo Artist: Robert Johnson
Best New Band: Colour Revolt

As the hallowed birthplace of rock and roll, the Magnolia State is, historically speaking, lousy with phenomenal bluesmen, but short on influential bands. One exception is the Mississippi Sheiks, who were making hit records in the damn Hoover administration. The string band’s fiddle and country blues reached its apex with the multi-million-selling — in the 1930s, bitches! — “Sitting on Top of the World.” | Legendary bluesman Robert Johnson is so iconic it’s hard to separate fact from fiction in his biography, but here’s our best guesses. Probable fact: did indeed sell his soul to Beelzebub for his extraordinary gee-tar talent. Probable fiction: had nothing to do with the Ralph Macchio movie Crossroads. | Coming to you from the heart of Faulkner country, there’s both a sound and a fury to Colour Revolt. The Oxford quintet favours a British spelling, perhaps a hint of their sonically capable Radiohead-y aspirations, or a wish that they were from that other Oxford.

Video: Mississippi Sheiks

Listen: Mississippi Sheiks, "Sitting On Top of the World"

Listen: Robert Johnson, "Sweet Home Chicago"

Listen: Colour Revolt, "Naked and Red"