Profile:
Elizabeth Cotten (January 5, 1895 – June 29, 1987) was a self taught blues and folk musician, singer and songwriter from Carrboro, North Carolina. She developed her own style of playing left-handed by holding a normally tuned guitar upside down so she played the melodies with her thumb and the bass lines with her fingers. Her style of playing became known as "Cotten picking".

Cotten wrote most of her music in her early teens and earlier (she wrote Freight Train at age 11). After marrying at 15 and getting work as a maid she stopped playing music for 40 years. It wasn't until she was working as a maid for Charles Seeger, an avid music lover, that she relearned how to play the guitar.

In the 50s Mike Seeger began to record Cotten on reel to reel tape. In 1960 she began to play live for the first time, her first show was with Mike Seeger and she went on to perform with musicians such as Mississippi John Hurt, John Lee Hooker, and Muddy Waters. Because of the positive reaction Cotten began to write, record and tour with new material which she continued to do into her 80s. In 1984 she won the Grammy "Best Ethnic or Traditional Recording" for the album Elizabeth Cotten - Live!.

Elizabeth died when she was 92 in Syracuse, New York.
Variations:

Elizabeth Cotten Discography Tracks

Elizabeth Cotten - Jackie Washington album art Jackie Washington Spanish Flangdang and 1 more… Jackie Washington - Jackie Washington (Album) Vanguard US 1962 Sell This Version
P 7024, P-7024 Elizabeth Cotten - American Folk Songs album art Raun MacKinnon Freight Train Raun MacKinnon - American Folk Songs(LP, Album, Mono) Parkway, Parkway P 7024, P-7024 US 1963 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - I Don't Want To See You Again album art Peter & Gordon Freight Train Peter & Gordon - I Don't Want To See You Again (Album) Capitol Records US 1964 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Un Pugno Di ... West (Celebri Canzoni "Western") album art Peter Tevis Con Ennio Morricone E La Sua Orchestra* Freight Train (as Elisabeth Cotten) Peter Tevis Con Ennio Morricone E La Sua Orchestra* - Un Pugno Di ... West (Celebri Canzoni "Western") (Album) RCA Italiana Italy 1965 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Fate Is Only Once album art Harry Taussig Sugar Babe, Your Papa Cares For You (as Elizabeth Cotton) Harry Taussig - Fate Is Only Once (Album) Talisman Records (2) US 1965 Sell This Version
VRS 9189 Elizabeth Cotten - The Allen-Ward Trio album art The Allen-Ward Trio Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie The Allen-Ward Trio - The Allen-Ward Trio(LP, Album, Mono) Vanguard VRS 9189 US 1965 Sell This Version
VRS 9189 Elizabeth Cotten - The Allen-Ward Trio album art The Allen-Ward Trio Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie The Allen-Ward Trio - The Allen-Ward Trio(LP, Album, Mono, Promo) Vanguard VRS 9189 US 1965 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Riding In Folkland (America - Folk Songs - West - Ballads) album art Jack Elliot* & Derrol Adams* Freight Train (as E. Cotten) Jack Elliot* & Derrol Adams* - Riding In Folkland (America - Folk Songs - West - Ballads) (Album) Joker Hi-Fi Records, Joker (2) Italy 1966 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Vol. 2: Shake Sugaree album art Elizabeth Cotten Elizabeth Cotten - Vol. 2: Shake Sugaree (Album) Folkways Records USA & Canada 1967 Sell This Version
ERO 8021 Elizabeth Cotten - Alex Campbell & His Friends album art Alex Campbell (2) Freight Train (as Cotton) Alex Campbell (2) - Alex Campbell & His Friends(LP, Album, Mono) Saga Eros ERO 8021 UK 1967 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Everybody's Talkin' (Theme From Midnight Cowboy) album art Fred Neil I've Got A Secret (Didn't We Shake Sugaree) Fred Neil - Everybody's Talkin' (Theme From Midnight Cowboy) (Album) Capitol Records US 1969 Sell This Version
LUS 3004 Elizabeth Cotten - Country Cousins album art Dave Plane & Lisa Turner Freight Train (as Cotton) Dave Plane & Lisa Turner - Country Cousins(LP) Lucky Records (12) LUS 3004 UK 1970 Sell This Version
SPR 60, PR 60 Elizabeth Cotten - Jimmy Shand Jnr's "Scottish Party" album art Jimmy Shand Jnr. & His Band*, Anne Jamieson*, Brian Craigen, Jack Dougary Freight Train (as Cotton) Jimmy Shand Jnr. & His Band*, Anne Jamieson*, Brian Craigen, Jack Dougary - Jimmy Shand Jnr's "Scottish Party"(LP, Album) CBS, CBS SPR 60, PR 60 UK 1971 Sell This Version
GM 2018 Elizabeth Cotten - Memories Are Made Of This album art Jaap Zeeland Freight Train (as E. Cotton) Jaap Zeeland - Memories Are Made Of This(LP, Album) Gemini (4) GM 2018 UK 1972 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Aunt Molly's Murray Farm album art Stefan Grossman Delia (Delilah) (as Elizabeth Cotton) Stefan Grossman - Aunt Molly's Murray Farm (Album) Sonet UK & Ireland 1973 Sell This Version
AD 2001 Elizabeth Cotten - Country Dobro album art Charlie Cline (2) Freight Train Grass (as Cotton) Charlie Cline (2) - Country Dobro(LP, Album) Adelphi Records Inc. AD 2001 US 1974 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Ласточка Аула album art Зодиак Freight Train Зодиак - Ласточка Аула Мелодия USSR 1974 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - My Creole Belle album art Stefan Grossman Oh Babe, Ain't No Lie (as E. Cotten) Stefan Grossman - My Creole Belle (Album) Transatlantic Records France 1976 Sell This Version
755 Elizabeth Cotten - Norman Blake & Red Rector album art Norman Blake (2) And Red Rector Freight Train (as Eliz. Cotten) Norman Blake (2) And Red Rector - Norman Blake & Red Rector(LP, Album) County Records 755 US 1976 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Saturday Night At The Bull & Mouth album art Ewan MacColl & Peggy Seeger Freight Train Ewan MacColl & Peggy Seeger - Saturday Night At The Bull & Mouth (Album) Blackthorne Records UK 1977 Sell This Version
KM 136 Elizabeth Cotten - Bob Baxter's Guitar Workshop (Fingerpickin' Blues) album art Bob Baxter Freight Train and 1 more… Bob Baxter - Bob Baxter's Guitar Workshop (Fingerpickin' Blues)(LP, Album) Kicking Mule Records KM 136 US 1977 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Volume 3: When I'm Gone album art Elizabeth Cotten Gaslight Blues and 12 more… Elizabeth Cotten - Volume 3: When I'm Gone (Album) Folkways Records US 1979 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Guitare Américaine album art Roger Mason (3) / Steve Waring Carolina R + R Roger Mason (3) / Steve Waring - Guitare Américaine (Album) Le Chant Du Monde Spain 1972 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Slow & Easy album art Hans Theessink Shake Sugaree Hans Theessink - Slow & Easy Autogram Denmark 1978 Sell This Version
Elizabeth Cotten - Reckoning album art Grateful Dead* Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie Grateful Dead* - Reckoning (Album) Arista Germany 1981 Sell This Version