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The Delta King's Blues

Music by: Damien Geter

Libretto by: Jarrod Lee

Duration: 45 mins - 60 mins

Commissioned by: IN Series upcoming November, 2025


Robert Johnson, the future Delta King of Blues, runs with embarrassment after a

failed attempt to impress Willie, Son and Virginia with his playing of a steel stringed guitar named Stella. Robert seeks God’s help but with no response to his desperate plea for revenge, the Devil suddenly appears and offers Robert guitar lessons. Robert is at a crossroad and is offered a choice to leave the Devil and be a mediocre guitarist or accept the offer for the cost of his soul. With a desire to be seen and remembered, Robert accepts the Devil’s guitar lessons and returns as the best player of the steel stringed guitar.


Characters are intended to be Black. Devil may be of any race.


Willie - Baritone

Son - Tenor

Robert Johnson - Tenor

The Devil - Bass

Virginia - Soprano

Stella - Guitar and woman identifying dancer


Chamber orchestra = 13 to 15 players, instrumentation TBD

Project Statement

The Delta King’s Blues plays on the traditional conflicts found in works like Faust, Little Mermaid, etc…  What would you give to have something you desire?  Would you make a deal with the Devil in order to experience that desire?  Robert Johnson, the Delta King of Blues, supposedly made a deal with the Devil.  His soul was given in exchange for the ability to play the guitar.  This is often referenced in different forms of media around the subject “crossroads.” My goal is to lean into the myth while showing something we all want… a better life.


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