b. 27 September 1928, Montgomery, Alabama, USA, d. 12 February 1995, Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Like Little Sonny Willis, young George received his first harmonica as a Christmas present when he was six, along with an apple and an orange. Although he heard John Lee ‘Sonny Boy’ Williamson’s records, he was largely a self-taught musician until he arrived in Chicago in September 1949. There he befriended Little Walter, who helped him with harp selection and how to find keys in different positions. In 1951 he linked up with his next-door neighbour, J.B. Hutto, and with Eddie ‘Porkchop’ Hines on percussion, the group played at weekends on Maxwell Street market. However, work was scarce, so Mayweather joined Bo Diddley and for a time alternated between both groups. He then formed a group with Eddie Taylor, refusing Walter’s offer to replace him in Muddy Waters’ band. He recorded with J.B. Hutto on the Chance session that produced ‘Combination Boogie’ and ‘Pet Cream Man’, and with Eddie Taylor on ‘You’ll Always Have A Home’ and ‘Don’t Knock At My Door’. In the late 80s Mayweather moved to Boston where he established himself at the 1369 Jazz Club. Whup It!, recorded with the nucleus of Luther Johnson’s Magic Rockers, consists almost entirely of Chicago blues standards by Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, Jimmy Rogers and Little Walter, and just one original, ‘Cheatin’ On Me’. It represents an accurate and fitting memorial. He died of liver cancer in 1995.
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