Muddy Waters, Big Joe Williams, wrote Baby please don't go, Bind Melon Chitlern, Howling Wolf. Too many more to list.<br />
AND OF COURSE, tHE MAN - ROBERT jOHNSON, HIMSELF.
Tom Waits qualifies as blues? I reeally like swordfishtrombones and rain dogs. Z.Z.Top, B.B.King, Hammie Nixon, Sleepy John Estes. I really can't take blues played after '84 seriously, it all seems like unintentional satire.
Sure... I guess that, being from NOLA, even if he intentionally avoided twelve-bar and pentatonics, he would still be blues. Add to that his massive catalog of sad sad sad songs, he totally is, regardless of the strange instrument choices.
The best blues band I EVER heard....standing ovation...pure s*e*x guitar....was Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters. He was so good he made the James Montgomery band look sick.