Born Armenter Chatmon on a plantation outside of Bolton, Mississippi, in 1893. His mother played the guitar, and his father, who had learned to fiddle from a planter during slavery, were his earliest teachers and influences. The whole Chatmon family was musical and Bo, with his brothers Lonnie and Sam, started a string band that became famous as the 'Mississippi Sheiks'. They were one of the best selling 'Race recording acts' of the Depression years and the brothers were usually joined by Walter Vinson, all of whom played several instruments. As a solo artist Bo Carter also enjoyed considerable recording success, often using risqué and ribald lyrics and metaphors in his songs, overlaid with hokum influences. Because of his style he was sometimes overlooked by 'blues researchers' who did not regard his music as "serious". Nevertheless he recorded a range of more serious blues numbers, particularly later in his career, and he was the first to record the standard 'Corrine Corrina' in 1928. Shortly after this however Bo Carter went blind and from the mid 1930's he settled into a life as a street singer in Memphis. He died in Memphis in 1964 aged 71.

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