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Tag: Mississippi (Page 2 of 3)

Mississippi

Blues and Civil Rights Heritage Tour of the Mississippi Delta region

On Friday April 16, 2010 The Mississippi Delta Music Exchange group was taken on an extensive Blues and Civil Rights Heritage Tour of the Mississippi Delta region. Director of the Delta Center conducted the tour for Culture and Learning at Delta State University in Cleveland, Mississippi.

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Mississippi Music Exchange

Bill Banfield in the Control Room at Clarksdale Studio

Berklee Multicultural Educator – Program Manager, Kevin Johnson writes from the Mississippi Music Exchange visit to the 7th Annual Clarksdale Juke Joint Festival.  For more information check out the press release on Berklee.edu.

Today faculty members Lenny Stallworth and Bill Banfield, along with students Taylor Gordon (drums), Mario Castro (sax), Eric Finland (keys) and Director of Media Relations, Allen Bush and I arrived in Clarksdale, Mississippi to attend the Juke Joint Festival. Allen and Lenny conducted auditions at the Delta Blues Museum and two talented young Mississippi musicians will be awarded full scholarships to the 5-week summer program.

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A musical and educational exchange grows in Mississippi

Year three.  The principal mission of the trip to the most Southern place on earth remains the same: finding two young musicians qualified for the Five-Week Summer Performance Program and awarding them full scholarships. What is new, is that now I have company down here.  No longer is it just I, Allen Bush/Berklee PR guy/deep fan of Mississippi music and culture, but now a team of students, faculty and another administrator.

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Faith and gospel leads teen to Boston from Robert Johnson Blues Showcase

Crystal Springs is more then 200 miles south of Clarksdale.  It is 10 miles north of Hazlehurst, where Robert Johnson was born.  A grandson of the most legendary Delta blues musician is Steven Johnson.  He and his family make their home here.  Steven’s father, Claude, Robert Johnson’s son, and his mother live close by.  At one time, Steven was a teacher at the Crystal Springs High School, where he also attended.  He is now vice president of the Robert Johnson Blues Museum and Foundation.  The storefront museum is in the Crystal Springs historic district.  Among its items is an upright piano that a local resident donated after a family member admitted seeing Robert Johnson play it.

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Alumni at the Juke Joint Fest

In between sets by the Delta Blues Museum’s Arts and Education Program and Grammy-winning Delta blues legend Honeyboy Edwards, I had the chance to catch-up with a couple of people who had spent time on Berklee’s campus.

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