The Best Blues Music of 2017

Zumic's favorite blues music of the year. From story-tellers to guitar-gunslingers, you know the blues got soul!
Zumic Staff

by Zumic Staff

Published November 16, 2018

This is part of our series, The Best of the Best Music of 2017.

The story of the blues goes back farther than written history, and it will go on for as long as people play music.

2017 was an incredible year for the blues, with strong albums from established stars like Taj Mahal and Keb' Mo's TajMo, Robert Cray & Hi Rhythm, Gov't Mule's Revolution Come... Revolution Go,  Elvin Bishop's Big Fun Trio, North Mississippi Allstars' Prayer for Peace, Kenny Wayne Shepherd's Lay It On Down, Van Morrison's covers-filled Roll With The Punches, and sensational new live and archival material from The Rolling Stones, Joe Bonamassa, Jeff Beck, George Thorogood, Gary Clark Jr., The Wood Brothers, and the Grateful Dead. 

Among the very best and most exciting tracks came from the star-loaded collaborative projects We're All In This Together from Walter Trout, the aptly titled American Epic Sessions from Jack White with Elton John, Alabama Shakes, and Stephen Stills (just to name a few)

Rising stars like Southern Avenue, Valerie June, The Cash Box Kings, Marcus King, Samantha Fish, Aaron Kelock, Cat Clyde, Son Little are paving a way for themselves and advancing the genre in their own ways that continue to keep us tuned in.  We also think outside the box by including African blues from the bands Tamikrest, Tinariwen, and Songhoy Blues (with Iggy Pop!) as well as a couple South American bands, Anderson Camelo, Uirá Cabral, and Ari Frello.  Enjoy!

"2017 Best Blues" Song List:

  • Southern Avenue - "Peace Will Come"
  • Southern Avenue - "Don't Give Up"
  • Walter Trout, Joe Bonamassa - "We're All In This Together (feat. Joe Bonamassa)"
  • Walter Trout, Joe Louis Walker - "Crash And Burn (feat. Joe Louis Walker)"
  • Walter Trout, Warren Haynes - "The Sky Is Crying (feat. Warren Haynes)"
  • Walter Trout, Randy Bachman - "Got Nothin' Left (feat. Randy Bachman)"
  • Valerie June - "Shakedown"
  • Gov't Mule - "Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground"
  • Taj Mahal, Keb' Mo' - "Don't Leave Me Here"
  • Taj Mahal, Keb' Mo' - "She Knows How To Rock Me"
  • Taj Mahal - "High Water Everywhere, Part 2"
  • Elton John, Jack White - "2 Fingers of Whiskey - "Music from The American Epic Sessions"
  • Alabama Shakes - "Killer Diller Blues - "Music from The American Epic Sessions"
  • Christine Pizzuti - "Last Kind Words"
  • Stephen Stills - "Come On In My Kitchen"
  • Robert Cray, Hi Rhythm - "Honey Bad"
  • Robert Cray, Hi Rhythm - "Just How Low"
  • Robert Cray, Hi Rhythm - "The Same Love That Made Me Laugh"
  • Elvin Bishop - "Keep On Rollin'"
  • Elvin Bishop - "It's You, Baby"
  • Elvin Bishop - "It's All Over Now"
  • The Cash Box Kings - "House Party"
  • The Cash Box Kings - "Build That Wall"
  • The Cash Box Kings - "Blues For Chi-Raq"
  • The Cash Box Kings - "If You Got A Jealous Woman Facebook Ain’t Your Friend"
  • Gregg Allman - "I Love The Life I Live"
  • Gregg Allman - "Love Like Kerosene"
  • Robert Plant - "Keep It Hid"
  • All Them Witches - "Internet"
  • Gary Clark Jr. - "When My Train Pulls In - "Live"
  • The Marcus King Band - "Slip Back"
  • Jeff Beck, Steven Tyler - "Train Kept A-Rollin' (feat. Steven Tyler) - "Live At The Hollywood Bowl"
  • Jeff Beck, Buddy Guy - "Let Me Love You (feat. Buddy Guy) - "Live At The Hollywood Bowl"
  • Samantha Fish - "You'll Never Change"
  • Samantha Fish - "Crow Jane"
  • The Rolling Stones - "I Can't Be Satisfied - "Top Gear / 1964"
  • The Rolling Stones - "I'm Moving On - "The Joe Loss Pop Show / 1964"
  • The Rolling Stones - "I Wanna Be Your Man - "Saturday Club / 1964"
  • The Rolling Stones - "Mona - "Blues In Rhythm / 1964"
  • Willie Nelson, Tony Joe White, Leon Russell, Jamey Johnson - "God's Problem Child"
  • Van Morrison - "Mean Old World"
  • Van Morrison - "Roll With The Punches"
  • Van Morrison - "How Far From God"
  • Van Morrison - "Bring It On Home To Me"
  • Van Morrison - "Ride On Josephine"
  • George Thorogood - "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer - "Live From Rockline"
  • Dee Dee Bridgewater - "Why (Am I Treated So Bad)"
  • Kenny Wayne Shepherd - "Down For Love"
  • Kenny Wayne Shepherd - "Ride Of Your Life"
  • Kenny Wayne Shepherd - "Hard Lesson Learned"
  • Walter Trout, Kenny Wayne Shepherd - "Gonna Hurt Like Hell (feat. Kenny Wayne Shepherd)"
  • Aaron Keylock - "Down"
  • Aaron Keylock - "Sun's Gonna Shine"
  • Cat Clyde - "Move Along"
  • Cat Clyde - "The Man I Loved Blues"
  • Son Little - "ASAP"
  • A.J. Croce, Vince Gill - "Name Of The Game"
  • Lizz Wright - "Barley"
  • Lizz Wright - "Singing In My Soul"
  • Eric Bibb - "Delta Getaway"
  • Eric Bibb - "Refugee Moan"
  • Eric Bibb - "With A Dolla' In My Pocket"
  • Otis Taylor, Jerry Douglas, Ron Miles - "Twelve String Mile"
  • Otis Taylor - "Jump out of Line"
  • Son Volt - "Cherokee St"
  • Robin Trower - "If You Believe in Me"
  • Justin Townes Earle - "If I Was The Devil"
  • Ronnie Baker Brooks, 'Big Head' Todd Mohr - "Doing Too Much (feat. 'Big Head' Todd Mohr)"
  • Ronnie Baker Brooks, Lonnie Brooks - "Twine Time (feat. Lonnie Brooks)"
  • North Mississippi Allstars - "Need to Be Free"
  • North Mississippi Allstars - "Deep Ellum"
  • North Mississippi Allstars - "You Got to Move"
  • Sean Chambers - "Trouble & Whiskey"
  • Monster Mike Welch, Mike Ledbetter - "Cry for Me Baby"
  • Vin Mott - "Don't Make Me Laugh"
  • Garland Jeffreys - "Schoolyard Blues"
  • Cary Morin - "Cradle to the Grave"
  • Big Daddy Wilson - "Cross Creek Road"
  • Dave Keyes - "Travelling Riverside Blues"
  • The Wood Brothers - "Trouble in Mind - "Live"
  • Ronnie Earl & The Broadcasters - "Ain't That Loving You"
  • Songhoy Blues, Iggy Pop - "Sahara"
  • Tamikrest - "Manhouy Inerizhan"
  • Tinariwen - "Tiwàyyen"
  • Tinariwen - "Sastanàqqàm"
  • Anderson Camelo - "In the Wrong Side of the River"
  • Jade Bird - "Grinnin' in Your Face"
  • Ari Frello One Man Band - "61 Highway Blues"
  • Ari Frello One Man Band - "Nobody's Fault but Mine"
  • Uirá Cabral - "Never Can Tell"
  • Grateful Dead - "Good Mornin' Little Schoolgirl - "Live at P.N.E. Garden Auditorium, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada 7/29/66"
  • Hard Working Americans - "Mission Accomplished"
  • Dan Zanes, Claudia Eliaza - "New York City"
  • Raul Midon - "Pedal to the Metal"
  • Nona Hendryx, Gary Lucas - "Sure 'Nuff 'N Yes I Do"
  • Changing Tunes - "Dark Night of the Soul"
  • Chuck Berry - "Big Boys


Tell us what you think!



Here a big timeline of music genres we put together to help categorize all these tracks:

Aaron Keylock A.J. Croce Alabama Shakes All Them Witches Anderson Camelo Ari Frello One Man Band Big Daddy Wilson 'Big Head' Todd Mohr Buddy Guy Cary Morin Cat Clyde Changing Tunes Christine Pizzuti Chuck Berry Claudia Eliaza Dan Zanes Dave Keyes Dee Dee Bridgewater Elton John Elvin Bishop Eric Bibb Garland Jeffreys Gary Clark Jr. Gary Lucas George Thorogood Gov't Mule Grateful Dead Gregg Allman Hard Working Americans Hi Rhythm Iggy Pop Jack White Jade Bird Jamey Johnson Jeff Beck Joe Bonamassa joe louis walker Justin Townes Earle Keb' Mo' Kenny Wayne Shepherd Leon Russell Lizz Wright Lonnie Brooks Mike Ledbetter Monster Mike Welch Nona Hendryx North Mississippi Allstars Otis Taylor Randy Bachman Robert Cray Robert Plant Robin Trower Ron Miles Ronnie Baker Brooks Ronnie Earl Samantha Fish Sean Chambers Songhoy Blues Son Little Son Volt Southern Avenue Stephen Stills Steven Tyler Taj Mahal Tamikrest The Cash Box Kings The Jerry Douglas Band The Marcus King Band The Rolling Stones The Wood Brothers Tinariwen Tony Joe White Uirá Cabral Valerie June Van Morrison Vince Gill Vin Mott Walter Trout Warren Haynes Willie Nelson
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