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The Traditional Delta and Country Blues

Charley Lincoln

Charley Lincoln (aka Laughing Charley), born Charlie Hicks, Jr., March 11, 1900 in Lithonia, GA, d. September 28, 1963 in Cairo, GA, early country blues musician. He often recorded with his brother Robert Hicks, who was billed as Barbecue Bob. Hicks was born in Lithonia, Georgia. In his teens he was taught to play the guitar by Savannah Weaver, the mother of Curley Weaver, and performed in the Lithonia area until 1920. He moved to Atlanta, Georgia, and worked outside the field of music, occasionally performing with his brother. He recorded with his brother for Columbia Records from 1927 to 1930. An example is the duet "It Won't Be Long Now", with crosstalk, which the brothers recorded in Atlanta on November 5, 1927. After Robert's early death in 1931, Lincoln continued to perform into the 1950s. From 1955 to 1963 he was imprisoned for murder in Cairo, Georgia, where he became a prisoner trustee. He died there of a cerebral hemorrhage on September 28, 1963.


by Ron Wynn
Aliases and psudeoynms aside, Charlie Hicks AKA Charley or Charlie Lincoln was an above-average country blues vocalist. He teamed often with either his brother Robert Hicks AKA Barbecue Bob or with Peg-Leg Howell. His guitar voicings and style were influenced by Curley Weaver, but Hicks was a colorful singer and flashy player. Weaver's mother Savannah taught Lincoln the guitar as a teenager. Lincoln recorded with his brother for Columbia from 1927-1930; he continued playing with him into the '50s, though his performance and playing schedule was highly irregular. A murder conviction ended his career in 1955; he was in prison until his death in 1963.