Bentonia bluesman to donate guitar, memorabilia during Sunflower Blues Festival
(ST. LOUIS) Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, the acclaimed country blues guitarist whose debut CD was released to rave reviews this spring, will further cement his standing as a living blues legend at a ceremony at 4 p.m. August 12 at the Delta Blues Museum in Clarksdale, Mississippi. At the event, the museum will dedicate a new display to Holmes, the last living link to the Bentonia blues style made famous by Skip James and Holmes’ mentor Jack Owens.
Holmes will contribute to the display by donating the first guitar he ever bought, a battered and much-loved axe purchased in 1976. The display will also feature photographs, posters and a signed copy of Back to Bentonia, Holmes’ debut CD that was released by Broke & Hungry Records in April. The disc has been proclaimed “a traditional blues masterpiece” and a “contender for best traditional blues release of 2006” by blues critics.
Although Holmes, 59, has only recently begun his recording career, he has been playing country blues for three decades and has spent his entire life surrounded by bluesmen, including Jack Owens, who began teaching Holmes to play in the 1970s. Holmes also is the owner of the famed Blue Front Cafe in Bentonia, one of the oldest juke joints in Mississippi.
“All my life I’ve been trying to keep these blues alive, to preserve them for another generation,” Holmes said. “That’s just what the Delta Blues Museum is all about. I’m excited they think enough about my music to give me a display.”
At the dedication ceremony, Holmes will bring along a guitar of slightly newer vintage and will perform a couple of Bentonia blues classics along with one or two of his own compositions.
In addition to the Delta Blues Museum event, Holmes will have two other live appearances in Clarksdale on Aug. 12. He will perform a 3 p.m. set at the Delta Avenue Park Acoustic Stage (across from Cat Head Delta Blues & Folk Art) and will play an early evening set beginning at 7 p.m in one of Clarksdale’s most authentic juke joints, Club 2000 on Issaquenna Avenue.
WHAT: Dedication Ceremony for Jimmy “Duck” Holmes display at the Delta Blues Museum
WHEN: 4 p.m. August 12, 2006
WHERE: Delta Blues Museum
#1 Blues Alley
CONTACT: Jeff Konkel at 314/304.8928
or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Broke & Hungry Records is an independent label dedicated to preserving and promoting real-deal blues by real-deal blues artists. Headquartered in St. Louis, the label is home to Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, Terry “Big T” Williams, Wesley Jefferson and Odell Harris.
Located in historic Clarksdale, Mississippi, the Delta Blues Museum is dedicated to creating a welcoming place where visitors find meaning, value and perspective by exploring the history and heritage of this unique American musical art form known as the Blues.