Sam Frazier Jr., Oral History

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Sam Frazier Jr., and Bob Friedman taken by Tom Spitzley, April 2019.jpg
Frazier 2 min.mp3
Sam Frazier Jr.pdf

Title

Sam Frazier Jr., Oral History

Description

Sam Frazier, Jr. (b. Aug 12, 1943) a Birmingham singer who sang the blues, RnB, gospel and country, whose career spans recording in NYC, Birmingham and Los Angeles, Sam came up in the Edgewater neighborhood of Birmingham, played a blues harp and guitar with Johnny Otis in L.A; also sang with the Golden Hummingbirds, a local gospel group, and sang and wrote country music, performing on the Country Boy Eddie early morning TV show on WBRC Channel 6 in Birmingham for some 14 years, the first African American on that show. He still performs with his band around Birmingham.

Creator

Sam Frazier Jr.
Bob Friedman

Publisher

Birmingham Black Radio Museum

Date

May 30, 2019

Contributor

Mark Usry
Emily Bibb

Format

PDF
JPG
MP3

Language

English

Interviewer

Bob Friedman

Interviewee

Sam Frazier Jr.

Transcription

Transcript from audio snippet:

Sam Frazier Jr.: You know, I had to get up every mornin' and go out there and milk that cow. He really picked that cotton and all that. He had all that stuff there. I had to bail hay. I went through the whole country life, I did it all.

Bob Friedman: But you also had your harmonica.

SFJ: Yeah, yeah. And my harmonica. I was playin' and...I had this school down there, the..twelfth grade. I graduated there at Linden Academy. And I graduated there in Linden, Alabama. I got to know all the people 'bout playin' the harmonica and all those little shows they had. The little talent shows. The guys in my class, we all formed a little band and we played all over town. A lot of the big bands heard about me and they wanted to talk to me. They lived in Thomasville, Alabama, on down around Demopolis and they all wanted me to come and I didn't have no money. I had no way to do nothin'.

BF: How? Who were some of the big bands you talkin' about?

SFJ: Oh they were little bands. I can't call his name now but, he was workin' at a cleaners there in Linden and he heard about me. Called me. Me and him had an interview and talked a little bit. And he invited me to some of the clubs that they were playin'. I don't know the name of the clubs.

BF: How did you get your first harmonica?

SFJ: Oh, 'bout from Sonny Boy Williamson. They was uh...that's some kind of story there. Uh, he was, you know, all those guys back then drink that White Lightning'. That liquor, you know? And he would come to our backyard parties and play the harm'. He didn't have nothin' but just the harmonica and a microphone and the old Sears/Roebuck amp. And he would blowin' through.

BF: Right

SFJ: And he'd come near me, nothin' but the harp and things and he'd be tappin' his foot on the cardboard floor we had there. And he'd be pumpin' out them blues on that harmonica. And then when he got through, you know, they was drinkin' and everything. He'd throw, you know, the harmonicas around and gave me one and he showed me a few things. Cause he saw I was interested. I was right up in his face, almost... lookin' at'em

Duration

Full Interview: 60 minutes
Audio Snippet: 2 minutes

Citation

Sam Frazier Jr. and Bob Friedman, “Sam Frazier Jr., Oral History,” The Birmingham Black Radio Museum, accessed October 19, 2020, http://thebbrm.org/item/533.

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