This past April 29th through May 1st, Memphis' Tom Lee Park on the great Mississippi river bank was home to the city's annual The Beale Street Music Festival (BSMF).
Five stages are home to both the most amazing blues artists as well as a variety of great national and international musical acts. This first weekend in May represents not only a month-long of civic celebrations but also one of a few great musicial events in the area. Just prior and only a mere hour and a half away in Clarkedale, MS, The Juke Joint blues festival draws blues fans across the country. Then a fews days later after The BSMF, the Blues Music Awards hosted at Memphis' Blues Hall of Fame inducts musicains, hosts blues shows and events. It would be easy to make a three week musical pilgramage to this area schedules permitting.
With rain a looming threat, the weather largely cooperated. But what really shined through was great music hosted with the friendly and hosipatable charm that Memphis has to offer. This year's line up included Neil Young and Promise of the Real, Mavis Staples, Trampled by Turtles, The Struts, Walter Trout, Grace Patter, Modest Mouse, Ana Popovic, Barenaked Ladies, Cypress Hill, Moon Taxi, Violent Femmes, Better Than Ezra, John Mayall, Beck, Courtney Barnett, Indigo Girls, Paul Simon, The Lone Bellows, The Joy Formidables and many more.
Memphis is one of America's great music cities.The quaint city and a crossroads of America, is home to Sun Records, Stax Records, St. Blues Guitar Workshop, Gibson Guitars, Beale Street and The Blues Hall of Fame. But checking out this festival can be the right excuse for a musical road trip to explore all these noteworthy jems.