One hundred years ago, in the autumn of 1912, an African-American musician by the name of WC Handy published a song that would take the US by storm - Memphis Blues. It launched the blues as a mass entertainment genre that would transform popular music worldwide.
According to Sandra Ford, director of the Handy Home and Museum in Florence, AL, at the age of 10 WC Handy started making lye soap and selling it to save enough money for a guitar. When he earned enough, he proudly brought his treasure home to show his parents. His father, Charles Handy, called it the devil’s instrument and made his son exchange it for a dictionary.