A shadowy figure, McMullen recorded for ARC in New York in January 1933, playing immaculate bottleneck blues guitar, whether behind his own vocals or with one or other of the Atlanta guitarists Curley Weaver and Buddy Moss. They also recorded as a trio, with Moss on harmonica. McMullen was listed only once in the 1932 Atlanta City Directory, and Moss maintained that he had returned to his home town of Macon, Georgia, after the session. The intensity of ‘De Kalb Chain Gang’ (‘They whipped me and they slashed me, forty-five all in my side’) suggests that it was autobiographical, and that he may have been on his way home following release from prison when he encountered the Atlanta musicians.
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