Friday, December 16, 2011

We Juke Up In Here!

I've been battling some computer issues for the past few days......hard drive problems on one computer and a virus on the other.......Hopefully, we will return to your regularly scheduled programming next week.  In the meantime, what's new with the blues?

First up, an exciting new film is in the works.  Here's a press release from our friends Jeff Konkel and Roger Stolle......


For more information, contact:  Roger Stolle at or Jeff Konkel at

(CLARKSDALE, MS) In 2008, music producers Jeff Konkel and Roger Stolle took viewers on a road trip through the birthplace of the blues in the award-winning film M For Mississippi. Now the duo is set to return with a new film exploring what remains of the once-thriving tradition of juke joints in the Mississippi Delta. Filming concluded last week for We Juke Up In Here: Mississippi’s Juke Joint Culture at the Crossroads. The DVD/CD set will be released in April 2012 but is available now for pre-order at

“Great blues music can be enjoyed anywhere, whether it’s at a big outdoor festival or an upscale supper club. But we believe the best place to hear it is in a dimly lit juke filled with tough characters, treacherous women and lukewarm beer,” Konkel said. “This film aims to prove our point.”

Production for We Juke Up In Here began in May and continued through the summer and fall. The project reunites Stolle and Konkel with their M For Mississippi cinematographer and co-producer Damien Blaylock. Also returning from the previous production was sound engineer Bill Abel. The team was rounded out by talented videographer and photographer Lou Bopp.

Red Paden (Photo by Lou Bopp)

Although the movie’s production included film shoots in venues throughout the Delta, the film largely focuses on Red’s Lounge, a long-running juke in Clarksdale, Mississippi, and its owner Red Paden. Over the past decade, Red’s Lounge has emerged as the most active juke joint in the region, hosting live blues every weekend by some of the state’s best-loved bluesmen.

“There are plenty of so-called ‘juke joints’ in Mississippi that book live music during festival weekends when thousands of tourists flood the region,” Stolle said. “But the test of a real juke is what happens when the crowds go home. Red books real-deal blues into his juke week-in and week-out, all year round. He’s like the last of the Mohicans.”
Filming at the Blue Front Cafe (Photo by Lou Bopp)

Other venues to be featured in the film include Po’ Monkey’s Lounge in Merigold, Mississippi and the Blue Front Cafe in Bentonia, Mississippi.

In addition to insightful interviews with juke owners, patrons and musicians, “We Juke Up In Here” will feature gritty performances by Anthony “Big A” Sherrod, Louis “Gearshifter” Youngblood, Elmo Williams & Hezekiah Early, Robert Lee “Lil’ Poochie” Watson, Big George Brock, Jimmy “Duck” Holmes and Terry “Harmonica” Bean. 

Filming at Po' Monkey's Lounge (Photo by Lou Bopp)
We Juke Up In Here will be released as a deluxe box set featuring a DVD, a CD soundtrack and a glossy pullout booklet with multiple essays, notes and color photos. The DVD will include the feature-length documentary along with a treasure trove of bonus features including unreleased scenes, production stills, a promotional trailer, closed captioning, foreign-language subtitles and more. The DVD will be region-free and playable on DVD players worldwide. The box set will retail for $29.99 (US).

Customers who pre-order We Juke Up In Here from will receive the product before its official release and at a discounted price of $25 (US) plus free shipping worldwide.

Several marketing sponsors have stepped forward with financial support to assist in the production of the movie. The filmmakers’ principal sponsor and partner is the Rootsway Roots & Blues Association (, a nonprofit organization from Parma, Italy. Founded in 2004, the group is dedicated to promoting rural and indigenous American and African-American musical art forms throughout northern Italy. Rootsway has brought several Mississippi blues performers to Italy in recent years.

Additional sponsors include: AJStephans Company/Jeff Rose (, Cathead Vodka (, Jerry and Marge Konkel, Lemuria Books (, Nayati Dreams (, The New Roxy (, Roadhouse Lou, and Smokestack Blues (

Additional sponsorship opportunities remain for We Juke Up In Here. To inquire about sponsorships, e-mail the filmmakers at

We Juke Up In Here is a joint production of Cat Head Delta Blues & Folk Art ( and Broke & Hungry Records (

Friday Blues Fix will be taking a closer look at We Juke Up In Here in the coming months.

This week, the nominees for the 33rd Annual Blues Music Awards (formerly the Handy Awards) were announced.  Check out the list and see if your favorites made the cut.  I've heard several of the nominees in the Album categories, but not enough of them to make a really clear-cut vote in any of those categories. 
Acoustic Album

Brand New Eyes - Doug MacLeod
Conversations in Blue - David Maxwell & Otis Spann
Misery Loves Company - Mary Flower
Shake 'Em on Down - Rory Block
Troubadour Live - Eric Bibb

Acoustic Artist

David Maxwell
Doug MacLeod
Eric Bibb
Guy Davis
Mary Flower
Rory Block

Album of the Year

Chicago Blues A Living History the (R)evolution Continues - Billy Boy Arnold, John Primer, Billy Branch, Lurrie Bell, Carlos Johnson
Evening - Sugar Ray & the Bluetones
Medicine - Tab Benoit
Revelator - Tedeschi Trucks Band
Rock and a Hard Place - Eugene Hideaway Bridges
The Lord is Waiting and the Devil is Too - Johnny Sansone

B.B. King Entertainer

Candye Kane
Lil' Ed
Ruthie Foster
Tab Benoit
Tommy Castro


The Bo-Keys
Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials
Sugar Ray & the Bluetones
Tedeschi Trucks Band
Tommy Castro Band
Trampled Under Foot

Best New Artist Debut

Bad Girl - Demetria Taylor
Choice Cuts - Big Pete
Leave The Light On - Sena Ehrhardt
Runaway - Samantha Fish
The Mighty Mojo Prophets - The Mighty Mojo Prophets

Contemporary Blues Album

Don't Explain - Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa
Medicine - Tab Benoit
The Lord is Waiting and the Devil is Too - Johnny Sansone
The Skinny - Ian Siegal & the Youngest Sons
Tommy Castro Presents The Legendary Rhythm & Blues Revue--Live! - Various Artists
Unconditional  - Ana Popovic

Contemporary Blues Female Artist

Ana Popovic
Bettye LaVette
Candye Kane
Janiva Magness
Susan Tedeschi

Contemporary Blues Male Artist

Joe Louis Walker
Johnny Sansone
JP Soars
Tab Benoit
Tommy Castro


Live At Antone's -Ruthie Foster (Blue Corn)
All Jams on Deck - Various Artists (Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise & Mug-Shot Productions)
An Evening at Trasimeno Lake - Ana Popovic (ArtisteXclusive)
Live at Montreux 2010 - Gary Moore (Eagle Rock)
Play the Blues - Wynton Marsalis & Eric Clapton (Rhino)
The Emporium to the Orpheum - Trampled Under Foot (Redwood)

Gibson Guitar Award

Derek Trucks
Duke Robillard
Kirk Fletcher
Lurrie Bell
Michael Burks

Historical Album

Bear Family - Texas Flyer 1974-76 (Freddie King)
Chess - Smokestack Lightning/The Complete Chess Masters 1951-1960 (Howlin' Wolf)
Delmark - Hoodoo Man Blues (Junior Wells Chicago Blues Band with Buddy Guy)
Electro-Fi - Teardrops Are Falling - Live in 1983 (George "Harmonica" Smith)
Virgin - The Essential Modern Records Collection (Etta James)


Biscuit Miller
Danielle Schnebelen
Larry Taylor
Michael "Mudcat" Ward
Patrick Rynn


Chris Layton
Jimi Bott
Kenny Smith
Robb Stupka
Stanton Moore
Tony Braunagel


Charlie Musselwhite
Kim Wilson
Lazy Lester
Rick Estrin
Sugar Ray Norcia


Al Basile
Doug James
Keith Crossan
Sax Gordon
Terry Hanck


Ben Prestage, diddley bow
Lionel Young, violin
Otis Taylor, banjo
Rich Del Grosso, mandolin
Sonny Rhodes, lap steel guitar

Koko Taylor Award (Traditional Blues Female)

Diunna Greenleaf
Maria Muldaur
Nora Jean
Ruthie Foster
Tracy Nelson

Pinetop Perkins Piano Player

David Maxwell
Eden Brent
Jon Cleary
Kenny "Blues Boss" Wayne
Marcia Ball
Victor Wainwright

Rock Blues Album

2120 South Michigan Ave. - George Thorogood & the Destroyers
Dust Bowl - Joe Bonamassa
Greyhound - Mike Zito
Man In Motion - Warren Haynes
Shiver - Too Slim and the Taildraggers


"Appreciate What You Got" - Terry Hanck (Look Out! - Terry Hanck)
"Back to the Blues" - Hadden Sayers (Hard Dollar - Hadden Sayers)
"Memphis Still Got Soul" - Bob Trenchard & Johnny Rawls (Memphis Still Got Soul - Johnny Rawls)
"Thank You for Giving Me the Blues" - Grady Champion, Zac Harmon & Chris Troy (Dreamin' - Grady Champion)
"The Lord is Waiting, the Devil is Too" - Johnny Sansone (The Lord is Waiting and the Devil is Too - Johnny Sansone)
"The Older I Get the Better I Was" - Joe Shelton (The Older I Get the Better I Was - Big Joe Shelton)

Soul Blues Album

Dreamin' - Grady Champion
Got to Get Back! - Bo-Keys
Memphis Still Got Soul - Johnny Rawls
Rock and a Hard Place - Eugene Hideaway Bridges
Show You A Good Time - Bobby Rush

Soul Blues Female Artist

Alexis P. Suter
Denise LaSalle
Jackie Johnson
Sharrie Williams
Sista Monica Parker

Soul Blues Male Artist

Bobby Rush
Curtis Salgado
Eugene Hideaway Bridges
Johnny Rawls
Otis Clay

Traditional Blues Album

Chicago Blues A Living History the (R)evolution Continues - Billy Boy Arnold, John Primer, Billy Branch, Lurrie Bell, Carlos Johnson
Evening - Sugar Ray & the Bluetones
Trying To Hold On - Diunna Greenleaf
Victim Of The Blues - Tracy Nelson
You Better Listen - Lazy Lester

Traditional Blues Male Artist

Charlie Musselwhite
John Primer
Lazy Lester
Mac Arnold
Magic Slim

No comments: