Bob Roberts

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The existence of country blues artists more obscure than Bob Roberts is a fact in itself; to be more obscure than Roberts would imply not having left any sort of trace, whereas the mighty Roberts has…
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The existence of country blues artists more obscure than Bob Roberts is a fact in itself; to be more obscure than Roberts would imply not having left any sort of trace, whereas the mighty Roberts has "Persian Lamb Rag" and perhaps a few other recordings floating around, all done prior to the Second World War recording ban. "Persian Lamb Rag" is the best known, having made it onto the classic Yazoo anthology entitled String Ragtime: To Do This You Gotta Know How; but while biographical tidbits were provided on other fine artists on this collection such as Jim & Bob, the Genial Hawaiians, a gag order of sorts was apparently issued on Roberts, because there is nary a word about him, as if his track was actually not even on the collection.

Meanwhile, hosts of other performers of the same name lurk in the wings, threatening to erroneously increase the size of this one's contribution to the music scene. Bob Roberts is most often confused with the guitarist and songwriter who worked in the following decade and in the '60s as well with the likes of Elvis Presley and Annette Funicello. The country bluesman Roberts performed in the early '40s at folk festivals such as the Fort Valley State College Festival, from which this scrap of information appeared: "Bob Roberts might have been from out-of-state, for his residence was simply "523 Army Lot, Macon Street," which could well have referred to nearby army camps like Fort Benning or Camp Wheeler, as (festival organizer) Edgar Clark had gone out of his way to invite wartime groups of soldiers to the festival." From the evidence on the Yazoo record, Roberts was an excellent player.