Saturday, September 20, 2008

"Black Prairie Blues," Macon

Eddy Clearwater, Steve Bell and Willie King at the 
marker dedication. Photo by Scott Barretta

Despite scorching heat over 200 people showed up on August 19, 2008 for the unveiling of the marker in Macon. The topic, "Black Prairie Blues," acknowledges the oft overlooked traditions of this geographic region to the east of the hill regions, and celebrated musicians including Eddy Clearwater, who drove down from Illinois for the event, local hero Willie King, and the late harmonica great Carey Bell, who was represented by his harmonica-playing son Steve Bell, who lives in Kosciusko, MS. 

Unfortunately Carey's son Lurrie, an accomplished blues artist, was on tour and couldn't make it to the event. After the ceremony Willie King's band the Liberators performed, and King was later joined by Clearwater and Steve Bell, who was accompanied by Jackson-based guitarist Jesse Robinson, who often works with Bell.

At the unveiling Clearwater reunited with childhood friend 
O.C. Gilkey, who inspired him to take up the guitar. Photo by Scott Barretta

Steve Bell, Eddie Clearwater and Willie King performing after the marker unveiling
Bell, Clearwater and King performing together. Photo by Scott Barretta

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