Monday, March 17, 2008

Stompin' USA

Still a month to go until the Stompin' USA 2008 music trip, but it seems that there's a growing anticipation among those going on the trip. I'm going with my girlfriend and will be dropping in and out of the main tour, but we're looking forward to getting to at least five music festivals and getting to a good few music clubs as well. We kick off in Memphis where I'm hoping to see one or more of the real blues clubs as well as the more touristy places around Beale Street. Then it's off to the Juke Joint Festival in Clarksdale, the home of the blues, for a rather more down home experience. We'll be staying in converted plantation accommodation so I'm not sure what to expect. Then it's a bit of meandering around Mississippi, Louisiana and/or Arkansas for a couple of days before getting to Shreveport. We hope to see the original Louisiana Hayride and meet a few local legends, including Margaret Lewis (pictured at the 100 Club recently), before moving on to Lafayette for a couple of days ahead of the Festival Louisiane. The Blind Boys of Alabama are a must see act there, but we'll soon be heading off for New Orleans for the first weekend of Jazzfest, with Irma Thomas and Al Green among others, and the Ponderosa Stomp, with an amaxing line up of obscure half forgotten fifties and sixties acts. After a week in the Big Easy it's back to Memphis for a couple of days, including one day at the Beale Street Festival.

It's a pretty action packed two and a half weeks and I'll report back in due course. It will be great to get some sun on my back, not to mention all the music, Cajun food and New Orleans atmosphere.


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