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Blues Legend Leadbelly Talks, Then Sings About ‘Fannin Street’ [VIDEO]

Blues legend Huddie Ledbetter was born in the Mooringsport area in the late 19th century. But Leadbelly, as he later came to be known, spent a great deal of his youth in Shreveport and in one of his most famous songs, tells the story of the city’s infamous (at the time) Fannin Street and surrounding area.

In this rare recording, Ledbetter talks about growing up in the ArkLaTex as the son of a cotton farmer, recalling the fascination and mystery of “Fannin Street, a row of saloons, brothels, and dance halls in the Bottoms.” He also tells how, as a young man, he was forever influenced by the musicians paying in the section of Shreveport now known as Ledbetter Heights.

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