Sunday, June 7, 2009

'Last of the Mississippi Jukes'

I like doing press releases. It's a challenge to get as much information out there, in as little space as possible. This was my very first paid release. It's here for sentimental reasons.

On April 5th, Last of the Mississippi Jukes, a new film by Starz Encore Entertainment, had its home-state premiere at Jackson’s Crossroads Film Festival. This brilliant documentary, directed by Robert Mugge and produced by David Hughes, takes a loving look at the legendary Subway Lounge, one of the few remaining “juke joints” in the state that birthed the blues.

The movie was punctuated by frequent applause for the performances, and a standing ovation for twenty-five of the performers themselves when they were introduced afterward by producer Hughes. The King Edward Blues Band, the House Rockers, and Chris Thomas King (O Brother Where Art Thou?) were joined onstage by Subway Lounge owner Jimmy King, and by Bill Luckett and actor Morgan Freeman, owners of Clarksdale’s Ground Zero blues club, also featured in the film.

The celebration continued at a fundraising concert for the crumbling Subway Lounge. The event, hosted by local club Hal and Mal’s, was also the scene of Sanctuary Records’ Last of the Mississippi Jukes CD and DVD release party, and was also attended by Morgan Freeman. There the performers from the movie jammed for several hours to a crowd of nearly one thousand, many of whom made donations on the spot to the Save the Subway Fund.

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