How Long BluesComposer: Leroy Carr / ?
No Grateful Dead recordings.
Leroy Carr, 1928
Jimmy Rushing with the Count Basie Orchestra, 193?
Joe Turner and The Varsity Seven, 1940
Jazz, Vol. 2: The Blues, Various Artists (Jimmy Yancey), 1950
Scrapper Blackwell, 1959
Odetta and The Blues, Odetta, 1962
Folk Music of Washington Square, Various Artists (Howard Bradley), 1962
The Best of the Blues, Jimmy Reed, 1963
Favorites, Jesse Fuller, 1965
Confessin' The Blues, B. B. King, 1966
Hot Tuna, Hot Tuna, 1970
Livin' on the Mountain, Del McCoury, 1971
Big Ben Sings, Scatman Crothers, 1973
Hoppkorv, Hot Tuna, 1976
Red Rocking Chair, Doc and Merle Watson, 1981
Red Rocking Chair, Doc Watson, 1982
Great Moments With B.B. King, B.B. King, 1982
Soul Brothers/Soul Meeting, Ray Charles, 1989
Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 1: 1928-1929, Tampa Red, 1991
Deeper Shade Of Blue, Del McCoury, 1993
From The Cradle, Eric Clapton, 1994
Hurry Down Sunshine, The Essential Recordings Of Leroy Carr, 1995
Down In Mississippi, Pinetop Perkins, 1998
Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 1 1928-1929, Leroy Carr, 19??
As Good As It Gets: Country Blues, Various Artists (Scrapper Blackwell and Leroy Carr), 2000
Big Boss Man (Box set), Jimmy Reed, 2001
Baby, Don't You Tear My Clothes, James Cotton, 2004
Pure Genius: The Complete Atlantic Recordings (1952-1959), Ray Charles, 2005
The !!!! Beat: Legendary R&B and Soul Shows from 1966, Vol. 5, Various Artists (Lou Rawls), 2005
Looking at Long John Baldry: The UA Years 1964-1966, Long John Baldry, 2006
Classic Piano Blues from Smithsonian Folkways, Various Artists (Speckled Red), 2008
Setlist: The Very Best of Hot Tuna Live, Hot Tuna, 2011
Original Album Classics, Hot Tuna, 2012
It is likely that this title is used in relation to two different songs performed by the Dead.
The version performed with Spencer Davis in 1989 is very similar to the song associated with Leroy Carr. This was originally recorded by Carr as How Long - How Long Blues.
The song performed in a few acoustic sets in 1970 varies considerably from the Leroy Carr song. It may well be a different song, albeit one with similarities to the Carr song. It's possible that this second version is based on the song How Long recorded by Frank Stokes.
How Long Blues was also performed by the Garcia / Saunders group on July 2, 1974 with Roger Troy sitting in on vocals.
The How Long Blues title is retained here for all versions until further information is available.
The song associated with Leroy Carr is usually credited to him. However it may be that it was an existing song when he recorded it 1928. In Screening The Blues (1968), Paul Oliver writes,
Leroy Carr, for example, is associated with the blues, How Long, How Long although earlier version of it are known by Ida Cox and Papa Charlie Jackson. Carr gave it a special quality which 'fixed' the blues in his style of singing and playing.
Ida Cox recorded How Long, Daddy, How Long in September 1925.