Scott Dunbar

Genres: Blues
Decades Active: 2000s

Biography

1904, Deer Park Plantation, Mississippi, USA, d. 4 September 1994, Centreville, Mississippi, USA. Dunbar taught himself guitar as a child, and despite some involvement with a local string band, his music was idiosyncratic and unpredictable, combining seemingly spontaneous guitar playing with a singing style that veers abruptly between normal and falsetto registers; the total performance often seems almost a free-form exploration of the song. Dunbar never travelled more than 100 miles from his rural home, and was further isolated by his illiteracy, which meant that his lyrics were memorized, and often startlingly fragmented. He seldom - and by the 60s, never - played for black audiences, owing to his wife’s fear of possible violence. He combined work as a fisherman and guide with playing for tourists, and his repertoire reflected this, with popular tunes substantially outnumbering blues.

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