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mojo / crossroads redux -- and Paganini

To: alt.lucky.w,alt.religion.orisha,alt.magick,alt.magick.tyagi,
From: (E. C. Ballard)
Subject: Re: mojo / crossroads redux -- and Paganini
Date: Mon, 09 Mar 1998 20:38:26 -0500

In article <6e1ls3$>, wrote:

> As for the myth about Robert Johnson's pact with the Devil, this is
> remarkably similar to a story circulated about an early 19th century
> composer and virtuoso violinist named Nicolo Paganini. His skills on
> violin so surpassed his contemporaries that it was rumored he sold his
> soul to the Devil for his skills.

The musician who gained musical prowess from either the christian devil or
some other spritual entity is a common motif in the folklore of the world.
It takes many forms, by no means all of them associated with the devil of
christian tradition. It may be found throughout Europe, the Americas - but
not merely from European sources, Africa, the Middle East, etc. 

Variations on the theme are also found in Asia. I think immediately of the
well known Japanese tale of the "Boy who drew cats". While actually listed
as a different motif in the Aarne Thompson Motif Index because it recounts
the story of a boy whose artwork creates or attracts a supernatural agency
rather than originates with one, they are faily close conceptually. They
both reflect on the supernatural or preternatural character of creativity.

Nsala Maleko,


Kutu kani kuditi, kalendi vioka ntuko.

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