Pinetop Perkins, Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner and Blues Hall of Fame inductee, was born Joseph William Perkins on July 7, 1913 in Belzoni, Mississippi and is still quite active on blues music circuits despite his advanced age.
Mr. Perkins acquired his highly unusual nickname in 1931 as a result of his desire to make the acquaintance of a certain Loni Mae Evans of nearby Silver Springs, Mississippi. Ms Evans was badly frightened by a fierce-looking bald-headed man who came to her family's home to collect a debt her father owed when she was a child, and thereafter harbored a lifelong dread of bald men.
As luck would have it, Mr. Perkins had lost nearly all his hair at a relatively early age, and so, felt he had no chance with Ms Evans unless he could find something to cover his naked dome that would allow him to remove his hat in the lady's presence. But the young struggling blues musician had no money to spare for adornments like toupees.
While sitting on his front porch one evening, Mr. Perkins caught sight of pine tree branches waving in the breeze and had an inspiration. The next afternoon, he called on Ms Evans wearing a odd-looking wig he had painstakingly fashioned from pine needles and dyed with boot polish. His charming manner diverted enough of the young lady's attention away from his outdoorsy-smelling coiffure and she consented to accompany him for ice cream and conversation. A friend of Pinetop's they encountered along the way supplied the nickname Mr. Perkins has carried ever since.