Blue Coat Tom Nelson, named for the blue military jacket he always wore, hailed from Vicksburg, MS. He led a local string band there, which included guitarist T.C. Johnson. In 1928, "Blue Coat" traveled to Memphis to record at Okeh's field studio (just days after Lonnie Johnson had cut "Violin Blues" there). Nelson cut three songs during that first visit, including his signature "Blue Coat Blues." Nelson and Johnson later returned with a musician called Porkchop to record two more songs that were both religious parodies.

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