Despite the freedom gained in the American Civil War, most African-Americans had seen little change in their living conditions by the beginning of the 20th Century. Ironically, it would take another conflict to change the outlook. The First World War created jobs for unskilled workers in the North and many took the opportunity to escape the cloying restrictions of the South. The unsophisticated sounds of the country were no longer relevant to their lifestyles and the music changed accordingly. Without the blues there would have been no rock 'n' roll, and this generous 50 track compilation is nothing less than the roots of that revolution.