Lockwood was born in 1915 in Turkey Scratch, Arkansas, and learned to play guitar from Robert Johnson, who had an off and on relationship with Lockwood's mother for about ten years. For many years, Lockwood was known as Robert Jr. Lockwood because of his professional and personal relationship with Johnson, and he played fish fries, street corners, juke joints, and house parties with Johnson, Williamson, and his longtime associate Johnny Shines around most of the Mississippi Delta.
Lockwood recorded a few 78's off and on during his early career, but was really in demand as a studio musician for most of the 50's and 60's, so he really didn't get into recording his own albums until he was in his 50's. 1970's Steady Rollin' Man was his first as a front man, but he really hit his stride in the 70's, recording a couple of albums for Trix and a tribute album to Johnson. Along the way, he mastered the 12-string guitar and really expanded his style. His own recordings also occasionally leaned toward jazz and swing and he combined all of his styles on his albums.
One of his later releases was in 1998 for Verve Records, I Got To Find Me A Woman. It is my favorite of his albums. B.B. King and Joe Louis Walker play on a couple of tracks and it's just a really cool set of songs, originals and covers of songs by his influences, Robert Johnson, Leroy Carr, and Roosevelt Sykes.
Lockwood died in 2006 at 91, still playing a regular gig in Cleveland, OH at the time he passed away. He didn't record a lot on his own, but he made the most of his opportunities. Hopefully, when time allows, I will get to do a full post on Lockwood, one of the true characters of the blues. In the meantime, here's Track 3 of our CD from Mr. Lockwood. Enjoy!