Oftentimes, a musician’s contributions to the world of music are measured by his catalog. In John Mayall’s case, a five decade career has produced an extraordinary number of blues records. As the founding member of John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers and as a solo artist, Mayall has a discography that includes over 30 studio and live albums. However, the musical acts that Mayall has inspired are another part of his legacy. Eric Clapton, Fleetwood Mac, and Cream are just a few of the acts that might not have happened without the influence of the 82-year-old “Godfather of British Blues.”
With an upcoming tour and an album set to be released next year, the legend is still finding new and exciting ways to bring the blues to audiences.
“It never really went out of style,” Mayall said in a phone interview. “Whenever someone comes into the scene and makes a splash, people just start paying more attention.”
For Mayall, the blues allows him to create a diary of what is happening in his life at a certain point in time.
“Blues allows you to express yourself emotionally, regardless of who you are and what you have been through.”
The diverse fan base that blues brings is evident when you look out at the audience at a Mayall concert. According to Mayall, this trend has been consistent throughout his career.
“They’ve always come in all shapes and sizes,” Mayall said. “Different age groups still come along.”
In terms of audience and venue size, Mayall says “it doesn’t really make much difference, as long as the audience is enthusiastic.”
While many artists who have found the longevity that Mayall has feel pressured to continue making more of the same, Mayall has always felt free to make what he thinks needs to be made.
“I’ve always had the freedom to do what I wanted. I picked guys for my band that I thought …