Alan Harper left his home in England in 1979 on a pilgrimage to find the blues.
His journey led him to Chicago where he worked at a sandwich restaurant and headed to the city’s blues clubs at night.
On his first visit to a blues club Harper accidentally bumped into Big Walter Horton, who patted him on the arm with a “howdy.”
Harper found a treasure trove of musical heroes playing at places like The Kingston Mines and B.L.U.E.S. and The Wise Fools.
But nearly every week he would have to make a trip to the Checkerboard Lounge.
“In the Reader, every week it said Buddy Guy was going to be there,” Harper said. “I would sit there with a warm can of Old Style, waiting for Buddy Guy.”
Harper discusses his book Waiting for Buddy Guy: Chicago Blues at the Crossroads with Nick Digilio on Chicago’s WGN radio.
Listen to the interview here.