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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Pinetop Perkins Homecoming at the Hopson Commissary and the Shack Up Inn's Juke Joint Chapel on October 12

On Sunday October 12--the day after the King Biscuit Blues Festival in Helena ends--the Pinetop Perkins Foundation is presenting the 14th annual Pinetop Perkins Homecoming Celebration on the Hopson Plantation just outside of Clarksdale, which features two venues: Hopson Commissary and the Shack Up Inn's Juke Joint Chapel, as well as other performances on the grounds.  Music is scheduled from 3 - 7:30 p.m. and there's a suggested donation of $15.

All proceeds go to scholarships for the Foundation's Pinetop Perkins Master Class Workshops, where are held at Hopson in June.  If you are unable to attend the Homecoming, you can still donate online via the Foundation's website.

Perkins (1913-2011), whose long career included stints with Robert Nighthawk, Earl Hooker and, most famously, Muddy Waters, participated the Homecoming for many years; the event began with the dedication of a Pinetop Perkins shack in 2001. Perkins lived on the plantation in the 1940s, working as a tractor driver, and during his time in the Clarksdale area served as a mentor to young pianist Ike Turner.

A Mississippi Blues Trail in front of the plantation titled "Cotton Pickin' Blues" addresses the farm's role in the mechanization of cotton production during the time Perkins lived here.

The festival takes place just after the King Biscuit Blues Festival, so there's many artists already in the area. Featured artists at this year's event include Bob Margolin, who was Muddy Waters' band with Perkins, Super Chikan and the Fighting Cocks, Bob Stroger; Jonn Del Toro Richardson, Sweet Betty, Tom Holland, Jimmi Mayes, Clay Swafford, Lee Williams and Heather Crosse.

On the Juke Joint Stage are Kenny Brown, the Cedric Burnside Project, and Lightnin' Malcolm, and the Acoustic Jam Stage has Stephen "Blues Dude" Duncan; and "Rip Lee" Pryor. There will also be a special youth showcase with Kingfish Ingram, Marcus Cartwright. Wyly Bigger and Carson Diersing.