Gus Cannon was a fascinating character and musician. Born in 1885 in Red Banks, Mississippi, he was a self taught musician who was proficient on banjo, guitar, fiddle, piano, jug and kazoo! In fact he often played the banjo and the jug at the same. His first instruments were home made and it is likely that he picked up the the rudiments of his musical skills from older musicians who lived locally. By the time he was a teenager he had moved to Memphis and had linked up with songster Jim Jackson and Robert Wilkins, both of whom were also from Mississippi. All three worked the medicine show circuit and Cannon gradually developed a style which was a mix of minstrel, folk and early blues. It was about this time that Cannon met up with harmonica player Noah Lewis and they formed a partnership which a few years later became the basis of a band formed by Cannon, the 'Jug Stompers'.

The band was active for something like 20 years and during the period they recorded for Victor and Paramount, including Cannon's 'signature' tune "Walk Right In". On occasions the line up of the band would include artists such as Blind Blake, Yank Rachell and Sleepy John Estes. Cannon also continued to gig solo at parties, juke joints and clubs in the Memphis area, and he occasionally made solo recording using the pseudonym Banjo Joe. In the late 1950's and 1960's he enjoyed more success during the folk boom of that era, recording again for the Folkways label. His health deteriorated during the 1970's and he became confined to a wheelchair, passing away in 1979 in Memphis, aged 94.