Otis Rush was born near Philadelphia and learned his instrument from listening to blues on the radio.
Whilst visiting his sister in Chicago, he was taken to see a performance by Muddy Waters and decided that he wanted a career as a musician. Purchasing a guitar he practised whenever possible.
One night the guitarist at a local club failed to turn up and Otis was offered $5 to take his place, which led to him gaining a residency.
In 1956 he was signed to the newly formed Cobra Records where the label’s first release was his version of the Willie Dixon song I Can’t Quit You Baby which became a national R&B hit.
When Cobra collapsed in 1959, he signed to Chess where only eight of his tracks were released, the best-remembered being So Many Roads, So Many Trains (1960).
His 50-year career contained a number of memorable recordings, none surpassing the tortuous sounds coaxed from Eli Toscano’s back room studio, with Willie Dixon‘s writing, arranging and production.
Ain’t Enough Comin’ In (1994) was a stunning surprise and Rush delivered some of the best singing of his career.