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Author Topic: Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik  (Read 594 times)

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Offline Johnm

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Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik
« on: June 07, 2016, 10:06:47 AM »
Hi all,
I received an email this morning from Mary T. Asfaw Matthews, a relative of Philip McCutcheon, the Cedar Creek Sheik, through her husband's family, and she sent me the following excerpt of an article she wrote about his family history, kindly granting permission to share the information.  Here is what she sent me:

"The black McCutchens have been living in Suttons since 1875-1880 and can trace their family history in Williamsburg County back to the late 1700s. They were originally from the Rice Coast of Africa, and were bought or inherited, as slaves, by George McCutchen Sr of Kingstree and the area known later as Indian, SC. By 1880, most of the white McCutchens had moved to other areas like Lake and Bishopville, but the black Gullah descendents of Nathan and Sarah "Sallie" McCutchen settled in the farming community of Suttons, SC. One of their daughters, Elizabeth "Lizzie" McCutchen (1880), had two children - Philip (1910) (named after his Uncle Philip McCutchen) and Willie. She was not married, and her son Philip may have been mulatto with a white father. This was not uncommon. Her oldest sister, Mary Jane "Jensy" McCutchen also had an illegitimate half-white son named Matthew (born 1886). Matthew was shown living with his mother and step-father, Berry Singleton in Suttons in 1900. Matthew would have been first cousins with Philip. Matthew later changed his name to Mr. Robert "Pap" Matthews, and he was a very well known and well loved figure in Suttons. This was my husband's grandfather. I am still interviewing family and elders to learn more about Philip McCutchen (who died in Andrews/Sutton/Trio area around 1967) and his mother Lizzie."

All best,
Johnm

Offline Lignite

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Re: Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2016, 04:13:04 PM »
That's great John. This adds much to blues research and is very important. Thanks for sharing.  I know that he recorded in Charlotte. So he was he from South Carolina? Suttons, SC is a very rural area just north of Charleston and fairly close to the coast. It probably was a farming area but also privy to some very different influences than the Piedmont or mountainous area. Did he spend his whole life there or did he move to a more populous area like Columbia or Greenvile SC or Charlotte, NC while he was a professional musician?
« Last Edit: June 07, 2016, 04:35:05 PM by Lignite »

Offline Johnm

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Re: Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2016, 04:54:25 PM »
Hi Lightnin',
Mrs. Matthews has kindly sent me some additional information which I will post later this evening, as I'm currently having to go take care of goats and water the garden.  I agree with, you, it's great, and some of her information that I'll post later gets into the rotating cast of characters who the Sheik sang about in several of his songs.  It's really interesting news, and thanks to Mrs. Matthews for reaching out with it.  I'll just say for now that he was from South Carolina, from Suttons.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2016, 03:10:15 AM »
Wonderful information. Looking forward to the next instalment!


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Offline Lastfirstface

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Re: Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2016, 06:00:21 AM »
Very interesting. Not a lot of info out there about the Cedar Creek Sheik.

Edit: Just rereading this older thread and it seems jdcrutch's speculation was in the right direction:

http://weeniecampbell.com/yabbse/index.php?topic=5514.15
« Last Edit: June 08, 2016, 06:20:01 AM by Lastfirstface »

Offline oddenda

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Re: Philip McCutcheon--The Cedar Creek Sheik
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2016, 10:46:10 PM »
I always thought that Victor would not "mix" their race series with White folks. I hope that a photo or two will come of all this! Congrats, mate.

pbl

 


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