Photographs by Adam Smith

The Last One Left

Robert Lee Coleman, at 18, led a crew of teenage musicians in Macon, Georgia, who played so hot even James Brown came to town recruiting. At 78, he plays even hotter, and he vows to “play until I die.”

On the Rails of the Mystery Train

He’s almost 90, and he teaches music in a little school in Georgia. He’s also an unsung giant of American folk music who played with Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger. Meet Frank Hamilton.

Escape Into Mayhem

Two Georgia promoters combine punk rock and pro wrestling to create a close-quarters blend of two slam-bang art forms. And yes, art is the right word.