Here are some great individuals, companies and organizations that promote the blues in various ways. Please visit their Web sites or visit them at their place of business and help further support the blues in your community and online.
Visit Charlie at Bluebeat Music for all your blues CDs, videos, books and more. Charlie is a vast resource of blues and soul knowledge and if he doesn't carry what you're looking for, probably nobody else has it.
I met Jim while visiting Charlie at a blues festival in Southern California. Jim creates some great blues and rock art and I knew right away I had to have his Hound Dog Taylor.
Clarksdale, Miss., is home of the Delta Blues, and nobody covers more of its artistic culture than Roger and Jennifer Stolle at Cat Head in downtown Clarksdale. Their Web site not only promotes local artists and history, but has a great links section that gives you a run down of the many blues festivals down South and across the U.S.
After you visit Cat Head, make sure you make the pilgrimage to the Delta Blues Museum, which houses Muddy Waters' childhood home and instructions on how to call up Old Scratch to make a deal. It's a great place to learn about the roots of this most American of music.
OK, I don't promote too many lodgings, but if you make it to Clarksdale, try getting yourself into the Shack Up Inn. Spend a couple of nights in a funky-decorated old sharecropper shack or in one of their new rooms in the Cotton Gin Inn. Far out!
Willie Dixon left a blues legacy like no other. His music has been recorded by artists in numerous genres from all over the world. His family now runs this foundation in his name to document and promote the blues, as well as "support blues artists and the business of music." Come out to the Chicago Blues Festival and visit Marie Dixon, Willie's widow, at the Blues Heaven tent.