Curley Weaver, who was known for much of his life as "the Georgia Guitar Wizard," is only just beginning to be appreciated as one of the best players ever to pick up a six-string instrument. Although he recorded a fair number of sides on his own during the 1920s and '30s, Weaver was most commonly heard in performances and recordings in association with his better-known colleagues Blind Willie McTell (with whom he worked from the 1930s until the early '50s), Barbecue Bob, and Buddy Moss. Weaver was born in Newton County, GA, in Covington, and was raised on a cotton farm. His mother, Savanah Shepard, encouraged him to sing from a very early age and also taught him to play the guitar, beginning when he was ten-years-old. Savanah Shepard was a renowned guitarist in her own right around Newton County, and also taught guitar legends Barbecue Bob and his brother, Charlie Lincoln, to play the instrument when they were children. Her musical interests lay in gospel but, as in the case of Hicks and Lincoln, her son gravitated in the opposite direction, toward the blues. Curley Weaver learned to play slide guitar from two legendary (and, alas, never recorded) local bluesmen, Nehemiah Smith and Blind Buddy Keith. He showed extraordinary aptitude and, at age 19, teamed up with harmonica player Eddie Mapp, and moved to Atlanta. There he hooked up with Barbecue Bob and Charlie Lincoln, who quickly showed their younger friend the ins-and-outs of life, busking on Decatur Street, the heart of Atlanta's black entertainment district, with its bars, restaurants, clubs, and theaters.