LEGEND has it that influential bluesman Robert Johnson became a good guitarist after he sold his soul to the devil.
He was reputedly a rather mediocre player but one day turned up at his local blues club and blew the crowd away with his apparent sudden skills.
Sadly, Mr Johnson died in 1938 after his whiskey was allegedly poisoned by a fellow jealous drinker who didn't like the guitarist flirting with his partner.
But this year, on the 100th anniversary of his birth, Johnson's memory lives on with a special night at Walthamstow Cricket Club in Greenway Avenue this Friday (May 20).
Organised by the 17Blues club, the event will feature much playing of Mr Johnson's classic tunes, along with a live performance by blues band Mouthful of Grass.
Doors open at 8.30pm and entry is free, although donations to the acts are welcome.
And blues fans are in for a double treat at the cricket club this week, with the Battered Saucepan Blues Band hosting a jam night at the venue on Monday (May 23).
Indeed, the blues jam nights there have become so successful - since moving over from the Plough Inn - that they will now be held twice a month.
From now on, on the second Monday of the month the Battered Saucepan Blues Band will play hosts, with singer and guitarist Steve Rushton overseeing the jams on the fourth Monday of every month.
This Monday's gig is free and starts at 8.45pm.
And now for something completely different with news of Hurdy Gurdy and Bagpipe act Drohne, who play Loughton Folk Club on Thursday (May 19).
It's at the Loughton Club in Station Road and costs £5 – with a discount for members.
Doors are at 8pm.
Also in Essex, Waltham Abbey Folk Club lays on a Singaround jam night on Monday (May 23).
It's at the Royal Legion HQ in Brooker Road and costs £1.50p. Doors are at 8.30pm.
Tribute band Deeply Purple play the Standard Music Venue in Walthamstow on Friday (May 20).
It costs £9 with doors at 8pm. T-Rextasy play on Saturday (May 21), admission is £10.
Society play a headline set at the North Star pub in Browning Road, Leytonstone, on Thursday (May 19).
Organisers, the promotions group What's Cookin', say they're “a three-piece country rock band from West Sussex who specialise in gorgeous three part harmonies to die for.”
Former sub-mariner and accordion player Tom Lewis performs at Walthamstow Folk Club this Sunday (May 22).
The singalong fun starts from 7.30pm at Ye Olde Rose and Crown in Hoe Street. It costs £6, or £5 for concessions.
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