2. Satanic Music

Matt shares the tales of three musicians said to have satanic connections – only one of them is a rock star. If you thought that moral panics over demonic music started with heavy metal, wait until you hear about one of the Delta Blues’ greatest guitarists and Classical Violin’s original bad boy.

Note: Matt originally researched the Paganini story in 2010, when he stumbled across the mention of the phantom violin on a website. Checking the links to the blog entry he wrote at the time, the ones that he believes contained that part of the story – either a BBC radio documentary or the now-defunct Suite 101 – is not currently available. So, for now, this podcast and his blog entry from 2010 seem to be the only remaining sources of that story. 

This episode was written by Matthew Armstrong with music by Matthew Armstrong and production assistance from Kaylia Metcalfe.

A transcript of this episode is available here.

Show Notes and Sources:

Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Johnson#Devil_legend

Open Culture: http://www.openculture.com/2015/07/the-story-of-bluesman-robert-johnsons-famous-deal-with-the-devil-retold-in-three-animations.html

UDiscover Music: https://www.udiscovermusic.com/stories/devils-music-myth-robert-johnson/

National Public Radio: https://www.npr.org/2011/05/07/136063911/robert-johnson-at-100-still-dispelling-myths

The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/music/2011/jun/16/robert-johnson-sells-soul-devil

The Weekly Holler: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=feIaNfFONWo

Robert Johnson: Can’t you Hear the Wind Howl (documentary): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcjI2iaT7T8

Cereal at Midnight: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggzf_GxlTcE

Polyphonic: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fq75Ax_kL0

BBC Radio4: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00sfy5l

Violinstudent.com: http://www.violinstudent.com/biographies/paganini.html

Time Magazine: http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,764014,00.html

Classicfm.com: https://www.classicfm.com/composers/paganini/niccolo-gifted-violinist-deal-with-devil/

Afloat by Guy Maupassant: https://books.google.com/books?id=AcoZAAAAYAAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=afloat+maupassant&hl=en&sa=X&ei=zM50VNePLNK3ogS97YDwDw#v=onepage&q&f=true

Wonders and Marvels: https://www.wondersandmarvels.com/2014/11/the-strange-journey-of-of-niccolo-paganinis-corpse.html

Life in Italy: https://www.lifeinitaly.com/music/classical/niccolo-paganini/

Guitarra Magazine: https://www.digitalguitararchive.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/GuitarraMagazine-31.pdf

If you have a story about a ghost, some bit of folklore, or anyting else you want to share, please contact me.

Published by kayliametcalfe

Queer,loudmouth,skeptical-agnostic-pagan,book addict,coffee lover,wine drinker, SAHM,writer,editor,producer,podcaster. -She/her

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