This past weekend, Indianola, Mississippi welcomed one of its most renowned native sons, Mr. Riley B. King, or simply B.B. as most of the world knows him. Once again, B.B. King headlined the annual homecoming festival which carries his namesake. The city as always was alive in celebration of King’s return.
In previous years, the concert was held in Fletcher Park by the Indian Bayou. However, as a means to centralize all activities and put everything within walking distance, the main festivities were held on the B.B. King Museum grounds. This was great for me, as the 308 Blues Club and Cafe is located in the backyard of the museum and provided direct access backstage. I truly enjoyed talking with several of the visiting musicians, journalists, and fans. Though we were quite busy throughout the day at the 308, I was able to break free and enjoy some of the performances. Jake and The Pearl Street Jumpers dazzled the crowd with their brand of Delta Blues and Soul. I also caught pieces of Willie Clayton’s show. Yes, he is true Southern Soul. And thankfully, I was able to enjoy a few minutes of B.B. King’s performance.
This year the 308 Blues Club and Cafe welcomed several members of our International fan base. Countries represented this year included: Cambodia, Belgium, South Africa, Norway, Germany, and France. I would like to thank you all for making the long trek and visiting with us here in the Mississippi Delta. I would also like to thank members of The Kevin Waide Project of Tupelo, Mississippi for putting on one heck of show at the 308. Kev, Skip, Jimmy, Foosh, Jason… Gentlemen, we must do this again.
And to those who missed this year’s B.B. King Homecoming Festival, please plan well ahead for the next. And if you can’t wait til next year and need a quick blues fix, the 308 Blues Club and Cafe is here. We’ve been delivering the blues to the Greater Mississippi Delta since 2003. We ain’t going no where!
It’s not just about the music… it’s a way of life.
Photo courtesy of Larry & Karen