A protégé of John Lee Hooker, Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis was a Chicago blues institution throughout the latter half of the 20th century. Born Charles W. Thompson on March 2, 1925 in Tippo, MS, he learned to play guitar from Hooker while still a teenager, developing an insistent single-chord technique similar to that of his mentor; Davis and Hooker regularly gigged together in Detroit throughout the '40s, with the former settling in Chicago early the next decade. There he became a fixture of the West Side's Maxwell Street marketplace area, performing his distinctive brand of traditional Mississippi blues amidst the daily hustle and bustle of local merchants and shoppers; in the wake of the folk-blues revival of the early '60s, he recorded the LP Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis for Elektra, and although a fine showcase for his powerful guitar skills and provocative vocals, it failed to make much of an impact outside of purist circles. Davis continued to record sporadically in the decades that followed, and remained a constant West Side presence prior to his death on December 28, 1995. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi