Close Window

Wednesday 6am: Sunflower River Cleanup

The Friends of the Sunflower River will be hosting an early morning cleanup of the Sunflower River in downtown Clarksdale in anticipation of the upcoming festival -- and in celebration of the capping of the weir! Wed Aug 8th at 6am. Meet behind Quapaw Canoe Company.

THE WEIR HAS BEEN CAPPED! The concrete cap that will add almost two feet to water elevation has been poured and is now hardening. The “diversion channel” (dug for construction purposes) will be refilled by the end of the week and we’ll eventually see the water filling up the river from bank to bank.

This might be your very last time to paddle on the lowest waters of the Sunflower River. It will never again be this low! After this weekend the waters will start rising again and eventually come close to bank full along the Sunflower River Park in the downtown stretch. And it will never get any lower.

Are we excited? Yes! We’re beavers. The more water the better. We like more water to play around in. The turtles like it better. The fish have more room to swim in. Also: better fishing. Better place for Mighty Quapaws to train as they learn canoe and kayak technique. Aesthetically pleasing. Much more beautiful.

Calling all 1 Mississippi River Citizens! Come lend a hand for a couple of hours tomorrow morning! (Wed, Aug 8)

Meet: 6am behind Quapaw Canoe Company, 3rd and Sunflower, downtown Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Wear: clothes and boots you don’t mind getting muddy, stinky and of course wet.

Bring: water bottle and gloves. (also: smelling salts?)

We’ll Provide: trashbags, canoes, paddles and life jackets.

Finish: 8am

Afterwards: Go take a shower and then continue on to work with the knowledge that you made the world a better place!

Wednesday, 5:30pm:

"True Delta"

Screening & Discussion: 5:30pm - 6:45pm

Delta Cinema - 11 3rd Street, Clarksdale, MS

Reception & "True Delta" Photo Exhibit: 7pm - 9pm

Delta Blues Museum - 1 Blues Alley, Clarksdale, MS

Lucky Find Productions cordially invites you to the Movie Screening of "True Delta"

Followed by a "State of the Blues" panel discussion

Moderated by Living Blues magazine co-founder Jim O'Neal.

Panelists include: filmmaker Lee Quinby and award-winning Mississippi Bluesman James "Super Chikan" Johnson

After the screening please join us for a reception and opening exhibition of photography by Michael Scanlan at the Delta Blues Museum

Wednesday August 8, 2012

Screening & Discussion: 5:30pm - 6:45pm

Delta Cinema - 11 3rd Street, Clarksdale, MS

Reception & "True Delta" Photo Exhibit: 7pm - 9pm

Delta Blues Museum - 1 Blues Alley, Clarksdale, MS

True Delta is a cinematic snapshot of the Blues tradition that remains vibrant in and around Clarksdale, Mississippi--the renowned birthplace of the Blues.

"TRUE DELTA" Written by Lee Quinby | Director of Photography Daniel Cowen

Still Photographer Michael Scanlan | Editor Daniel Cowen

Produced by Erickson Blakney & Lee Quinby | Directed by Lee Quinby & Daniel Cowen

Based on an Original Concept by Erickson Blakney

Wednesday 5:30pm:

“If the Delta Was the Sea” at Miss Del’s

POETRY AND BLUES FEATURED FOR CD RELEASE PARTY AT MISS DEL’S -- Dick Lourie Booksigning at Miss Del’s at 5:30 pm on Wednesday, August 8th

Dick Lourie is a widely published poet and a well-known blues musician, who has been visiting Clarksdale for more than fifteen years. His fascination with the city is demonstrated in his collection of poems about Clarksdale. If the Delta Was the Sea, and the CD combining poetry and blues accompanies the book.

Lourie’s poems reflect many aspects of Clarksdale, from the blues to the city’s history to its mix of cultures, all told through his own keen observations and research, as well as the many interviews he conducted with local people.

In an event celebrating the release of the CD, he will perform at Miss Del’s at 5:30 pm on Wednesday, August 8th. The CD is unique in its blend of poetry and music: Lourie transforms each piece into a collaboration between his spoken poem and a blues band, also featuring his own saxophone solos. At this event he will perform as both reader and sax player, accompanied by local musicians. A book and CD signing will follow the performance.

And about If the Delta Was the Sea, National Book Award winner Ha Jin has written: “[This is] . . . a rich, spacious book. Observing the principles that ‘we are all embedded in history’ and that the individual ‘contains multitudes,’ these poems present a portrait of a place, Clarksdale, Mississippi, and its people, through a unique cultural and social perspective.”

Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival, August 10-12, Clarksdale, Mississippi

25th Annual Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival featuring the best of the downhome blues -- and this year one of the best of the British Invasion blues-inspired rockers: Robert Plant! Incredible lineup! See below for complete schedule.

2012 Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival Lineup (Subject to Change):

Thursday, August 9, 2012 –

Acoustic Blues – Grits, Greens, & Barbecue

*VIP Party – VIP Tent

6:00 – 6:30pm Cadillac John

6:35 – 7:05pm Richard "Daddy Rich" Crisman

7:10 – 7:55pm Terry "Harmonica" Bean

8:00 – 8:45pm Steve "Lightnin'" Malcom

8:50 – 9:35pm Lucious Spiller

Friday, August 10, 2012

Main Stage – Downtown Blues Alley

4:15 – 4:45pm Delta Blues Museum Band

5:00 – 5:30pm Rick Burton Blues Band

5:45 – 6:30pm The Sarah Metcalf Blues Band

6:45 – 7:30pm Otis "TCB" Taylor Blues

7:45 – 8:30pm Joshua "Razor Blade" Stewart

8:45 – 9:45pm O.B. Buchana

10:00 – 11:30pm Bobby Rush

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Acoustic Blues – Main Stage – Downtown Blues Alley

9:00 – 9:30am Arthneice "Gas Man" Jones

9:40 – 10:10am Robert Belfour

10:20 – 10:50am Eddie Cusic

11:00 – 11:30am Pat Thomas

11:40am – 12:10pm Jimmy "Duck" Holmes

12:20 – 12:50pm Anthony "Big A" Sherrod

1:00 – 1:30pm Sharde & the Rising Star Fife and Drum Band

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Electric Blues – Main Stage – Downtown Blues Alley

1:45 – 2:15pm Big Dave Dunavent

2:30 – 3:00pm Heavy Suga’ & The Sweet Tones

3:15 – 4:00pm Kenny Brown

4:15 – 5:00pm Terry "Big T" Williams

5:15 – 6:00pm Bill Howlin’ Madd Perry

6:15 – 7:15pm James "Jimbo" Mathus

7:30 – 8:30pm James "Super Chikan" Johnson

8:30 – 8:45pm Award Presentations: Early Wright Blues Heritage Award, Julius Guy Gospel Heritage Award

8:45 – 9:45pm Charlie Musselwhite

10:00 – 11:30pm Robert Plant and The Sensational Space Shifters

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Gospel Stage – Main Stage – Downtown Blues Alley

5:00 – 5:15pm Fountain of Life COGIC Choir

5:30 – 5:45pm Real Faith Ministries

6:00 – 6:15pm New Covenant MB Church Mass Choir

6:30 – 6:45pm Oakhurt Baptist Choir

7:00 – 7:15pm TNBM Choir

7:30 – 7:45pm St James Temple COGIC Choir

8:00 – 8:15pm Chapel Hill Men's Chorus

8:30 – 8:45pm The Myler Family

9:00 – 9:45pm Susie Golden–Ferguson

10:00 – 11:00pm Vickie Winans

Note from the Sunflower River Blues Association:

“The SRBA welcomes you to the 25th anniversary of our celebration that has remained FREE and open to the public since 1988 thanks to the support of our sponsors, patrons, VIPs, and members who are all volunteers. To join the Sunflower River Blues Association or become a patron, visit levels of support on our website."

The Delta Blues Museum

Full calendar of free events!

The Delta Blues Museum will offer a full calendar of free events for this year's 25th Annual Sunflower Blues and Gospel Festival.

[Museum admission fees apply during regular hours.]

Wednesday, August 8

5:30 pm True Delta Screening at Delta Cinema, 11 Third Street, followed by panel discussion, "State of the Blues," moderated by Living Blues magazine co-founder Jim O'Neal. True Delta is a cinematic snapshot of the blues tradition in and around Clarksdale.

7 pm - 9 pm Reception for "True Delta" photography exhibit at Delta Blues Museum, featuring photographs by Michael Scanlan taken from the film.

On display: "Celebrating 25 Years of the Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival," a new exhibit, DBM galleries.

Thursday, August 9

1 pm Panel discussion: "25 Years of the Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival," in the museum classroom. The panel will be moderated by Mississippi Blues Trail Historian Jim O'Neal, festival co-founder, and features Patty Johnson, festival co-founder; Catherine Clark, festival treasurer and volunteer since the beginning; and Melville Tillis, who co-founded the Gospel Festival with the late James Julius Guy. This is the inaugural program in the museum's "From the Archive" series and is financially assisted by the National Endowment for the Humanities through the Mississippi Humanities Council. It is also generously made possible by the Mississippi Arts Commission, Micheal Loyd Young and the Friends of the DBM.

6 pm Grits & Greens Party for VIP Festival Patrons, on DBM grounds

Friday, August 10

10 am Mississippi Blues Trail Marker dedication for the Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival, on DBM grounds

4 pm Sunflower River Blues Festival begins

Saturday, August 11

9 am Sunflower Festival performances begin

Sunday, August 12

Noon - 5 pm DBM open, special hours for Sunflower Festival Weekend ($7 admission)

Charlie Musselwhite and the Museum Band

in the Muddy Waters Addition

2 pm Fundraiser for Arts & Education Program, featuring Charlie Musselwhite and his band; Lightnin' Malcolm, and others, at the Juke Joint Chapel, Shack Up Inn [donation required].

5 pm Gospel Festival begins, on the DBM stage

For more information contact the Delta Blues Museum 662-627-6820

The Delta Blues Museum is located at #1 Blues Alley in downtown Clarksdale.


Another noteworthy milestone this weekend is the celebration of Roger Stolle’s Cat Head Music & Art 10th Anniversary. Congrats Rog. Ten years of great music, great folk art, and the place to go to for the inside scoop. If Tater’s ghost is anywhere he is out in front of Cat Head playing music and greeting newcomers! As usual Roger will be presenting a host of high quality music and I am sure there will be plenty of Bar-B-Que and trimmings nearby!

Friday, August 10th:

4pm - Zach Divilbiss from Black Mountain Moan

Saturday, August 11th:

11am - SUPERBAD String Band w/R.L. BBQ & Mason Stevens

Noon - Piano Red

1pm - Christian Herring True Blues

2pm - Sean “Bad” Apple

3pm - David Raye

4pm - Davis Coen

Sunday, August 12th: CAT HEAD MINI BLUES FEST with Robert “Wolfman” Belfour, Louis "Gearshifter" Youngblood, Big George Brock, Clarine Wagner, R.L. Boyce & Steve Toney, All Night Long Blues Band and more! Free event in street near Cat Head store. Rain or shine. Store opens 9am. Music 10am till. BBQ available from Big Red.

(Poster/T-shirt art above by Grego.)

Robert Plant Exhibit

at Rock & Blues Museum

Rock & Blues Museum in downtown Clarksdale celebrates its 6th anniversary in August! To celebrate, the Museum has added a new permanent exhibit of Robert Plant & Led Zeppelin, a British rock group which heavily influenced by the blues before experimenting with other music styles. Due to the heavy, guitar-driven blues rock sound of their first two albums, Led Zeppelin are frequently recognized as the progenitors of heavy metal and hard rock. The exhibit features a Robert Plant and Jimmy Page

autographed guitar and Led Zeppelin memorabilia. Robert Plant will headline the Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival in Clarksdale, Mississippi on Saturday August 11, 2012.

For more information about the Rock & Blues museum, hours and their exhibits featuring Clarksdale and Mississippi musicians, go to The museum spans 50 years of music history and collections

from the 1920's through the 1970's. Several vintage jukeboxes were recently added to the permanent displays. Visit Rock 'n Blues at 113 E. Second. The museum is recommended by Lonely Planet Travel Guide 2012 and reviews are on

Rock & Blues Museum

113 East 2nd Street

Clarksdale, MS 38614


Tuesday, Aug 14th

Lower Mississippi River Resource Assessment


Join us 4-7 p.m. Aug. 14 at the Vicksburg Convention Center, 1600 Mulberry St., for an important public meeting on the Lower Mississippi River Resource Assessment, a congressionally authorized study of all uses of the Mississippi River and its floodplain for the benefit of people, wildlife and communities.

This study will examine:

? Information needed for river-related management

? Natural resource habitat needs

? River-related recreation and public access needs

Input from river users and stakeholders will help develop recommendations to Congress. Comments can also be made through this website:

This public meeting is organized by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and its partners for the Lower Mississippi River Resource Assessment (The Nature Conservancy, Lower Mississippi River Conservation Committee, National Audubon Society, Mississippi River Corridor-Tennessee, Wildlife Mississippi, Delta Wildlife and Quapaw Canoe Company).