“Blind Tom,” born a slave, at the age of 10 became the highest paid pianist of the 19th century

“Blind Tom” was a musical prodigy who was born in slavery in 1850, in the state of Georgia. He was a contemporary virtuoso of Liszt and Rubinstein, but one who seemed unaware of his skin color, his fame, or his success. Blind Tom was aware only of the sounds and music around him. He left a few compositions behind, but the man behind the virtuoso persona, Thomas Wiggins, is a puzzling character of the 19th century who left nothing to the world, not a word, not a note, only the memories of other people. Very little is known about this genius who performed in the White House in front of President James Buchanan.

Source: “Blind Tom,” born a slave, at the age of 10 became the highest paid pianist of the 19th century

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