Photos, Prints, Drawings Harold Carpenter on guitar and Frazier Gills on fiddle

Format Photos, Prints, Drawings
Contributors Carpenter, Harold
Eiler, Lyntha Scott
Gills, Frazier
Dates 1995
Location Coal City
Raleigh County
West Virginia
Language English
Subjects Community Events
Community Memorabilia Displays
Frazier Gills' Barbershop
Letterbrook Number 3
Music Making
Harold Carpenter on guitar and Frazier Gills on fiddle
Contributor Names
Carpenter, Harold (Depicted)
Gills, Frazier (Depicted)
Eiler, Lyntha Scott (Photographer)
Created / Published
October 30, 1995
Subject Headings
-  Recreation
-  Community events
-  Music-making
-  Fall
-  October
-  Frazier Gills' Barbershop
-  Community memorabilia displays
-  Letterbrook Number 3
-  Ethnography
-  Photographs
-  West Virginia -- Raleigh County -- Coal City
-  Event: Tuesday night jam session at Frazier Gills' Barbershop.
-  Throughout southern West Virginia one can find regular jam sessions, which occur in public spaces like the Sophia Fire Hall, the Coal City Barber Shop, and the Beckley Flea Market, as well as in private buildings sometime built for that purpose, and elsewhere as well. As one musician put it, "We've played on the riverbanks, we've played on the mountaintops." Musicians playing a variety of instruments assemble regularly to perform an eclectic repertoire, including as one musician said, "traditional country, bluegrass, rock'n'roll, and gospel." Frazer Gills, a celebrated fiddler in the coal fields, cuts hair in the barbershop he built beside his home in Coal City. On Tuesdays he swaps haircuts with Thurmond Walker, a barber in Beckley, who is also a fiddler. Each Tuesday night area musicians congregate at Frazier Gills' for barber shop jam sessions. This session took place in the narrow cinderblock barbershop that Frazier Gills built next to his home in Coal City. Lined with benches beneath walls spangled with decades of historical memorabilia, the shop's focal point is a single barber chair on a dais opposite the entrance. The panoramic photo of miners at the entrance to Letterbrook Number 3 was taken in 1951. The mine shut down in 1955.
35 mm Color Slide
Call Number
AFC 1999/008: CRF-LE-C060-14
Source Collection
Coal River Folklife Collection (AFC 1999/008)
American Folklife Center
Digital Id

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