Frank Poindexter is a natural choice for the Wednesday afternoon “instrumental when we have ’em” Track slot, not only is he a master of dobro but his back story is quite simple one of those that is unlikely to ever happen again. The youngest son of a tobacco sharecropping family of fifteen, Frank learned to play the Dobro by the time he was ten years old, converting a cheap 6-string guitar into a make-shift Dobro using a bucket lid over the sound hole to resemble one that Uncle Josh Graves played. By 15, he got his first real Dobro and joined the Carolina Rangers band playing on WLOE Radio out of Eden, North Carolina.
Tony Rice was Frank’s nephew, and they played together with Bobby Atkins as Atkins, Poindexter & Rice. That band broke up, as bands do, but Frank continued to play on and off with Tony and his brothers. Today’s tune comes from the new album ‘It’s the Music‘ (Mountain Fever Records) which has the last studio performance by all four Rice brothers. As Frank Poindexter tells it: “We lost both Larry and Tony in 2006 and 2020. It was pure love being together during the four days of recording. It was like a family reunion with my sister, mother, and the Rice brothers, and Louise, who most refer to her as Aunt Lou, joining us during the studio sessions. Tony even remarked that it was doubtful that he, Larry, Ronnie, and Wyatt would have been there if it had not been for mom. We all enjoyed some good meals at a little country restaurant not far from the studio in Cana, VA. Ronnie took a ton of pictures that captured the bright moments.”
This is great. Those with a very long memory may recall that Frank, and various other Poindexters, were featured on Dickey Betts’ 1974 Highway Call album. Larry Rice was part of the Highway Call touring band. I think Dickey Betts was related to the Poindexters in some way, another example of how small the world can be.