Friday, June 24, 2011

One Of Those Days

I recently had one of those days that makes me thrilled to be involved in this great music. My last blog was on the Pinetop Perkins Foundation and all they do, and posting it prompted a call from PPF Board Member, Bob Margolin. He wanted to fill me in on the Masterclasses he’d just finished teaching. He was driving back to North Carolina from Clarksdale, so he had some time to chat.

The workshop kicked off last Tuesday night with a meet and greet between the students, their families, and the teachers. Bob was teaching the guitar, with Erwin Helfer filling in on piano for the recuperating Ann Rabson. Here’s the schedule:

Youth Workshop Series Schedule 
  • Tues., June 14    5:00 PM               Meet and Greet 
  • Wed., June 15    9:30 AM-4:00 PM  Masterclass Workshops 
  • Thurs., June 16   9:30 AM-4:00 PM  Masterclass Workshops 
  • Fri., June 17        9:30 Am - Noon    Masterclass Workshops 
  • Fri., June 17        8 pm - 1:00 a.m.   Performance Jam - Ground Zero Blues Club 

    That’s a full few days! This was the second year of the program, and by Bob’s account, a tremendous success. There were fourteen kids attending, ten on guitar, and four on piano. The event took place at the Shack Up Inn and Hopson’s Commissary.

    A little history: anyone with any Blues knowledge whatsoever knows about Hopson’s Plantation and the many Blues legends who, at one time or another, picked cotton there. I was less certain about the Commissary, so I decided to do a little research. That was a few hours ago. I got steeped and lost in history. Here are a couple of wonderful excerpts regarding both the present use and historical use of the Commissary starting with a couple of paragraphs from Gary W. Miller © 2001, Gary W. Miller,, (Appeared in Nov, 7 2001 issue of