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Book Review – The Blues: Why It Still Hurts So Good

By Richard Ludmerer
In CD Reviews INDIE Blues
Jan 25th, 2017

Book Review

The Blues: Why It Still Hurts So Good

By Marie B. Trout, PhD

Dr. Marie Trout has written a book about me. If you are reading this then it’s probably about you too. Why do I/we love the blues?

The book starts “where a study of the blues normally ends. It is written with the assumption that the reader has an interest in, and is well aware of, the history of the blues and those who created it”. “Ultimately this book is a tribute to blues music and to those who birthed it…that the blues contains wisdom…to heal rather than to hate and to connect rather than isolate. It is in the spirit of being its servant that I have entered into this exploration”.

Trout tells us who we are and why we love the Blues. Trout says the typical Blues Boomer is white, between the ages of 45 and 70, predominately male, better educated with a two or four year degree, has a higher rate of home ownership, and financially better off than average.

Trout goes on to explain “what blues does to us”. She answers many questions including “Why is it so important to current blues fans that the genre lives and to share their love of it with others”. The idea of being on ones own in the world has made it difficult for us emotionally and so we connect to our own feelings, and connect to others by listening to the blues. It is also entertaining and a fun way to escape.

Trout understands “how blues fans live for the weekends”, that “it makes sense that a couple spends their vacations traveling on blues cruises…and why someone might spend hours every week volunteering for the local blues society…and why so many of us do whatever we can to work for the blues”.

I’m simplifying it way too much but she is really insightful. Thanks Dr. Trout for saving me thousands of dollars worth of therapy.

In conclusion I promise to purchase two additional copies of this book. One I will send to my older brother (by four years) and the other copy to my younger sister (by four years). If they read this book they may better understand me.

Richard Ludmerer

EDITORS NOTE: See Marie Trout during the International Blues Challenge in Memphis on 2/4/2017 2:15pm at Alfred’s on Beale Street for the Industry Keynote Panel “Blues as a Healer” 

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