The Blues

It’s a fact that every Mississippian will proudly tell you: Our state spawned the genre that is the taproot of modern popular music. Whether you’re a die-hard blues fan or a casual traveler in search of entertainment, you’ll discover facts you never knew, sights you’ve never seen and a whole new appreciation for the area that gave birth to the blues.

So where do you start?

Throughout the state, the markers on the Mississippi Blues Trail tell the stories of blues artists both renowned and obscure through words and images. From sprawling cotton fields and rustic train depots to cemeteries, clubs and churches, you’ll see firsthand how the people, places and culture around them influenced and shaped their music.

It’s true — blues in Mississippi is not just in the Delta. The Mississippi Delta is known around the world as the birthplace of the blues and remains home to historic stages, modern venues and major landmarks. For example, the infamous “Crossroads” is where blues legend Robert Johnson is said to have sold his soul to the devil in exchange for musical ability to put mere mortals to shame. But the blues can be heard and seen all over the state.

To catch a performance, look up local music listings in the town or region you plan to visit. From Bentonia to Clarksdale, Jackson to Tupelo, Hattiesburg to Natchez, along the Gulf Coast and anywhere in between, musicians pour their heart out on the stage night after night.

Of course, you don’t have to set foot in a juke joint or blues club to find authentic blues music in Mississippi. Thanks to the numerous blues and music festivals that draw thousands of fans to our state every year, blues is as easy to find in Mississippi as hospitality itself. Check out our annual calendar of entertainment and events in all parts of the state.

In between performances, music fans can still find plenty of applause-worthy attractions (and escape the summer heat into some much-needed air conditioning). It’s amazing what can be learned about Mississippi-born blues musicians like B.B. King and the genre as a whole by visiting Mississippi’s many museums, homes and cultural attractions dedicated to giving casual visitors and enthusiasts alike an inside look at the roots of the blues — and the rise of America’s music.

B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center

Indianola , MS  FEATURED

Located in the heart of the Delta in Indianola, the B.B. King and Delta Interpretive Center, through exhibits, tells the story of King’s life and music. “The mission of the B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit […]

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Gateway to the Blues Museum & Visitors Center


The Gateway to the Blues Museum and Visitors Center on Highway 61 is the first place many people see when they roll into Tunica. This rustic train depot, circa 1895, is a must-stop for travelers before and after a visit to […]

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Hollywood Cafe

Tunica, MS

Beale Street and Elvis aren’t the only stars in Marc Cohn’s “Walking in Memphis”—Tunica’s own Hollywood Café was also immortalized in the hit song for its soulful live music. But this local eatery’s real claim to fame is the food. […]

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Joe Callicott Mississippi Blues Trail Marker and Gravesite

Nesbit, MS

Born in October 1899, Joe Callicott was a Nesbit native who spent his whole life in the area south of Memphis and is regarded as one of Mississippi’s finest early bluesmen. His chief musical associate was Garfield Akers and it […]

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Mississippi Blues Trail – MS Gulf Coast Blues & Heritage Festival

Pascagoula , MS

The Mississippi Gulf Coast Blues & Heritage Festival is part of the Mississippi Blues Trail. Since 1991 this festival has featured southern soul, blues, zydeco and gospel acts. Mississippi blues and soul headliners have included Bobby Rush, Theodis Ealey, O.B. Buchana […]

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Landers Center

Southaven, MS

Landers Center is a multi-facet facility capable of hosting a wide variety of events each year. The arena plays host to the Memphis Hustle, of the NBA’s G-League. Not only is basketball held in the arena, but other sporting events […]

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