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DOWN BUT NOT OUT

Blues artist Charlie Musselwhite is recovering in a Mexican hospital from injuries suffered two weeks ago when a tractor trailer broadsided his car.

"Ain't no broken bones going to keep me down," Musselwhite told the Clarksdale Press Register newspaper by phone Monday.

The Grammy nominee and six-time W.C. Handy Award winner for his harmonica mastery suffered broken ribs and a bruised kidney and spleen. Musselwhite said doctors told him there was some internal bleeding.

"The people here at the hospital said I came as close to death as you can get," he said. "I've had broken bones before and been in wrecks, but I've never felt anything like this pain."

Musselwhite said he was driving the car when the truck slammed into his vehicle's side. His wife, Henrietta, who was in the passenger seat, was not seriously hurt.

Musselwhite said personnel at the Cancun hospital have been wonderful.

"My Spanish has improved, too," he said.

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