Memphis musician Sid Selvidge dies after a struggle with cancer



  • Sid

Sid Selvidge had a goal. He once told a reporter that he wanted to celebrate his centennial singing on the stage at the Levitt Shell. “I know it’s possible,” he said. Sadly, that’s one accomplishment Selvidge will never realize. The beloved regional artist, who had been battling cancer for some time, died early this (Thursday) morning.

Selvedge was a natural-born storyteller and effortless guitar picker with a gift for blending early African and Anglo folk traditions.

Born in Greenville, MS, Selvidge got his first taste of celebrity while he was still in high school, spinning Jazz, and Rock-and-Roll records for WDDT radio. He would later spin for KWHAM in West Memphis and eventually founded the internationally broadcast radio program, Beale Street Caravan.

Selvidge was both artist and academic. The Rhodes College graduate (then Southwestern at Memphis) spent time teaching anthropology at his alma mater. Erstwhile, as a musician he swapped guitar licks with Furry Lewis, played piano with Alex Chilton, and joined with Jim Dickinson, Jimmy Crosthwait, and Lee Baker to form Mudboy & the Neutrons.

Although he had many opportunities to enlarge his musical career, Selvidge decided to stay close to his roots, and make music his own way, in his own time.

Catch the Wind (feat. Amy Speace) (Studio Recording)

He is the father of Memphis musician Steve Selvidge.


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