The fingerprints of Otis Rush’s music are all over the blues of his Chicago contemporaries and those who have followed and studied them since his initial heyday in the 1950s. In the early 1960s, fledgling artists like Mike Bloomfield, Paul Butterfield, Elvin Bishop, Nick Gravenites, Harvey Mandel and Steve Miller sang his praises and his songs. By the late 1960s this blues audience for Otis was international. If John Mayall and Eric Clapton weren’t paying musical tribute, then Peter Green and Santana were via “Black Magic Woman,” or Led Zeppelin with their cover of “I Can’t Quit You Baby”, or Jeff Beck was citing Otis as one of his favorites. As a tribute to Otis, Stevie Ray Vaughan band named his band “Double Trouble” after Otis’s classic song of the same name.
Duke Ronnie Earl, Anson Funderburgh and Sean Costello are among a throng of contemporary blues guitarists today who continue to pay tribute to Otis. By the time Otis won his first Grammy in 1998 for his CD “Any Place I’m Going,” he was a certified Blues Hall of Famer, and both a deity and a legend.