FRANK STOKES. 1888 - 1955.
FURRY LEWIS. 1893 - 1981.


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Frank Stokes is born in Whitehaven, near Memphis, on 1st January 1888.

Furry Lewis is born in Greenwood, Mississippi, on 6th March 1893.

In 1916 Furry loses a leg while hitching a ride on a freight train.

By 1925 Frank is playing regularly out doors in Memphis with fellow guitarist Dan Sane, violinist Will Batts and singer-guitarist Jack Kelly. Furry is also playing in Memphis with characters such as Jim Jackson and Gus Cannon.

In 1927 Frank makes his first recordings with Sane, the duo call themselves the Beale Street Sheiks, in 1929 Frank makes his last recordings.

Furry also enters the recording studio for the first time, for the Vocation record label in Chicago, along with guitarist Landers Walters and mandolin player Charles Johnson.

Lewis - Stokes.

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Both Frank and Furry disappear from public sight until 1952 when Frank Stokes turns to religion, three years later Frank dies after suffering a stroke on 15th September 1955.

Between 1956 and 1959, Will Batts, Jack Kelly and Dan Sane who accompanied Frank are also to pass away.

Having been rediscovered by Sam Charters in 1959, Furry has his first album released "Furry Lewis". In 1963 he appears at folk festivals with fellow veterans of the 1920's and 30's Memphis scene, Gus Cannon and Willie Borum.

Then in 1968 Furry begins a period of recording which takes 18 months and produces six albums.
The Alabama State Troupers, a trio featuring Furry release the live album "Road Show" in 1972.
In 1975 Furry appears alongside Burt Reynolds in the film W.W and the Dixie Dance Kings.
Joni Mitchell writes and records the song 'Furry Sings the Blues' in 1976 after having met the bluesman.

Furry dies in Memphis on 14th September 1981.


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