A key figure on the Memphis jug band circuit of the 1920s, singer and harpist Noah Lewis
was born on September 3 of either 1890 or 1895 (depending on sources) in Henning, Tennessee. Upon relocating to Memphis, he teamed with Gus Cannon
, becoming an essential component of Cannon's Jug Stompers
; the group made their debut recordings for the Paramount label in 1927, with several more sessions to follow prior to their final date in late 1930. On a series of sides cut in the first week of October 1929, Lewis
made his debut as a name artist, cutting three blistering harmonica solos as well as "Going to Germany," which spotlighted his plaintive vocal style. Later recording with Yank Rachell
and John Estes
, as the Depression wore on Lewis
slipped into obscurity, living a life of extreme poverty; his death on February 7, 1961 was a result of gangrene brought on by frostbite.