John Dee Holeman

Oral History Information

Interview Date
Birth Date
Deceased Date
Job Title
Musician, Guitarist

John Dee Holeman was an influential blues performer known as the last surviving original musician who popularized the Piedmont Blues style.  The finger-picking guitar style was also known as Southeastern Blues and refers to alternating thumb bass string rhythms with the syncopated melodic treble strings. Along with John Dee the style was developed by blues guitarists Bo Weavil Jackson, Peg Leg Howell and Blind Willie Walker.  John Dee was born in Hillsboro, North Carolina, where he taught himself the guitar and wrote such songs as "Country Girl"  and "Give Me Back My Wig (Baby Let Your Head Go Bald)". Many of his early recordings featured his Gibson guitar and in later years he played Martin guitars.  In fact, in 2012 he appeared in a CF Martin advertisement, which was featured in guitar and trade magazines for several months.