Some astute fans were asked which two artists they would combine to describe one Raiford Starke, and they said:
“John Prine meets Ted Nugent.”
“Merle Travis meets Link Ray.”
“Jimmy Page meets Jerry Reed.”
“Doc Watson meets Johnny Guitar Watson.”
Actually, Raiford Starke is nothing if not David Allan Coe meets Jimi Hendrix, an outlaw country folk singer steeped in southern rock and psychedelic blues guitar. He’s an American original.
Colin Kenny is proud of his real name, but got stuck with the gallows humor of “Raiford Starke” long ago, branded by prison walls without ever having walked through their gates. It’s a Florida brand, the duo of state pens in the name recognizable to locals and fans of Ol’ Sparky, but Raiford Starke’s only crime is indecent distortion.