Houston blues player Little Joe Washington performed for more than 40 years, but his musical recordings were limited to a few hard-to-find albums. He moved quietly and frequently, as much a ghost as a legend. Washington - whose personal blues included a 10-year period he barely remembers, addictions and periods of homelessness - died after an extended illness Wednesday, said Jomonica Phoenix, his friend and caretaker. He was 75.
Washington's skeletal frame and world weary visage gave the impression that he was fading long before he did. He repeatedly found his way to local hospitals in his last years, but he'd rally and continue performing until the end.