So many people have stayed or visited here from Muddy t Ike Turner (Rocket 88, was penned here), Sam Cooke, The Blind Boys Of Alabama and is the hospital (which it was originally) where Bessie Smith passed after her car accident.
We were given a tour by Z, the granddaughter of the woman who purchased the propert in the 40's...she is third generation owner of the establishment - her father Ratt, who passed last year.
As her father did for years, Z gave us a tour of the rooms and explained who stayed in which room.. so very cool.
Then we went outside to take pictures and she mentioned meeting this "nice young man from Oxford" during the last Juke Joint festival and pulled a picture off the table in front and it was JEFF JENSEN, my most excellent friend. I mentioned he was from Memphis, but had been there with Mick Kolassa who was from Oxford and Z smiled and said, "Yes, Mick, love that man"
That night the band played at the Bluesberry Cafe in Clarksdale, which is owned by Carol & Arthur Crivaro and run with the assistance of their wonderful daughter Amanda.
We were treated to their homemade spaghetti and meatballs and eggplant parmigiana. It was a small but enthusiastic crowd and toward the end of the evening, the legendary Watermelon Slim joined the boys and did his thing..and if you know Slim, only he can do his thing!
If you are a friend of Dick Earl's, ask him "What's In That Bowling Ball Bag!"
Z and the boys...Sonny was lying down as he
hurt his back earlier in the day
The room Bessie Smith died in.
They don't rent this one out any longer
The entryway into the hotel
Past that door was added after it became
a hotel. So many famous people walked these halls..
and you can feel their spirits - in a good way!
Even John F Kennedy Jr stayed here for a few days
and most did not know who he was!
He is in the picture with the original Z,
who bought the place in the 40's
In memory of Rat
Bluesberry Cafe...Go to Clarksdale
Visit the Bluesberry Cafe, tell Arthur, Carol & Amanda
I sent you and eat some of their delicious food...
Carol, we are going to have that eggplant parm cook-off soon!
The band with Watermelon Slim!
A video of Tas, Joe, Sonny & Watermelon Slim making some coolness!