As the trailer details, Johnson was a little-known musician and juke joint performer in Mississippi during the early 1930s, before mysteriously disappearing for a year and a half and returning with a profound set of guitar-picking skills. (“He’s doing things with the guitar that even his mentors can’t do.”) Legend has it that Johnson became a virtuoso through sinister means: as the myth goes, he set his guitar down in the middle of a crossroads one night and called upon the Devil, striking a deal that he could become a guitar master in exchange for his soul.
Johnson’s sudden talents – and his early, enigmatic death at age 27 – have allowed the Devil myth to persevere to this day, earning a permanent spot in the musician’s biography. But ReMastered seeks to go beyond the myth itself and explore Johnson’s influence in the history of music, including how his troubled backstory found echoes in later icons of the blues, jazz and rock & roll.
ReMastered: Devil at the Crossroads premieres on Netflix on April 26th.