JACKSON, MS (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — The State of Mississippi's continuing "Birthplace of America's Music" campaign gets a big boost this month with the third annual "Mississippi The Birthplace of America's Music Celebrates Its Grammy Legacy" gala. This year the event moves from Jackson, the state capital, to Tunica, situated in the storied Mississippi Delta and just 30 miles south of Memphis. The evening, starring a host of music greats, underscores the fact that Mississippi has been one of the most fertile breeding grounds for music of all kinds with a rich history of producing numerous Grammy winners and nominees. The program will take place on Thursday, May 28th at Bluesville, part of Harrah's Horseshoe Casino and Hotel complex. Proceeds from the evening will benefit the Mississippi Blues Commission's Blues Trail project that places interpretive markers at notable historical sites related to the history and growth of the blues throughout the state.
Hosted by Governor Haley Barbour and First Lady Marsha Barbour and sponsored by Mississippi's own musical innovators Peavey Electronics Corporation, the gala will feature performances by an array of talent reflecting the diversity of the state's contribution to numerous genres of music. Headliners include country superstar Marty Stuart, the legendary Charley Pride, R&B icon Dorothy Moore and mythic blues man Pinetop Perkins. Joining them will be soul-gospel greats The Williams Brothers, contemporary blues showman Eddie Cotton, Nanette Workman, one of French Canada's most celebrated vocalists, blues and jazz pianist Eden Brent and Brandon Bennett paying tribute to Tupelo's Elvis Presley. James Burton, the former Elvis Presley sideman who has become a star attraction in his own right will also perform. Sharing emcee duties are noted film actress Joey Lauren Adams and award winning singer/songwriter Paul Overstreet who will also be one of the evening's musical performers.
In announcing the event, Governor Barbour noted, "Our two previous Grammy celebrations were wonderful events that gave us the opportunity to reflect on just how significant the contribution of Mississippi artists has been over the years. We're excited to be moving the festivities up to Tunica with a slate of performers whose talent and career successes prove what we've been saying all along: 'If it's music, it's Mississippi.'"
Jon Hornyak, Senior Executive Director of The Recording AcademyMemphis Chapter commented, "The Recording Academy is extremely honored and supportive of Mississippi's annual celebration of Grammy winners and nominees. The state has been the source of almost fifty Grammy Award winners and today continues to nurture amazing musical souls. The state's influence is simply undeniable."
Sponsored by Peavey Electronics and the Mississippi Development Authority, the event will be preceded by a reception hosted by the Governor and First Lady where the participating performing artists will receive the Peavey Award. Named for renowned music and audio innovator and Mississippi native Hartley D. Peavey, the Peavey Award honors the state's many Grammy winners and nominees as well as individuals who have played a significant role in developing and furthering Mississippi's musical heritage. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers