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Pink Anderson

Born Pinkney Anderson, February 12, 1900, Laurens, South Carolina, the American finger-pickin’ guitarist and singer first took to the road (quite literally) when he started buck dancing and busking as a teenager; he was self-taught from 10 years of age. When he hooked up with Dr. W.R. Kerr’s Indian Remedy Company in 1914, he’d be entertaining crowds, while his accomplice would be mixing up the medicine, by way of “calling”; the Dr. would disappear from the scene just after the Second World War. Musically, ANDERSON went on the road with blind country-blues veteran Simmie Dooley (b. 1881), a partnership that would produced two platters (`Papa’s ‘Bout To Get Mad’ and `Every Day In The Week Blues’) for Columbia Records in 1928.
It would be over two decades before Pink (now with Gibson J-50 guitar and harmonica) returned to a studio; this time around he’d share time with fellow Laurens bluesman, the blind REV. GARY DAVIS. These 1950 recordings were dusted down and released by Riverside Records as AMERICAN STREET SONGS (1956) {*6}. The early 60s saw delivery of four further albums, CAROLINA BLUES MAN: VOLUME 1 (1961) {*6} and CAROLINA MEDICINE SHOW HOKUM & BLUES (1962) {*6} – with “Baby Tate” – to VOL.2: MEDICINE SHOW MAN (1962) {*6} and THE BLUES OF PINK ANDERSON: BALLAD & FOLKSINGER VOL.3 (1963) {*6}; for folklorists everywhere check out the movie, The Bluesman – if one can find it!
One’s sure everyone would’ve forgotten his contribution to the blues (and a little to folk), had it not been for a certain PINK FLOYD, who married his forename to that of another bluesman, Floyd Council. A subsequent stroke curtailed any thoughts of a comeback; even folklorist Peter B Lowry was perturbed when ANDERSON declined to sign to his Trix imprint in 1970. ROY BOOK BINDER did manage however, to take him on a “student” tour. Sadly, Pinkney died of a heart attack on October 12, 1974.
© MC Strong 2010/GFD // rev-up MCS Aug2015

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