Origins of the 308 Blues Club and Cafe

“Once upon a time, a man-child was born… birthed from the murky waters of the Indian Bayou. Born under the full moon of a heated summers night.”

And, so the story goes…

Yes, I was born right here in the Heart of the Mississippi Delta… right here in the town of Indianola. My parents soon transplanted northward for greater opportunity and a better life. However, I would find my childhood filled with many summers spent in my birth place. Though I was reluctant to make those visits back to the south, my parents wanted to instill within me a sense of origin… my roots.

The Blues came over me later in my life. I grew quickly into a man tormented by life’s demons. I soon found myself displaced… torn from my wife and child. What was left? I found solace in the music that raised me and brought me through. It was that very same music that belonged to my grandfather… the Blues.

Welcome to the Home of the Blues

November 1st, 2003, The 308 Blues Club and Cafe opened. We were the premier location for local Blues acts to present their craft upon our stage. The 308 Blues Club and Cafe received much fanfare overseas. We found that most of our audience was International and we kept our performances strictly to that of our name.

In the past, we have featured the talents of David Lee Durham, Jay Kirgis, Mississippi Slim, John Horton, Mickey Rogers, Barbara Looney, Lil’ Dave Thompson, Bill Abel, Paul “Wine” Jones, and many others. As the 308 grew, just as the Blues grew over time, we took many different turns and curves with the music. Blues music varies and helped structure many music genres, including Gospel, Rock, Jazz, Southern Soul, and Country. As a musician, I share this growth as well.

The 308 Blues Club and Cafe is not just a bar and grill, and was conceived as not just a place to be entertained, but to educate about Blues culture, Americana, and Roots music. And in this music, The 308 Blues Club and Cafe has been able to transcend much of the division within the area. Yes, the Blues truly heals.

After a great three-year run, I left the Delta to make a new life. However, I found myself yearning to return home and once again baptise myself in that bayou water. As Davey told me, “There’s just something about that Mississippi Mud. Once you get it on your feet, you can never leave.” And now, I am home.

Looking Forward… Keeping the Blues Alive

The 308 Blues Club and Cafe has come a long way. We’ve been through many personnel as well as many personal changes. We are constantly growing and bringing innovation to the Mississippi Delta. There are more bookings coming. We believe strongly in presenting local talent.

For those who hunger for real southern cuisine, we have remodelled the kitchen and are now open for business. And with your cafe visit, be sure to bring your laptop and surf the web. The 308 Blues Club and Cafe is now the Mississippi Delta’s newest wi-fi hotspot. Enjoy free, wireless Internet access on us! Remember, the 308 Blues Club and Cafe is here to both entertain and educate.

If you haven’t been here in a while, check us out and get reacquainted. If you’re a new face in town, stop by and make yourself at home. Everyone here is family. Most of our staff were past patrons who just wouldn’t leave… and that’s a good thing. I’m sure I’ll see you around. You might catch me behind the bar serving up a drink, hustling newbies on the pool table, or sitting in with one of the bands. Either way, I am home.

Live performance filmed Saturday, September 17th, 2011, featuring the Kevin Waide Project of Tupelo, Mississippi with guest saxophonist, Jon Allen. Original content from the 308 Blues Club and Cafe website. Enjoy!

308 Blues Club & Cafe on Urbanspoon

About Mario Strong

Celebrating blues culture and promoting roots music worldwide. Fully engaged in an ongoing personal campaign towards raising social awareness and promoting a healthy consciousness throughout the Mississippi Delta. View all posts by Mario Strong

Share your thoughts...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: