Adam Gussow

Adam Gussow

A celebrated harmonica teacher as well as player, New York native Adam Gussow has been “kicking and stomping” in Oxford, Mississippi for more than a decade now.  He is best known for his long partnership with guitarist/one-man-band Sterling “Mr. Satan” Magee, a Mississippi native with whom Gussow teamed up in 1986.  The unlikely pair worked the streets of Harlem for five years before renaming themselves “Satan and Adam,” releasing their W. C. Handy Award nominated debut CD, Harlem Blues, and becoming a national touring act, working the club and festival circuit throughout the 1990s.

In recent years, Gussow has reinvented himself as a harmonica-powered one-man band, releasing a pair of solo CDs, Kick and Stomp (2010) and Southbound (2011).  “Think James Cotton's warbling excitement and R.L. Burnside's grifter stomp, tied up with Lightnin' Hopkins' dustbowl charm,” wrote a reviewer for Living Blues, “and you've got the Adam Gussow sound.”

Gussow is known to blues harp students around the world thanks to his instructional website,, and the several hundred free tutorials he has posted on YouTube.  He is also the founder of Hill Country Harmonica, an annual teaching-intensive event that brings modern masters such as Billy Branch, Sugar Blue, and Jason Ricci together with several hundred students in the north Mississippi countryside.

An associate professor of English and Southern Studies at the University of Mississippi, Gussow is the author of three award-winning books on the blues:  Mister Satan’s Apprentice:  A Blues Memoir (1998), Seems Like Murder Here:  Southern Violence and the Blues Tradition (2002), and Journeyman’s Road:  Modern Blues Lives from Faulkner’s Mississippi to Post-9/11 New York (2007).  He is currently working on a book about the devil and the blues. 

"A veritable one-man Delta hammer....a schooled diatonic wizard" --Living Blues magazine


Satan and Adam

  • Harlem Blues (1991)
  • Mother Mojo (1993)
  • Living on the River (1996)
  • Word on the Street:  Harlem Recordings, 1989 (2008)

Adam Gussow

  • Kick and Stomp (2010)
  • Southbound (2011)
Adam Gussow PLAYS