Robert Nighthawk Photos

One of the most distinctive and influential bluesmen of all time, Robert Nighthawk’s style was characterized by a crying slide guitar style and deep, deliberate vocals. Though characterized as a Chicago bluesman, the town where he made all of his most famous recordings, Robert was a traveling man, and spent much time in the deep south, sometimes avoiding Chicago for years at a time. Robert recorded such classics as “Black Angel Blues”, “Anna Lee”, “Take It Easy Baby”, “Kansas City”, “Crying Won’t Help You”, “Friars Point”, and more for labels such as Aristocrat, Chess, United, States, and RCA Victor. He was a major influence on Muddy Waters, Elmore James, B.B. King, and particularly Earl Hooker. This photo page was inspired and approved by Robert Nighthawk’s daughter, Geni McCollum-Ward, who is currently collecting information regarding her father for a forthcoming book. If you can help, provide any information, photos, or memorabilia, please contact Geni at or (773) 994-4468. Please enjoy these classic photos of a true blues master.


Ernest Lane, Robert Nighthawk, Hazel McCollum (Robert’s Wife)
(Photo Courtesy of Geni McCollum-Ward)


Robert Nighthawk Business Card
(Courtesy Geni McCollum-Ward)



1940s Shot of Robert Nighthawk
(Photo Courtesy of Geni McCollum-Ward)


A frail Robert Nighthawk towards the end of his life in Powell, Mississippi – 1967
He is with longtime friends Houston Stackhouse & James “Peck” Curtis


Robert Nighthawk


A dapper Robert Nighthawk
Helena, Arkansas – 1942

Robert Nighthawk back when he was known as Robert Lee McCoy with his brother Percy on harmonica. 1930s.

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