Hound Dog Taylor


Hound Dog Taylor, hand-illustrated here in Chicago, 1971 with his Kawai S180 four pickup guitar, age 56.

Theodore Roosevelt “Hound Dog” Taylor was a Chicago blues guitarist and singer.
He was born in Natchez, Mississippi, in 1915. He first played the piano and began playing the guitar when he was 20. He moved to Chicago in 1942.

He had a condition known as polydactylism, which resulted in him having six fingers on both hands. As is usual with the condition, the extra digits were rudimentary nubbins and could not be moved.
One night, while drunk, he cut off the extra digit on his right hand using a straight razor.

He became a full-time musician around 1957, but remained unknown outside the Chicago area, where he played small clubs in black neighborhoods and at the open-air Maxwell Street Market.
He was known for his electrified slide guitar playing (roughly styled after that of Elmore James), his cheap Japanese Kawai/Teisco guitars, and his raucous boogie beats.
In 1967, Taylor toured Europe with the American Folk Blues Festival, performing with Little Walter and Koko Taylor.

Bruce Iglauer (then a shipping clerk for Delmark Records) tried to persuade his employer to sign Taylor to a recording contract.
In 1971, having no success in getting Delmark to sign Taylor, Iglauer used a $2,500 inheritance to form Alligator Records, which recorded Taylor’s debut album, “Hound Dog Taylor and the HouseRockers”. The album was recorded in just two nights.

It was the first release for Alligator, which eventually became a major blues label.

The band became especially popular in the Boston area, where Taylor inspired the young George Thorogood who became a roadie for Taylor’s band.

Taylor died of lung cancer in 1975, age 60.

In 1984, Taylor was posthumously inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame.

Black Keys founder and guitarist Dan Auerbach – who plays one of Hound Dog’s guitars on the Black Keys album, Delta Kream, released in May 2021 – says, “I know for a fact I wouldn’t be in this business if Bruce hadn’t released those first two Hound Dog Taylor records.
The fire Bruce Iglauer captured on those records is the magic place I’m reaching for every time I’m in my studio.”

#HoundDogTaylor, #ChicagoBlues, #GeorgeThorogood, #PaulKing, #PaulKingArtwerks, PaulKingArt.com

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All prints are produced using Giclee printing process which is used for archival art reproduction. This process uses fade-resistant archival pigment-based ink which lasts over 100 years. All prints are printed on 310GSM, Luxurious mould-made, 100% cotton rag Archival Certified watercolor paper.

Archival Conservation Mat is included with your purchase. Mat is a high quality, 4 ply (1/16″) surround mat. These frame mats are acid-free & Lignin-free made with 100% virgin alpha-cellulose surface, core and backing papers. So your caricature with mat will fit into a standard comparable frame either “20” x 24″ or “16” x 20″ depending on the print size, (frame not included). Price also includes a Backer Board.

32″ x 40″ stretch canvas print is produced by Giclee printing process and are hand stretched over heavy duty American made white pine. The canvas print is varnished twice after printing. The canvas prints are ready to hang (complete with hanging wire).

Additional information

Weight .25 lbs
Dimensions 16 × 20 × .25 in
Print Size

32" x 40" Stretched Canvas Print $495, 20" x 24" Stretched Canvas Print $330, 11" x 14" Watercolor Print $95, 16" x 20" Watercolor Print $185