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(a day early 'cause I could)
"All the blues that's fit to print."
It's a "good news, bad news" report this month, y'all. Please get vaxed and let's rock out... together.

THE GOOD NEWS? Clarksdale, Mississippi's blues music, tourist visitor and downtown business communities are hanging in so far. And we are (for now) back to 7 days of weekly live music plus have several great festivals on the horizon. Our musicians and club owners who have recently dealt with Covid are thankfully still with us and back to bluesin'. Vaccines work.

THE BAD NEWS? Well, folks... because of the slow 'n low vax rates in the  region, the festival cancellations are starting to pile up — including King Biscuit Blues Festival (Helena, AR), Cat Head Mini Blues Fest (Clarksdale, MS), Pinetop Perkins Homecoming (Clarksdale, MS), New Orleans Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest (New Orleans, LA), Mississippi Book Festival (Jackson, MS), etc., so far.
Fortunately, not everyone is giving up. From the New Orleans bar/restaurant scene to Chicago's Buddy Guy's Legends and Oxford's Proud Larry's/The Lyric... from Coachella and DC Jazz Fest to the upcoming Deep Blues Festival in Clarksdale... more and more places are simply requiring proof of vaccination (or in many cases, a recent negative test) in order to continue... in order to avoid going silent again. Please check CDC guidelines, state/local ordinances and festival/venue websites for details before traveling. And #VisitMSresponsibly. Thanks.
THE GREAT NEWS is that it is super easy to get vaxed up for FREE. (I'm a big fan of our pro-music/business vaccines and even bigger fan of FREE!) Get vaxed in Mississippi via Elsewhere, please check
All ready to go bluesin'? Then, enjoy.
As always, thanks for everyone's support of CAT HEAD during our current global pandemic. We've started to have a few of those "zero in-store sales days" again, so your online shopping power helps us keep the lights on and some food in the pug bowl! :) Thanks for that. Mask up, and shop CAT HEAD in-person at 11am every day or on the web now at
All the best from 19-year-old CAT HEAD,
Roger (and greedy Ayler Pug, seen here pandemic-hording Nylabones.)

Clarksdale, Mississippi — 7 days of live blues and around a dozen annual festivals... for real, y'all!

Please get your shots, grab your mask, and come join us for live blues and more every single day. Our SOUNDS AROUND TOWN beckons you...

Watch for special live-streams, supported by Visit Clarksdale Tourism...
Go to (or LFC's Facebook page) to find how who's streaming blues from where, when! LFC has helped us keep the blues rolling (and musicians get paid) for well over a year, now. If you've enjoyed some of the streams, then definitely check out Colleen Buyers' other web-promoted project — Shared Experiences — via SE organizes and facilitates super-cool, small-scale "experiences" (lessons, tours, interactions) with Clarksdale & the Mississippi Delta people, places and things. Please check it all out.

Got shot? Then, get you some... RED'S OLD-TIMERS BLUES FEST this Saturday, y'all!
Red Paden is an old juke joint soldier — fighting the good fight for the blues, week in and week out. He's got his two-shot Moderna (and Big Charles has his one-shot J&J), but he's also got faith in us. Even as skeptical as he often is of humanity, he trusts that folks will do the right thing. He trusts that folks will help him keep his elderly musicians and blues posse safe during this weekend's 3rd annual-ish RED'S OLD-TIMERS BLUES FEST. He prefers vaxed folks. He hopes for masks in close quarters. And he requires socially distancing on the wide-open outdoor grounds of his festival. Oh, and maybe leave the selfies and up-close interviews for next time.

From 60-somethings to 94-year-old Cadillac John Nolden, Red is a man of his word. This is an "old-timers" festival.
WHEN: Saturday, 9/4, from noon till 7pm or so.
LOCATION: Martin Luther King Park Stage on the rolling hills of the Sunflower River that cuts through downtown Clarksdale, MS.
LINEUP: See the poster below. Always subject to change, of course.
COST: It's a free event, y'all, but feel free to donate to the musicians, and be sure to support Red's Lounge during the weekend.
WHAT TO BRING: A chair or blanket. Maybe some bug spray and sunblock. Hopefully not an umbrella.
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QUESTIONS? Drop by Red's Lounge this week, and ask the big man himself. His answers may be enigmatic, but that's half the fun.

And that's not all... annual-ish MAG FEST returns to Clarksdale, Mississippi this weekend as well...
MAG FEST is a casual, blues 'n roots music event, organized by the Magnusson brothers and held at a couple venues — 9/3-5, 2021.
- Fri 9/3 at 8pm - Terry "Big T" Williams (a recent update to schedule) at Shack Up Inn (cover).
- Sat 9/4 at 8pm - JP Soars & the Red Hots plus opener Stan Street at Shack Up Inn on (cover).
- Sun 9/5 at 2pm - Black Water Trio in Hopson Courtyard on (no cover, free BBQ).
Details subject to change, so please see

Have you shopped your friendly, neighborhood CAT HEAD blues store lately? In-person or online...
We are super stocked up in anticipation of our summer/fall festival season (that should still happen, at least in part). That means we have more tee choices than ever... plus great new books... more local artwork... and plenty of fresh vinyl and CDs to choose from.
Visit CAT HEAD in-person daily at 11am. Or shop our expanded WEB STORE now at
A few highlights in our WEB STORE:
- Various new and classic "Crossroads" inspired shirts.
- New Clarksdale-based "I Died and Went to Mississippi" novel (with plenty of real people, places and things inside!). Also, check out other books like "The Blues: A Visual History" and Bobby Rush's autobiography. Plus, pre-order your 2022 blues calendar w/CD (limited quantities coming soon).
- Fantastic new Kingfish and Cedric Burnside CDs. (Cedric's vinyl is available now; Kingfish's is available for pre-order.)
- New "Memphis '69" long-lost festival DVD; very cool.
- New imported marbled color vinyl blues records (limited quantity).
- Restocked blues posters and prints, plus brand-new W. Earl Robinson and Chris Kruse paintings.
- And more!

King Biscuit Blues Fest in nearby Helena, AR, Postponed to 2022 due to COVID-19 Concerns
The King Biscuit Blues Festival Postponed to October 2022 due to COVID-19 Concerns
Officials for the King Biscuit Blues Festival, scheduled for October 2021, have announced the postponement of their fall event. The rising number of Covid-19 cases in the Helena/West Helena and Phillips County area recently compelled the Sonny Boy Blues Society Board of Directors to reschedule the festival for October 5-8, 2022.
The organizers of the acclaimed musical celebration have conferred with local health officials and hospitals in the Helena/West Helena area, and all are very concerned with the continued acceleration of Covid-19 cases and deaths. Extremely limited availability of hospital beds also factors into the reluctant decision to change the date for the event. “We take the health and safety of our artists, fans, volunteers, sponsors and the public as our top priority,” said Festival CEO Munnie Jordan. “Postponement will allow the King Biscuit Blues Festival to be safely presented in a way that our fans expect.”
Further details will be made available as planners work toward the best King Biscuit Blues Festival at a time when all will be able to safely gather and celebrate our musical heritage.
All ticket sales and sponsorships will automatically be rolled over to the 2022 festival, unless otherwise specified. Please email with any questions.
We are eager for the day when it is safe to return and gather for OUR FAVORITE music and sub-events. We miss the traditional and up-and-coming performances from Blues artists, the BBQ & Blues on the Levee contest, Flour Power 5K Run, Tour da Delta Bike Ride and so much more.
Thank you for your support through this difficult time. We miss you and still believe our community and festival will return stronger than ever. When we have a green light from officials, we will provide additional updates.
Stay healthy, and we hope to see you soon.
King Biscuit Blues Festival
(PS - Plan now for next year, y'all...

Pinetop Perkins Memorial Homecoming at Hopson and Shack Up Inn also postponed till 2022...
"Regretfully, due to the continued Covid conditions in Mississippi and the surrounding area, as well as the recent decision to postpone the King Biscuit Blues Festival, the PPF Board of Directors has decided to postpone this year's Pinetop Homecoming. We will look forward to seeing all of you at our next Pinetop Homecoming event on October 9, 2022 with a line-up of incredible performers of all ages."
(By the way, here's a good way to support the blues via Pinetop.  Make a donation!

Helena, Arkansas' godfather of King Biscuit blues, Bubba Sullivan passes  away... RIP
Bubba Sullivan, King Biscuit Godfather, Passes
​by ​Don Wilcock (8/9/21)

The road goes on forever and the music never dies. Remembering Bubba Sullivan: the mover, the shaker, and the blues star maker.

Bubba Sullivan has passed. I can’t wrap my head around it. It’s like being told the sun won’t shine anymore.

Bubba was one of the founders of the King Biscuit Blues Festival. There was the Mississippi River, the hundreds of acts that grace the stage in Helena, Arkansas. And Bubba! He introduced all the acts on the main stage, sat at the back of stage throughout and held court absorbing the best blues in the south decade after decade, year after year, day after day, hour after hour.

I nicknamed Bubba the Godfather of the Biscuit. It was tongue in cheek in that he was about as much like a Mafia mobster as the grandfather I never knew. It’s as hard to imagine the Biscuit without him as it was to imagine King Biscuit Time Radio Show after Sunshine Sonny Payne passed.​..
Have you checked out lately? Do you have the app yet? Whatcha waitin' for?
Please check out, and download the new app. Have questions? Mask up, and visit tourism director Bubba O'Keefe and his team Mon-Fri from 9am-5pm at 326 Blues Alley, and pick up the latest paper maps and info. You can also call 662-627-6149, or email via the website. Then, visit Clarksdale when you #VisitMSresponsibly for one of the many festivals that Visit Clarksdale Tourism helps to sponsor. Thanks, y'all.

ALSO... Be sure to check out Ted Reed's fabulous Blues Trail Revisited Podcast series that Visit Clarksdale Tourism supports. It's wherever you get your podcasts, or you can listen here:
AND... As always keep up with Clarksdale's live-streams (also supported by Visit Clarksdale) at

- American Blues Scene magazine covers the blues scene in Clarksdale, Mississippi. New article by Kevin Wierzbicki...
- Clarksdale's nonprofit Sunflower River Blues Association help Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival in early August ( Read about at
 - Donate to the nonprofit Coahoma Collective's annual "super bloom," returning soon to Clarksdale's MLK Park near Red's Lounge -
- Latest Blues Festival Guide newsletter at
- 8/31 was last day to submit to Blues Foundation's Blues Music Award (BMA) competition,
- Keep updated on West Point, Mississippi's Black Prairie Blues Museum via

- Carol Boss Art's "Expressions of the Blues" will be exhibiting at Delta Cultural Center in Helena, Arkansas, opening Thursday, October 7th, 2021 (regardless of festival) -
- 2021 Mississippi John Hurt Foundation online concert series details at

- Hurricane Ida destroyed New Orleans jazz landmark, '2nd home to the young Louis Armstrong' -
- Get vaxed, and keep rockin' out to 'live' music! Venues and events starting to require shots... a few examples... Oxford, MS, New Orleans, LA, Buddy Guy's in Chicago, IL, and some musicians as well, Deep Blues Fest in Clarksdale, MS,
- Congrats to BB King Museum, recipient of new Mississippi Arts Commission grant,
- Levitt Shell in Memphis, TN, to hold special Country Blues Festival event  on Thurs., 10/7,
- 100 Men Hall in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, postpones Booker Fest till December, Plus, news (needs) from the 100 Men Hall,
- Recent St. Louis blues article from Big City Blues magazine,
- "Generation Jams: The Enduring Legacy of Memphis’ Great Musical Families" - Memphis Flyer -
- No Depression magazine to include a Robert Johnson/Crossroads story;
- French-speaking blues fan? Check out the latest-greatest ABS Magazine at

- Clarksdale-based bluesman Lucious Spiller is known for his eclectic take on the genre. My fav offbeat Lucci cover is Nirvana's All Apologies ("I wish I was like you. Easily amused."). Speaking of "covers," here's a story on Nirvana's most (in)famous album cover,
- New long-lost 'live' Coltrane recording drops October 8th!!
- New Irreversible Entanglements (awesome, revolutionary free-jazz band) video... with double-LP on the way...
- Big Ears Festival to return to Knoxville, TN, for 2022 -
- Lee 'Scratch' Perry, the visionary 'soul' of reggae, dies at 85 -
- Plan your blues pilgrimage today at #VisitMSresponsibly via and And check out the CAT HEAD music calendar at

EVEN MORE FESTIVALS coming to Clarksdale, Mississippi (subject to change, of course)...

Depending on vaccination rates, the status of the Delta variant, etc., these Clarksdale, MS, festivals are still scheduled this year:
- 9/4, 2021 - 3rd Red's Old-Timers Blues Fest on Sat of Labor Day Weekend (downtown Clarksdale). FREE performances socially-distanced on the MLK Stage grand lawn near the Sunflower River.
- 9/3-5, 2021 - Mag Fest Weekend with Terry "Big T" Williams at Shack Up Inn on Fri 9/3 at 8pm (cover), JP Soars & the Red Hots plus opener Stan Street at Shack Up Inn on Sat 9/4 at 8pm (cover), AND Black Water Trio in Hopson Courtyard on Sun 9/5 at 2pm (no cover, free BBQ); details subject to change, so please see Facebook.
- 9/9-10 - Yazoo Yaupon & Delta Arts District present Huckin' Around — A celebration of the Mississippi River, its culture, ecology, and history; info
- 9/27-10/1, 2021 - Bad Apple Blues Guitar Workshop,
- 10/2, 2021 - Bad Apple Blues Festival,
- 10/1-2, 2021 - Mighty Roots Music Festival at Stovall Farm,
- 10/8-10, 2021 - Cat Head 19th Anniversary Celebration Part II w/music each day -
- 10/14-17, 2021 - Deep Blues Fest (official and related blues & roots music events),
- 10/14-16, 2021 - Mississippi Delta Tennessee Williams Festival,
- Halloween Week - Hambone Festival & Related Events,

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VISION FESTIVAL in New York — a non-profit celebration of free-jazz, dance, poetry and art.
Back in July prior to the surge of the Delta variant, I was able to take a quick vaxed and masked trip to NYC and Brooklyn for the annual (and always amazing) VISION FESTIVAL ( — an improvised music/free-jazz sporgasbord. Fewer acts, more outdoors, masks required to enter, etc., but still a fascinating and inspiring event. Glad they got to sneak it in before all heck broke lose with the virus.
Always great to see bassist William Parker, trumpeter Jaimie Branch, cellist Lester St. Louis, bassist Luke Stewart, hornman Oliver Lake, sax player James Brandon Lewis, etc. Also really enjoyed seeing players like David Murray, Joe McPhee, Reggie Workman, Ingrid Laubrock, Steve Braczkowski and John Zorn for the first time.
Vision Festival is put on by the nonprofit Arts For Art organization that defines so-called "Free Jazz" this way: A disciplined disregard  for traditional boundaries.
Read a festival review from Jazz Times magazine at

Stay well, y'all... and "see you" next month for our next CAT HEAD UPDATE newsletter...
CAT HEAD is open 7 days a week at 252 Delta Avenue in historic downtown Clarksdale, MS. Shop our WEB STORE 24/7 at, or visit Mon-Fri 11am-4pm, Sat till 5pm and Sun 11-3. Thanks so much, Roger

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Cat Head Delta Blues and Folk Art  |  252 Delta Avenue  |  Clarksdale, MS 38614  |

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