photo: Dave Kaufman
R.L.’s music is part of the Hill country tradition of long, loping blues, often based on one or two chords. It’s a tradition made popular by Junior Kimbrough and R.L. Burnside. It’s mostly played on electric guitar and often with a slide, although Boyce uses his fingers. It has been said that Hill Country bluesmen are less concerned with getting it right than getting it goin’. Boyce learned by sneaking into all night parties and goat roasts in the areas to hear the masters like Burnside and Fred McDowell. When he was 15, Boyce started as a musician playing drums with Otha Turner and the Rising Sun Fife and Drum Band, the most traditional and African style of the Hill country repertoire.
Compliments of https://www.npr.org/sections/world-cafe/2018/02/08/583980305/r-l-boyce-on-world-cafe