From around '69 to '71 the music industry was hyping something called "swamp rock": Creedence, Ronnie Hawkins, Tony Joe White, Dr. John, Joe South, and others were thrown into this marketing category. Even the Ventures, ever the bandwagon jumpers cut a "swamp rock" album. This was Tony Joe's foot in the door, although it was his songwriting (having tunes cut by Elvis, Tina Turner, Brook Benton, etc.) that paid the bills.
Tony Joe White was born in Oak Grove, Louisiana, in 1943, way back in bayou country, his accent is as thick as motor oil, he was the oldest of seven children. Influenced by Lightnin' Hopkins he began leading bands as a teenager, spending seven years on the chitlin' circuit before getting signed to a recording and publishing contract by Monument. I don't think any of these early bands-- Tony Joe & the Mojos, Tony's Twilights, etc. recorded, but I could be wrong.
I remember reading a quote from Kim Fowley about the greatest things he ever saw in his life, one was Tony Joe White backed by Booker T. & the M.G.'s, "He was Elvis that night" recalled the most quotable man in rock'n'roll history. I wish I had a tape of that, anyone know if it was ever released? He wasn't Elvis the night I saw him, he was the white Jimmy Reed. Even more so than J.J. Cale, who does a pretty good white Jimmy Reed himself. He's still at it, for a couple of grand he'll show up at your bar, with a guitar, harmonica and drummer, and rock for an hour or so. Here's a few more of my favorites-- Did Somebody Make A Fool Out Of You,