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Teaching Music Industry Studies in the most unique facilities in the South


Hilpert and Trisha letters

DEAR FELLOW BLUES LOVERS, Thank you so much for celebrating the blues this weekend. As you know, my organization,, is pleased to support the Delta Music Institute through Delta State University with a grant of $250,000. The blues is such an important part of our American musical heritage. Here in Mississippi lie the heart and soul of the blues so there’s no better place for my philanthropy to help keep it alive and well. We need to make sure that our children and young adults embrace this art form for generations to come. I’m proud to know that our contribution will help maintain scholarships as a top priority. I urge all of you to take a moment to learn more about what Delta State University is doing. Thank you all for making this weekend happen.

All My Best,

Charles Annenberg Weingarten Founder of

other letters

WELCOME TO BLESSISSIPPI, On behalf of Delta State University I welcome you to the Mississippi Delta, the Home of American Music. Our Delta Music Institute is grateful for the chance to help with this event and to promote the culture and traditions of this unique region. We are blessed to call the Delta home, and we are glad to welcome everyone to our home. The Blessissippi Crossroads Concert is a one-ofa-kind happening. We’re proud that it is hosted by one of Delta State’s most famous honorary degree recipients, Dr. Morgan Freeman. His contributions to the Delta enable students to realize their dreams, and his presence here is yet another example of his determination to help others succeed. Our appreciation extends to the Annenberg Foundation for their generous support of this event and the Delta Music Institute. Likewise, we thank everyone whose help has made this glorious evening possible. Enjoy your evening! John M. Hilpert, President, Delta State University

WELCOME, Y’ALL, TO THE BLESSISSIPPI CROSSROADS CONCERT! The Delta Music Institute is grateful to the Annenberg Foundation for their support of the Delta Music Institute, our music industry studies program at Delta State University. Their generous contribution will enable the DMI to develop many exciting opportunities for nurturing creativity in the youth of the Mississippi Delta. The Mississippi Delta is without question the birthplace of the Blues, and it would be almost impossible to dispute the fact that, without Mississippi, there would be no American music. Mississippi proudly lays claim to the King of the Blues, the Father of Country Music, the King of Rock and Roll, and more GRAMMY™ winners per capita than any other state in the Union. Thank you all for coming to the Blessissippi Crossroads Concert! We appreciate your continued support of the Delta Music Institute and all the young musicians in the Delta. Tricia Walker, Director, Delta Music Institute

THE ROAD TO BLESSISSIPPI HAS BEEN NOTHING SHORT OF A SEMI-EPIC ADVENTURE. From the Crossroads in Clarksdale and grocking with Morgan and Bill to dinner with Bobby Keys, Dougie and Robert in Nashville, Don, Nina and the Rock N’ Roll tour of the Gibson factory, Bill Wax everywhere at the IBC, and being accosted by John Jacob in Memphis, we have been blessed with every aspect of this production. To everyone who gave us a hand, or a cocktail, you know who you are and we love you—especially the Gibson Foundation, Peavey, Pearl Drums, Canon, and Ground Zero Blues Club. The Mississippi Delta is the soul of American music. Combine the deep rich soil of the Delta with the people who live there and the result is a particular form of musical magic that has spread around the world. It has been our honor to work in some small way to ensure that unique tradition is passed on for future generations. Our only request of you the audience is this: please be generous and help us and all of the artists performing tonight in supporting the educational programs at Delta State University. Celebrate the Blues with us and a heartfelt thank you for being part of this very special evening where it all began.

Jerry Cope & Gary Vincent Producers

GROUND ZERO BLUES CLUB IS PLEASED TO HOST THE BLESSISSIPPI CONCERT! Morgan and I sincerely appreciate the hard work put into this event by Jerry Cope, Gary Vincent and Robin Young. We are friends of Delta State University and know that students of music will flourish under its programs. Enjoy the evening.

Bill Luckett

DMI Call to action

Mississippi can rightfully lay claim to being Ground Zero for great American music. Donate to the Delta Music Institute and help us develop the next generation of Mississippi musicians! Your donations to the programs of the Delta Music Institute at Delta State University will increase the number of young students that will be directly impacted by our music and music technology curriculum. Your donations will be used to help cover operational expenses of the DMI Mobile Music Lab, allowing more visits to more schools; to provide scholarship funds for underserved students interested in attending DMI Summer Camp; and to provide scholarship opportunities for talented and need-based students seeking a fouryear degree in music industry studies at DSU.

To make a donation to the DMI, scan the QR code with your smart phone, email or call 662.846.4579.

Headliner 1

Bobby’s life has been a sort of rock ‘n’ roll folk tale . . . his experiences reflect the coming of age of rock ‘n’ roll itself. The history of rock ‘n’ roll is littered with musical

of Stars Tour through decades as top touring

prodigies, charismatic storytellers, oblivion-

and session sax man for the likes of Elvis Presley,

seeking omnivores and odds-defying survivors

John Lennon and Yoko Ono, George Harrison,

whose contributions to the soundtracks of our

Delaney & Bonnie, Joe Cocker, B.B. King, Keith

lives have attained for them—or at least their

Moon, Sheryl Crow and countless others, and

work—a measure of immortality. Rarely, though,

onto, perhaps most famously, an ongoing gig

do all of these traits come together in the form

as a de facto Rolling Stone from 1970 onward,

of a single person as they do in the case of

Bobby’s raw talent and outsized personality have

legendary saxophone player Bobby Keys.

elevated him from sideman to something closer

From years on the road during the waning days

to a rock ‘n’ roll icon.

of early rock ‘n’ roll with hitmakers like Bobby Vee and the various acts on Dick Clark’s Caravan

Headliner 2

Among musicians, the highest compliment is when someone is a “player’s player.” You can’t get that with flash and dazzle; you

and his credits include Feat’s Oh, Atlanta. He’s

have to earn it with substance. Elton John, for

presently working with Grateful Dead lyricist

one, would tell you that Bill Payne, co-founder

Robert Hunter on a number of songs destined for

of Little Feat, is a player’s player, one of the

the next Little Feat album.

finest keyboardists in the entire rock world. His trademark barrelhouse blues piano, along

When he isn’t seated at a keyboard, he has a

with a powerful but sensitive attack on the

camera in his hand, and his photographs have

Hammond B-3, have made him a popular session

been shown in various galleries. Two ears and

man, working with Jimmy Buffett, James Taylor,

two eyes . . . Bill Payne seems to get more out of

Jackson Browne, Bob Seger, Phil Lesh, J.J. Cale,

the package than most.

the Doobie Brothers, Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Raitt, Rodney Crowell, Bryan Adams and Pink Floyd. And when he doesn’t play, he writes songs,

Grammy Award-winning harmonica virtuoso Sugar Blue is not your typical bluesman . . . Born James Whiting, he was raised in Harlem,

their Some Girls album. Blue performs his own

New York, where his mother was a singer and

version of the song on his 1993 Alligator debut

dancer at the fabled Apollo Theatre. He spent

Blue Blazes.

his childhood among the musicians and show people who knew his mother, including the great

Sugar Blue incorporates what he has learned

Billie Holiday, and decided that he wanted to be

into his visionary and singular style—technically

a performer.

dazzling yet wholly soulful. He bends, shakes, spills flurries of notes with simultaneous

Blue has played and recorded with musicians

precision and abandon, combining dazzling

ranging from Willie Dixon to Stan Getz to Frank

technique with smoldering expressiveness and

Zappa to Johnny Shines to Bob Dylan . . . he is

gives off enough energy to light up several

perhaps best known for his signature riff and

square city blocks. And he sings too!

solo on the Rolling Stones’ hit Miss You from

Maria Muldaur is best known world wide for her ‘74 mega-hit Midnight at the Oasis. Despite her considerable Pop music success,

In the 39 years since Midnight at the Oasis

her 39-year career could best be described

Maria has toured extensively worldwide and

as a long and adventurous odyssey through

has recorded 39 solo albums, covering all kinds

the various forms of American Roots Music.

of American Roots music, including Gospel,

During the folk revival of the early ‘60s, she

R&B, Jazz and Big Band (not to mention several

began exploring and singing early Blues,

award-winning children’s albums), before settling

Bluegrass, Appalachian “Old Timey” music,

comfortably into her favorite idiom, the Blues,

beginning her recording career in 1963 with

in recent years. Often joining forces with some

the Even Dozen Jug Band and shortly thereafter

of the top names in the business, Maria has

joining the very popular Jim Kweskin Jug Band,

recorded and produced on average an album per

touring and recording with them throughout

year, several of which have been nominated for

the ‘60s.

Grammy and other awards.

Every track tells a story and brings the listener along on a ride they will never forget. Albert Bashor is a Mississippi Delta and Chicago Blues musician. He is a singer, songwriter and guitarist whose years of experience include playing the Blues circuit around the world with bands such as Root Boy Slim and the Sex Change Band, Dr. Hector and the Groove Injectors, Alex Taylor (James Taylor’s brother), Bo Diddley and James Peterson. Traveling the circuit gave him the creative mojo to create authentic blues music, including releases like, Rollin’ and Tumblin’ and Jukin’

Down Johnson Street. The respect that Bashor has for the music penetrates through his songs and recordings. Bashor is hardly new to the scene. He is a regular session player at nowdefunct Kingsnake Records, and he has recorded with the likes of Noble Thin Man Watts, Nat Aderley, Reverend Billy C. Wirtz, Chicago Bob Nelson and Lucky Peterson.

Since the success of his first record, Blues Come Home to

Roost, Johnson has been busy performing solo and with his band, The Fighting Cocks, at festivals and clubs throughout the U.S. and Europe. He has also continued to release recordings at a steady pace.

Bill “Howl-N-Madd” Perry, performer & songwriter, was born the son of a moonshiner in Tula, Mississippi. Bill has traveled the world performing, opening in Juke Joints and in the most sophisticated venues.

Dr. Alphonso Sanders is the Director of the B.B. King Recording Studio and the Chair of Fine Arts at Mississippi Valley State University. Dr. Sanders has performed at many local, regional and international festivals and is a regular at most of the Mississippi Clubs and Jooks.

T-Model thinks he’s seventy-five but isn’t sure. Whatever the year, he’s still cussing, fighting and outdrinking men a quarter his age. It’s not unusual for T-Model to play eight hours a night. He keeps going until no one’s left standing.

With his soulful blues guitar licks, rich blues voice, iconic blues hats and great facial gestures as he plays, King is the real deal. A regular performer at the legendary Subway Lounge, King was featured in the documentary Last of the Mississippi Jukes and has been honored with three blues markers.

Jerry Jemmott, one of the preeminent session bassists of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, has worked with an impressive cross-section of the era’s finest soul, jazz and blues artists from Aretha Franklin to Herbie Hancock. He currently tours with the Allman Brothers Band and plays around Mississippi.

Back in the day, Mickey toured internationally with the Temptations, was Willie Foster’s band leader and played with the Rolling Stones. Considered a master of the guitar, he is featured in H.C. Porter’s The Legends of the Blues at Home.

Robert Belfour is one of the few living links to the raw and primitive tradition of Mississippi blues. His style of blues is rooted in the Mississippi Hill Country, a unique one-chord style that lends a more primitive and raw feel to the music.

“The Amazing Jimmi Mayes” has played drums for major artists from Marvin Gaye to Jimi Hendrix. He has issued two albums of his work and has just collaborated on a book about his life while continuing to play and sing.

Rick Lewis has been playing drums for over 30 years and is best known for his funky playing and great drum shuffle. Rick was a regular drummer for King Edward at the famous Subway Lounge in Jackson and was featured in Last of the Mississippi


Abdul Rasheed began his career as a bass player and vocalist with King Edward. A regular vocalist at the Subway Lounge, Abdul was featured in Last of the Mississippi Jukes and is a host for Blue Monday every week at Hal & Mal’s in Jackson.

Director Doug Gilmore Line Producer Robert Eva Stage Producer John Magnusson Stage Manager Mike West Live Sound Walt Busby Press Liason Robin Young

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Blessissippi Blues Program  

This document is the Blessissippi Blues Program. Design by Mothlite Media.

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