Happy Birthday Little Pink Anderson!

inArtist Storyon July 6, 2021

By Tim Duffy and Gabi Mendick

Little Pink Anderson grew up in South Carolina playing guitar and singing with his father Pinkney “Pink” Anderson, a much beloved but not widely known blues player. The elder Anderson died in 1974, unaware of how influential he had become — never knowing that Johnny Cash had cited him as an influence or that British art rocker Syd Barrett had come up with the name of his band — Pink Floyd — by coupling the first names of Pink Anderson and North Carolina bluesman Floyd Council.

Little Pink Anderson poses with a photo of himself and his father Pinkney “Pink” Anderson playing guitar together.

But these days, the affable Little Pink Anderson plays the blues and preserves his father’s legacy.

“I used to think that the guitar was just good to get a few extra dollars and a woman,” Little Pink says. “Daddy told me, ‘One day, you gonna pick up that guitar and you gonna take it serious. That guitar will feed you when nothing else will.’”

Watching Little Pink play will give you a master class in the blues techniques his father taught him — the Piedmont blues, old-school rural blues and others. And his powerful voice fills the room, whether he’s playing his own compositions or staples of his father’s repertoire, such as “St. James Infirmary” and “In the Jailhouse Now.”

“My father was a bigger influence on me than I realized for 40-something years,” Little Pink says.

When the children of musicians learn from their parents — whether proactively, subconsciously or stubbornly — they enable their musical traditions to live on. 

That is why partner artists like Little Pink are vital to Music Maker and our mission. Earlier this year, we were so happy when supporter John Bottino donated a rare Taylor guitar that we passed along to Little Pink. And just last month we helped Little Pink buy a new pair of specs. 

Helping musicians out with their needs, from instruments to glasses, is how we ensure that artists can continue playing and sharing their music. And Pink, who now lives in Sioux Falls, S.D., is spreading his music to every corner of the country. From South Carolina to South Dakota, Pink says, “I’d like to see America appreciate the blues because it is American music.”

Join us in wishing Little Pink Anderson a happy birthday and have a listen to his music and his take on the blues below!

Showing 3 comments
  • Ray Flynn

    Dear Mr. Anderson,
    Happy Birthday! And thank you for keeping The Blues, American music alive. Music can bring us together, heal our wounds, and our hearts, all while lifting our spirits and soothing our souls. Blues music has alway been a source of inspiration for me. It leaves me with hope. I hope you live a long happy life full of love and inspiration. Thank you! Many more songs and a lot more Birthdays!

    Ray Flynn
    Meriden, Ct

  • Mary Lasley

    Happy birthday, Mr. Anderson! Thank you for keeping the blues and your father’s legacy alive while bringing joy and understanding to those who hear you.

  • Gary Tomlin

    Happy Birthday Little Pink and wish you many more .

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