Some of my best-loved old blues guitar men are for the most part unsung musicians who had their origins in Carolina – Floyd Council, Pink Anderson ( Pink Floyd borrowed their names for their rock group in the 1960s ) and Scrapper Blackwell.
Floyd Council didn’t record a lot as a performer in his own right, but sometimes played in studio recording sessions backing well known blues players such as Blind Boy Fuller, another South Carolina celebrity . Pink Anderson performed ragtime guitar and played in traveling shows selling medicines.
Scrapper Blackwell was an highly wide-ranging guitar player who penned many unforgettable songs, such as Blues Before Sunrise and Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out.
Floyd Council (Born September 2, 1911 and died May 9th , 1976) was a well-known entertainer of Piedmont ragtime blues sound, which was well liked all through the south eastern region of America during the nineteen thirties . He started his career in the 1920s, playing with two brothers, Leo and Thomas Strowd and they called themselves “The Chapel Hillbillies”. He likewise performed on some sessions with Blind Fuller in the 30s . His muscles were partially paralyzed after suffering a stroke in the nineteen sixties, but it seemed that his mind was still sharp. Nevertheless , he was never able to recover his playing ability. Floyd died in 1976 , the result of a heart attack, just after going to reside in Sanford, NC.
Pink was born in Greenville SC. Having trained himself in numerous instruments, he started to playfor Dr. Frank Kerr, who ran a business known as the Indian Remedy Company in nineteen fourteen to sing for the public while the doctor peddled his special ‘ elixir ‘.
In the town of Spartanburg, Anderson met Simeon “Blind Simmie” Dooley in 1916, who taught him how to play blues guitar – Pink previously had some experience of performing in string bands. When he wasn’t traveling in Dr Kerr’s medicine show , Dooley and Pink would play at small parties . Problems with his heart eventually forced Anderson to retire from the road in nineteen fifty seven . He suffered a stroke in nineteen fifty four, which forced him to well-nigh stop playing guitar, and he never again played with his old genius. He passed on October nineteen seventy four, after a heart attack at the age of 74. He’s interred in Spartanburg.
Born in Syracuse, Carolina, Scrapper Blackwell was one of sixteen children. Half Cherokee Indian, he was raised up and lived most of his time in Indianapolis. He was given the familiar name , “Scrapper”, by his grandma , because of his difficult nature. His father could play the violin, but Scrapper taught himself how to play the guitar. Even when he was a teenager , Scrapper worked as a part-time musician, roving up as far as as Chicago. He was a difficult man, generally keeping to himself and difficult to relate to. Nonetheless, Blackwell started a duo with pianist Leroy Carr, whom he was introduced to in Indiana in the nineteen twenties, which was a lucrative working relationship. Scrapper also made records of his own, like “Kokomo Blues” which became “Old Kokomo Blues” (Kokomo Arnold) before it metamorphosed again into “Sweet Home Chicago” by Robert Johnson.
Blackwell and Carr traveled extensively throughout the mid-west states and in the South from 1928 to 1935 – they were amongst the first celebrities of the blues scene, cutting over 100 tracks. After Leroy passed away, Blackwell started to perform again in the late 1950s and was recorded again in June 1958 by Colin C. Pomroy. He was going to restart his blues career when he was shot and killed during a robbery in an Indianapolis alley. He was fifty nine years old .
Jim Bruce is a working blues man making a living playing blues guitar. His acoustic lessons are fast becoming the standard to reach for students wanting to lean how to play blues.