PASCAGOULA: MS Gulf Coast Blues Festival

Good times await at Gulf Coast Blues Fest
By GENE COLEMAN — Special to the Sun Herald

The 2013 22nd annual Mississippi Gulf Coast Blues Festival will be a daylong party under the pavilion at the Jackson County Fairgrounds on Saturday.

Performing at the festival will be a collection of bands that have blues roots but are more like the funk and soul bands of the 1970s and 1980s. Their styles are reminiscent of music ranging from early James Brown to the party sounds of Morris Day and The Time.

The Georgia-based band Klass Band Brotherhood, for example, calls their music Southern soul — music that tells a story and makes you move. “It’s just like moonshine in a mason jar,” their biography states.

Addie Brent, president of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Blues Commission, said most of the music is a little more rhythm and blues than Delta blues and all of it sets the mood for a good time.

“It’s all geared to everyone but a lot of the artists are geared to a younger crowd,” Brent said. “We’ve had this music around for a long time and now there are some young entertainers playing it.”

Opening the show at 12:30 p.m. will be the 4 Real Show & Band of Pascagoula. Another taste of local flavor will come from Peach Magnolia, a New Orleans blues band with three female performers. Other national acts performing will be Geno Wesley, Jeff Floyd, and Wendall B. Headliner O.B. Buchana will take the stage around 7 p.m. to close out the show.

The Fairgrounds have a covered pavilion that will make the show more enjoyable rain or shine.

Brent said the festival also has jewelry vendors and is well known for its tasty food.

“You name it — barbecue ribs, chicken on a stick, red beans and rice, pork chops — we got it. There are usually catfish and jambalaya, blooming onions and burgers, too,” he said.

The event is presented by the Mississippi Gulf Coast Blues Commission, a non-profit organization formed in 1991 to promote blues music through the festival and to use some of the proceeds to benefit local youth groups.

The Jackson County Fairgrounds is at 2902 Shortcut Rd., Pascagoula. Gates open at 11 a.m.

Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 the day of the show. Tickets are available at Byrd’s Music Store and the Magnolia Elks Lodge, both in Moss Point; Elaine’s The Place to Be and Taylor Harris Drug Store, both in Gulfport; and Vernon Gilbert Elks Lodge in Biloxi.

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