The banjoist and singer for McKinney's Cotton Pickers in the ‘20s and ‘30s, Wilborn also recorded with Louis Armstrong. Wilborn began playing piano at age 12, but picked up the banjo shortly thereafter and made it his primary instrument. He worked with Cecil and Lloyd Scott in 1922, then joined drummer William McKinney's Synco Septet, which later became the Cotton Pickers. Wilborn recorded with Armstrong in 1928. McKinney's Cotton Pickers disbanded for a time in 1934, then reformed; Wilborn stayed until 1937, then fronted his own band until around 1950, when he quit playing music full-time. In 1971 alto saxophonist David Hutson built a new version of the Cotton Pickers around Wilborn, who was purportedly the last surviving member of the original group. From 1972 he sang and recorded with the New McKinney's Cotton Pickers; his singing ...
Read Full Biography