We tend to think of blues as the driving Chicago modern electric woe, or the front-porch bar-chord chugalugs that are just as much gospel howl as world-done-me-wrong sing-alongs. Mississippi John Hurt, who passed away on this day in 1966 existed in the space between, riding the tail-end of the neo-folk movement of the 60s, upon being re-discovered after a 20-year hiatus down in his hometown of Avalon, Mississippi. Encouraged to ship out East to ride the folk wave, he was this sweet old blues man with a kiss of ragtime lyric skills and a pick-less fingerpicking style he taught himself – wide-eyed skippable numbers that were mostly about just being happy with what you have, not with what you had, like the cathartic Sunday stroller “Since I’ve Laid My Burden Down:”

Glory, glory, hallelujah,

Since I’ve laid my burden down

No more sickness, no more sorrow

Since I’ve laid my burden down