Documentary Puts Legendary Chicago Bluesman in Spotlight

Sam Lay is a Chicago blues legend.

He’s played with many of the all-time blues greats, from Howlin’ Wolf to Little Walter to Muddy Waters.

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Lay was also a founding member of the influential Paul Butterfield Blues Band and was even on drums when Bob Dylan went electric at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965.

He’s been a mainstay of the Chicago blues scene for some 60 years and is a member of the Blues, Jazz and Rock Halls of Fame. Some have even called him “the greatest drummer of all-time” and learning the Sam Lay “double shuffle” is now obligatory for any self-respecting professional drummer.

Known for his sartorial style with his signature capes and cane, at age 82 he’s still playing, and a documentary that airs on WTTW later this week highlights his legacy. It’s called “Sam Lay in Bluesland.”

Lay and filmmaker John Anderson join host Phil Ponce in discussion.

Below, a trailer from the documentary:

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