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AfriGeneas States Research Forum

[AL] Willie King sings and lives the blues

"Raised by his grandparents after his mother and father separated, King made his first guitar out of hay-baling wire when he was 7 years old. He made his "professional debut," as he calls it, when he was 18 - at a house party hosted by a neighbor.

He lives in a weather-beaten trailer on a gravel road next door to the frame house shared by his older cousins, brothers Bill Frazier and Bill Berry Frazier. On Sundays, he plays at a juke joint just down the highway called Bettie's Place, which is owned and named after another cousin of his.

On a sweltering spring morning, King sits on the edge of a plywood stage in the woods behind his trailer. Shaded by a cooling canopy of oak trees, he has his red Fender Stratocaster guitar strapped around his shoulders."

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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