Washington, D.C., Washington, D.C., USA

THE SHACKBREAKERS play rollicking, heartfelt, acoustic/country blues. Rick Franklin (guitar/vocal), Eleanor Ellis (guitar, vocal, washboard, Phil Wiggins (harmonica/vocal), Thomas Cox (acoustic and electric bass) have known each other and played together for 20 years.


Blending blues and country, the Shackbreakers bring an undeniable edge to their music with finger lickin' treatments of tunes by the likes of Memphis Minnie, Furry Lewis, Hank Williams, Charley Patton, Lonnie Johnson and more. Eleanor Ellis combines the rich musical heritage of her native Louisiana with a powerful attraction to the music of the old country blues masters. Rick Franklin’s influences include ragtime, country string bands, traveling medicine shows, and popular song of the early 20th century. Phil Wiggins' harmonica sound developed from listening to piano and horn players, as well as the music of Sonny Terry, Sonny Boy Williamson, Little Walter, Big Walter Horton and Junior Wells. Phil also apprenticed with Mother Scott (a contemporary of Bessie Smith). Besides being a renowned harmonica player, Wiggins is also a gifted songwriter and singer. Thomas “Hamphat” Cox is a native from Washington DC and found music at an early age while accompanying his parents to Red Foley concerts. He’s been on acoustic, electric and washtub bass since he was 15 years old.


Recordings –
* Phil Wiggins - Cephas and Wiggins
Richmond Blues
Shoulder to Shoulder
Together in Las Vegas
Somebody Told the Truth
Cool Down Dog
Days of August
Flip, Flop, and Fly
From Richmond to Atlanta
Guitar Man

* Eleanor Ellis
Comin' A Time

* Rick Franklin
Searching For Frank
Doin' the Dozens
Hokum Blues

* Thomas "Hamphat" Cox
Tuna Tonight
Various CD/albums by Washington DC artists
Advertising jingles

Set List

* Take Me Back Baby
* Joliet Bound
* Guitar Rag
* Wonder Where My Easy Riders Gone?
* Burnin' Bridges
* Stop and Listen
* What's the Matter With the Mill?
* Cypress Grove
* Ain't Goin' That Way
* I Got Mine
* Bootlegger's Blues
* In My Girlish Days
* Diving Duck
* That'll Happen No More
* Goodnight Irene

Typically sets are about 50 minutes.