A fine rhythm guitarist, the delicately named Blythe Poteet was the cousin of Kirk McGee of the McGee Brothers, putting him in the family way in terms of picking talent. Certainly Poteet's guitar picking and strumming was pregnant with baby rhythm notes attempting to find their way to the back of the meeting hall or the hill on the other side of the picnic grounds. Such was the lot of an acoustic guitarist in an old-time group in the '20s, the era when Poteet stuck his nose into several different recording ensembles that were making country radio history. When he played with the Crook Brothers, a dance band whose dueling harmonica lineup was quite typical for Tennessee, there was no bass player and it was up to the guitarists to make sure the rhythm was felt as well as providing proper harmonic background for the fiddle tunes. The Crook Brothers were one of the first of the so-called hillbilly string bands to begin performing on the Grand Ole Opry, adding up to a good foot in the barn door for Poteet and a possible job over the years as the band persevered for several decades, continuing to hold forth on the Opry as various sidemen changed their mind about hanging about working with the Crook Brothers. Poteet was also an excellent player in the traditional fiddle and guitar duo relationship, and recorded in this capacity was the great old-time musician Fiddlin' Sid Harkreader, who was one of the first to document his repertoire in the new phonographic medium. When Harkreader's usual guitarist, Grady Moore, became confined to Nashville due to doctor's orders, Poteet was brought in as a replacement, taking part in the second of the only pair of recording sessions Harkreader was involved in. Poteet also recorded several singles for Gennett with Kirk McGee in 1928. The most popular of the bunch was the lively "Kicking Mule." He and the McGees played backup for Uncle Dave Macon in the early '30s, including further time on the Opry stage.
by Eugene Chadbourne