Johnnie Billington, a well respected blues artist and educator, died on April 1, 2013. When the Sunnyland Slim Blues Trail marker was unveiled in Lambert, Mississippi, in the summer of 2011, Billington was on hand to perform for the appreciative crowd. “Mr. Johnnie,” as he was called, was committed to passing on his knowledge of the blues to children, and for this passion he received the Blues Foundation’s “Keeping the Blues Alive” Education Award, and he also received the Governor’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts in 1999 for artist achievement. The Blues Trail marker, which also honors Billington as a Quitman County bluesman, stands a block away from the building that housed his music education school.
His full biography can be seen at www.arts.state.ms.us/folklife/artist.php?dirname=billington_johnnie.
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