Special Collections at the Wilson Music Library: Peter Redvers Lee Collection

An overview of the special collections available for students, faculty, and researchers held by the Anne Potter Wilson Music Library.

About the Peter Redvers Lee Collection:

Peter Redvers Lee was born July 2, 1960, in Estcourt, South Africa. After graduating in 1985 from the University of South Africa, he attended the University of Mississippi to obtain his M.A. in Journalism. His studies at Mississippi led him to become the editor of Living Blues, a post he held from 1987 until 1991.  As part of his editorial responsibilities, he interviewed blues musicians in the South for special features in the magazine and captured those interviews on cassette tapes. The Redvers Lee collection contains many of these interviews (conducted by Peter Redvers Lee and others), as well as interviews conducted for a then-planned book on Sonny Boy Williamson (d.1965). The collections also includes transcripts of these interviews and copies of documents and press related to Sonny Boy Williamson and other blues artists.

Overview of the Collection:

Size and Scope of the Collection:
  • 60 recordings of interviews (mostly on cassette tape) with corresponding transcripts. 
  • Redvers-Lee also donated published materials, including 202 blues CDs, 446 blues LPs, 129 books, and 146 magazines. These materials have been incorporated into the Wilson Music Library's normal circulating collections.
Collection Strengths:
  • Unique and rare interviews with blues musicians, including Robert Johnson, Robert Lockwood, Jr., Gatemouth Moore, Tabby Thomas, Pinetop Perkins, and Booba Barnes.
  • These interviews are rich primary sources in which musicians recount their lived experiences.
Accessing the Collection:
  • Digital copies of the Redvers-Lee interviews can be accessed in the Wilson Music Library. Please send inquiries regarding access to the Director of the Wilson Music Library.
  • Circulating materials can be located in the library catalog by using the search phrase "from the peter redvers-lee collection."