Born September 2, 1911
Origin Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States
Died May 9, 1976 (aged 64)
Genres Piedmont blues
Instruments Guitar, mandolin, vocals
Floyd Council (September 2, 1911 – May 9, 1976) was an American blues guitarist, mandolin player, and singer. He became a well-known practitioner of the Piedmont blues, which was popular throughout the southeastern region of the United States in the 1930s.
Born in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, to Harrie and Lizzie Council, Floyd began his musical career on the streets of Chapel Hill in the 1920s, performing with two brothers, Leo and Thomas Strowd, as the Chapel Hillbillies. In the late 1920s and early 1930s he and Blind Boy Fuller busked in the Chapel Hill area. Council recorded twice for ARC at sessions with Fuller in the mid-1930s, all examples of the Piedmont style.
Council suffered a stroke in the late 1960s, which partially paralyzed his throat muscles and slowed his motor skills but did not significantly damage his cognitive abilities. Folklorist Peter B. Lowry attempted to record him one afternoon in 1970, but Council never regained his singing or playing abilities. Accounts say that he remained sharp in mind.
Council died in 1976 of a heart attack, after moving to Sanford, North Carolina. He was buried at White Oak AME Zion Cemetery in Sanford.
1 The Floyd in Pink Floyd
The Floyd in Pink Floyd
Syd Barrett, of English psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd, came up with the band's name by juxtaposing the first names of Council and South Carolina bluesman Pink Anderson. He noticed the names in the liner notes of a 1962 Blind Boy Fuller LP (Philips BBL-7512). The text, written by Paul Oliver, read, "Curley Weaver and Fred McMullen, (...) Pink Anderson or Floyd Council—these were a few amongst the many blues singers that were to be heard in the rolling hills of the Piedmont, or meandering with the streams through the wooded valleys."
No records are available which exclusively feature Council's work. The CD Carolina Blues features six songs he recorded: "I'm Grievin' and I'm Worryin'", "I Don't Want No Hungry Woman", "Lookin' for My Baby", "Poor and Ain't Got a Dime", "Runaway Man Blues" and "Working Man Blues".
According to a 1969 interview, Council stated he had recorded 27 songs over his career, seven of them backing Blind Boy Fuller. Fuller's Complete Recorded Works contain many songs in which Council played guitar.