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Photographer's Note

Sorry, I had to miss Blues Monday yesterday, had to get in to work early and was going until late last night - 8 hours of work and three photographic endeavors, including my niece's high school graduation.

So I figure instead of Tuesday, this would be Bluesday!

This is one of the performers from Memphis in May's Beale St. Music Festival. You are probably wondering why I'm not posting a shot of Steve Miller, or the Cult or some other popular band that played this festival - there were like 63 acts over three days. I love those bands, but nothing intrigues me like the blues, and for several years I have really enjoyed the Mississippi Hill Country blues. The music of R. L. Burnside, T-Model Ford and others I found on Fat Possum Records some years back. These guys are dying at a rapid clip, though, R. L. was by far my favorite - he's been gone 4 years now. I had tickets to see him in 2001, but he took sick and couldn't play. We learned that on our train trip to Chicago from St. Louis, and ended up going to the blues clubs all weekend. One of the acts we saw at The Kingston Mines was this guy's uncle, "Big Jack" Johnson.

This man's name is James Johnson, James "Super Chikan" Johnson is how he was billed. He was playing with a woman on electric piano, and they were great. "Super Chikan" is from North Mississippi and is a self-taught musician, song writer, painter and craftsman. He makes his own guitars, in fact, president Bill Clinton and actor Steven Seagal both own one of his creations. You can see some of the instruments he played at this festival if you click here. That link is purely informational, I had nothing to do with the content. There is also a video of one of his performances at that link.

One day I will get down to Clarksdale, Mississippi and see where Robert Johnson sold his soul to the devil. Thinking about it gives me goosebumps...

Have a fine Bluesday, where ever you are!

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Additional Photos by Reed Radcliffe (rlrad) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 250 W: 18 N: 393] (1845)
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