When: May 22-23, 2010
Where: Foxfire Ranch, 50 miles south of Memphis in rural Waterford, Mississippi http://www.hillcountryharmonica.com/photos.html
What: a two-day intensive retreat for blues harmonica students (all levels) and their friends, featuring workshops, jam sessions, and concerts with some of the finest traditional and contemporary players in the world. FREE onsite camping! Plenty of home-cooked soul food available.
Who: Billy Branch, Adam Gussow (with special guest Charlie Hilbert), Terry “Harmonica” Bean, Bill “Howl-N-Madd” Perry, Brandon Bailey, and very special guest Billy Gibson http://www.hillcountryharmonica.com/performers.html
Hours: 11 AM – 12 midnight Saturday; 10 AM – 12 midnight Sunday
Cost: $150. $50 for a non-playing spouse, partner, or friend. Kids 12 and under free!
Housing: In addition to free on-site camping, cabins and campsites with full hookups are available at Wall Doxey State Park (4 miles away). Motel rooms are available in Holly Springs (10 miles away) and Oxford (20 miles away). http://www.hillcountryharmonica.com/motels.html
Extras: Horse rides available from Foxfire owner Bill Hollowell (30 min. for only $8)……Free bottomless coffee and OJ on Sunday morning……Cold beer for sale all day Saturday/Sunday…..No charge to bring your own coolers!…NYC swing/harp sensation Ron Sunshine will be in residence with a full selection of deluxe vintage harp mics….A “harp amp throwdown” for gear-heads in which we play our way through a series of vintage tube amps while you judge for tone….and more.
**Special Added Event: On Friday May 21, Hill Country Harmonica is taking over Rooster’s Blues House on the Square in Oxford and hosting the “Hill Country Harmonica Jam.” North Mississippi blues guitarist Jay Lang is putting together a band of local players to help us kick things off in high style. Bring your harps!
A Statement of Purpose: The blues aren’t dead, and they’re not dying. They don’t need to be “kept alive.” Theyare alive, and flourishing. They live in local communities–such as the one that recreates itself every Sunday summer evening in the blues barn at Foxfire Ranch–and they live in countless virtual communities on the World Wide Web. They live on YouTube. They live in Mississippi. They live in the Chicago clubs. They live on ModernBluesHarmonica.com and Harp-L and a dozen other forums. They live on Beale Street. They live in the passion of the musician/teachers we’ve assembled here, and they live in your passion, our collective passion, for the harmonica.
Hill Country Harmonica is an attempt to bridge those worlds and create a face-to-face community of harmonica players for a couple of days in the hills of North Mississippi. If you’ve been inspired at a distance by the playing and teaching of the blues performers on our roster, or if you think you’ve seen everything and want to be inspired all over again, we urge you to think about joining us for a remarkable weekend of learning, grooving, playing, risking, growing, and bluesing it up.
A Dedication: This year’s Hill Country Harmonica is dedicated to Sterling “Mr. Satan” Magee. We had originally conceived of the event as a showcase for his talents as a member of the blues trio Satan and Adam. Unfortunately, his physical condition has deteriorated. We recently received word from the Medicare facility where he resides in Gulfport, Fla. that he is no longer allowed to make overnight or out-of-town trips. His career as a touring blues performer, which spans more than fifty years, is now over. He still performs every Tuesday night at the Peninsula Inn and Spa in Gulfport, however, and Adam will continue to join him there for occasional gigs.