Alonzo Williams, Elester Anderson, George Higgs – photos by Peter B. Lowry

alonzo les george

Alonzo Williams/Elester Anderson/George Higgs– vo/gtr

Tarboro, NC – December 16, 1973

As a result of folks like us meeting Les-T a couple of years before this date through Danny McLean, Anderson began to practice his music and got his chops back again with our encouragement… and, surprisingly, that of his kids! I recorded him extensively in 1972; more sessions would follow until I stopped recording in ’79/’80. He even appeared at the legendary Chapel Hill concerts as a surprise (even to him!) “add on” performer after the intermission of the second night’s show!

Earlier that month I had taped him solo and also with his sons on bass guitar and drums – they had gotten him to play during a Thanksgiving gig with their R’n’B band. It’s probably what Blind Boy Fuller might have sounded like had he lived past 1941! It was rare for the younger generation to encourage playing the older styles of music, but his sons did just that.

A week later Danny and I went to his mobile home (caravan – UK) to meet he and his friends George Higgs and Alonzo Williams, who also both played guitars. A spontaneous session was taped then and these photos come from that gathering. Most of the singing and playing was by Les-T and George, but Alonzo also partook of both, often on second guitar.

Higgs and Anderson were recorded by me in the late 70s as a duo – gtr/gtr, or gtr/hca – as well as solo in sessions as yet unreleased. They had moved to a town called Speed in more northeastern North Carolina – in fact they were literal neighbors, living in houses right next to one another! Williams, on the other hand, I never saw or heard about after that afternoon at Les-T’s trailer in the trailer park in Tarboro that Sunday afternoon.

[NIKON F2]

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