RELATED EVENTS RUN
THURSDAY TO SUNDAY (APRIL 15-18) FOR 2010 EDITION
Photos by Nan Hughes
Thursday, April 15th --
Students from the DBM Arts & Education Program will
audition for a full scholarship that will place them in
Boston for five weeks this summer, July 10 - August 13,
with 900 high school students from all over the world,
sharpening their playing or singing skills in private
lessons, ensembles, and concert performances. (Private)
Friday, April 16th, 3 p.m. -- Join us
in the DBM classroom for "Conversations With Honeyboy."
At age 94, David "Honeyboy" Edwards is one of
the last of the original Delta Blues masters, and is still
playing and entertaining audiences around the world. Edwards
will be selling and signing his CDs and book, The World
Don't Owe Me Nothing.
Friday, April 16th, 4 p.m. -- Join us
in the DBM classroom to hear William Ferris discuss his
new book and current exhibit at the museum, "Give
My Poor Heart Ease." Give My Poor Heart Ease is a
documentary record of Ferris's home state during the 1960s
and '70s, illustrated with Ferris's photographs of Mississippi
musicians and their communities and includes a CD of original
music and a DVD of original film. The book, available
in the DBM Shop, also features more than 20 interviews
relating frank, dramatic and engaging first-person narratives
about black life and blues music in the heart of the American
Friday, April 16th, 5:30-7 p.m. -- Once
again, the Delta Blues Museum Band will perform at the
DBM Stage for the Care Station's annual Fish Fry fundraiser.
The Care Station, located next to the museum, has been
feeding Clarksdale's hungry for more than 20 years. For
just $10, you get a plateful of catfish, hush puppies,
fries, slaw and a dessert (eat in or take out). Tickets
can be purchased in advance at the museum, as well as
at the Care Station during the event.
Saturday, April 17th -- Three years ago,
Berklee College of Music began a summer
scholarship initiative for students at the Delta Blues
Museum, in Clarksdale, and the Robert Johnson Blues Museum,
in Crystal Springs. To date, four recipients have made
the trip to Berklee's Five-Week Summer Performance Program.
The Berklee Mississippi Music Exchange,
as the effort is now known, develops opportunities to
exchange music, education and culture between Berklee,
the Mississippi Delta and other parts of the state.
On Saturday, the Berklee Mississippi
Exchange Band performs at the Juke Joint Festival at 3:30
p.m. on the Delta Blues Museum Stage, and at 7:00 p.m.
at Ground Zero Blues Club, opening for Rev. Peyton's Big
Damn Band, and Super Chikan.
Saturday, April 17th,
DELTA BLUES MUSEUM STAGE
2:30 p.m.--Delta Blues Museum's Arts
& Education Program Band
3 p.m.--Announcement of Berklee Summer
Music Camp scholarship winner
3:30 p.m.--Berklee Mississippi Exchange
5 p.m.--Stax Music Academy Revue
6 p.m.--Delta State University's "Ol'
April 8, 2010 (Clarksdale, Mississippi) -- "I don't
care what anybody says. There ain't another festival like
it in the world," boasted Nan Hughes, one of Juke
Joint Festival's key organizers. "Where else can
you see Monkeys Riding Dogs one day and hang out in old-school
juke joints the next? I think it's the biggest little
festival in the South."
Juke Joint Festival itself
is Saturday, April 17th in Clarksdale,
Mississippi. Related events start Thursday and carry
on through Sunday night. Last year's festival weekend
drew fans from at least 43 U.S. states and 17 foreign
"We call it 'half blues festival,
half small-town fair and all about the Delta' for a reason,"
explained co-organizer Goldie Hirsberg. "During the
day we have activities for both visiting tourists and
local families. At night, well, that's throw-down time!
That's for the adults."
Juke Joint Festival Weekend kicks
off with a bang on Thursday night (April 15) when Grammy-winner
Mathus presents "Mosquitoville: Mississippi
Songs & Stories" live on the Delta Cinema Stage
(113 3rd St.). Sponsored by Clarksdale
Revitalization, the presentation promises to delve
into the Magnolia State's rich music and mythology. Doors
open at 5pm with two free shows at 6pm and 7:30pm.
festival-related activities include monkeys riding dogs
from Pontotoc, Mississippi, as well as Coahoma County's
latest Mississippi Blues Trail
Marker dedication. The noon dedication at the WROX Museum
(257 Delta Avenue) will recognize an early location of
Clarksdale's famous WROX
blues/gospel radio station. The event will be following
by a William Ferris "Give
My Poor Heart Ease" book signing and live blues
revue at Cat
Head Delta Blues & Folk Art across the street
(252 Delta Avenue). From there, additional events travel
down the street and include "Conversations with Honeyboy
Edwards" at the Delta
Blues Museum and a "Theo The Boogieman"
performance at the Rock
& Blues Museum. More live blues follows that night
at the clubs and jukes.
For many visiting tourists, it's
the music that matters most, and Saturday will be a day
for the history books.
"We've got Mississippi blues
musicians from 8 years young to 94 years old on Saturday,"
noted Roger Stolle, music coordinator and festival co-founder.
"It's just a crazy list of real-deal legends. Big
George Brock, Big Jack Johnson, Big
T Williams. Super Chikan, Watermelon Slim, Duck
Holmes. Cadillac John, Gearshifter, T-Model
Ford. It may sound more like a wrestling show, grocery
list or used car lot to some... but that's the Delta blues
for you. Wild names and even wilder music!"
Other notable blues musicians include
Cedell Davis, Johnny Rawls, Stacy Mitchhart, Robert Belfour,
Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band, The Scissormen, Mr. Tater,
Bilbo Walker, Cedric Burnside & Lightnin' Malcolm
and many more. Among the performers are many of the stars
of last year's Blues Music Award-winning film "M
for Mississippi." The future of the blues will also
be well-represented by student musicians and their instructors
from the Delta Blues Museum, Berklee Mississippi Exchange,
DSU's Ol' Skool Revue and Stax Music Academy.
Saturday alone will feature eight
official daytime stages and 16 nighttime juke joint venues.
The festival's daytime music is free while the nighttime
music can be had for the reasonable price of a $10 wristband.
The wristband also gets attendees onto the four nighttime
bus shuttles as well as a fifth shuttle that would have
made Robert Johnson himself proud.
"This year, our friends at
C&J Railroad and Mississippi Delta Railroad are running
an actual locomotive with passenger cars back and forth
between downtown's historic Train Depot and Hopson Plantation
on Saturday night," said Hughes. "The train
will also run roundtrip excursions on Friday night and
Saturday lunchtime, and most of the trips will feature
blues performances on board. How cool is that?"
Pre-sale wristbands for Saturday
night's main event will be available in front of Cat
Head Delta Blues & Folk Art (252 Delta Avenue)
on Thursday and Friday afternoon (April 15-16) as well
as at the main festival tent on Saturday and at the nighttime
venues while quantities last.
Other Juke Joint Festival-related
activities on Saturday include a 5K/8K Run, Robinson's
Racing Pigs, Mini Film Fest at Delta Cinema, "Passport
to Downtown" contest, arts & crafts vendors,
food vendors and special events inside downtown businesses
and restaurants. Family-friendly activities include a
petting zoo, rock wall, Segway course, Moonbounce, kiddie
train, face painting, Strut-Your-Mutt contest, student
art show and more.
night's festival events kick off with the inaugural "Miss
Sarah Award" presentation at Sarah's Kitchen (278
Sunflower Avenue), 7pm. Named after the late blues kitchen
owner, Miss Sarah Moore, the new award will be presented
to two individuals each year (one past/one present) who
have made notable contributions towards blues music, Mississippi
tourism and the city of Clarksdale. After the awards,
blues godfather David "Honeyboy" Edwards will
perform, starting off the nighttime juke joint crawl's
"On Sunday, the festivities
continue with the always free and fun Cat Head Mini Blues
Fest as well as the annual Ground Zero Blues Club blues
brunch," said Stolle.
Hotel rooms are still available
at the Isle of Capri in nearby Lula. In addition to running
a Saturday bus shuttle from the Isle of Capri hotel to
downtown Clarksdale, the hotel is offering a special event
rate at 1-800-the-Isle (promo code "JUKE").
The hotel/casino is a sponsor of the festival.
Go to www.jukejointfestival.com
for more details on the Juke Joint Festival & Related
Events, April 15-18, 2010.
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JUKE JOINT FESTIVAL NIGHTTIME MUSIC
SATURDAY, APRIL 17TH (9pm unless noted; $10 wristband
Ground Zero Blues Club - Berklee
Mississippi Exchange (7pm), Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band
(8pm), Super Chikan (9pm)
Red's Lounge - Big Jack Johnson
Hopson Commissary (front stage) - Big George Brock
Hopson Commissary (back porch) - Brian Sivils with Buddy
Juke Joint Chapel (Shackup Inn) - Cedric Burnside &
Sarah's Kitchen - "Miss Sarah Award" (7pm),
Honeyboy Edwards (7:30pm), Terry "Harmonica"
Delta Blues Room - Josh "Razorblade" Stewart
Delta Amusement Cafe - Guitar Mikey & the Real Thing
Stone Pony - Davis Coen
Hambone Gallery - Stan Street & the Hambone Band
Tricia's - Terry "Big T" Williams
Bluesberry Cafe - Mark "Mule Man" Massey
Ann "Action" Jackson, Earl The Pearl, Hal Reed
& "Mr. Johnnie" Billington
James "T-Model" Ford,
Honeyboy Edwards, Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band, Big George
Brock, Bilbo Walker & more. BBQ for sale.
NOTE: ALL TIMES/SCHEDULES "SUBJECT
TO CHANGE." (It's the Delta y'all!)