Blues music is heralded as an American invention and while men like Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters were fathers of the genre, blues wasn't solely the purview of U.S.-born musicians. Contemporary British musicians like Eric Clapton and John Mayall, influenced by blues masters, took the traditional lexicon and added their own sounds, becoming influential themselves for musicians like L.A.-based guitarist Joe Bonamassa.
Not yet 40 years old, Bonamassa has an astounding 16 albums under his belt, citing a fondness for an "English interpretation" of blues. But American bluesmen informed Bonamassa's early style as well: At the age of 12, he opened for B.B. King, coming full circle when he opened for King's 80th birthday tour a few years ago. Bonamassa is becoming an icon in his own right, captivating audiences with his original blues-rock and incredible guitar-slaying abilities.