you're in Clarksdale, MS and you look real close at the Northwest corner of
Avenue & MLK Drive, catty corner from the Grange Cemetery, you just might
RED's LOUNGE. It doesn't look like it's open and Big Red only opens
when he feels
like it. There's no schedule
that I'm aware of and Red will be around when he wants
to have a little fun and
let his hair down some. Not that Red has a lot of hair these days,
does have a "Joint". You just have to drive
by and see if Red is open.
Clarksdale's not jumping like the "old" days
Smitty's Red Top, the Blue Diamond, the
Big House, Gene's Snack Bar,
Mac's, the Black Forest, and several other
joints open, but Red still carries on. Red was recognized in 2006 with the
Early Wright Award
for keeping the Blues alive. Red's joint represents one
of the last old school jukes in Clarksdale.
If you're fortunate enough to find Red's open, you'll probably
run into several local
musicians sitting in
with the house band. On this typical Friday night, I ran into Gladys
from Shelby, Dr Mike James, Big T, Joe Iceman Williams,
Blackjack, Wesley Jefferson,
Jeremy Horton, Willie Butler, Artie Renkel from PA, Frankie Lee, and Josh
These guys have been playing together for many years and it's a
real treat to just hang
out at this Big Ole House party at Red's.
Everyone participates freely. You can sing along if you want,
shoot some pool, dance
by yourself or with someone, or just drink
beer. No one pays you no nevermind,
it's just another night of blues in
the land where the blues began.
Here's some photo's taken at Red's from 2002 through 2015.
Red's was the home for Big Jack Johnson until Big Jack's death on
March 14, 2011.
Back to "Joints-Red's"
page added April 30, 2004
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