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7th Annual Oxford Blues Festival Cancels After Thunderstorm

The seventh annual Oxford Blues Festival cancelled shortly after the first stage performance on Saturday afternoon, July 16.

Wind and showers had fans running for tents and covering their heads with folding chairs. Because of the heavy downpour, the sound equipment on the Grove’s stage was far too wet to continue the festival.

The Zediker Brothers Performance at The Oxford Blues Festival:

Before the storm, The Zediker Brothers were able to complete a whole set. The Zediker Brothers are a guitar/drum duo from Water Valley, Mississippi, making their second appearance at the Oxford Blues Fest. Matthew, guitar (age 18) and Charlie, drums (age 14) had their solo performance debut at last year’s Oxford Blues Fest (then as “The Zediker Boys”), and there’s been a buzz about this band ever since. They’ve been performing at numerous venues around North Mississippi and also recording at Bruce Watson’s Dial Back Sound studio. They released their first 5-song EP this past February.

Performances by The Mississippi Traveling Stars, Jontavious Willis, Doc Prana, The Blues Doctors, Leo “Bud” Welch, Tullie Brae and The Mosley & Johnson Band were all cancelled.

From left to right: Leo "Bud" Welch, Tullie Brae and Jontavious Willis.
From left to right: Leo “Bud” Welch, Tullie Brae and Jontavious Willis.

At noon, a Blues Panel Discussion took place in The Overby Center. Leo “Bud” Welch and his manager, Vencie Varnado, Tullie Brae and Jontavious Willis all spoke during the panel hosted by DeWayne Moore, executive director of Mt. Zion Memorial Fund, Inc. The Blues musicians discussed how they first learned to play musical instruments, best and worst venues to perform and what they believe Blues culture’s role is in today’s society.

IMG_1681Kern Pratt & The Accused featuring Denise Owen performed at The Shelter on Van Buren Friday night as the opening show for the Oxford Blues Fest. For a video of the performance and more information, click here.

The festival kicked off Friday, July 15, with a Double Decker bus ride to the Ole Miss Blues Archive, where Director Greg Johnson showcased one of the largest collections of blues recordings, publications and memorabilia in the world. Guests then rode the Double Decker bus to Mama Jo’s Country Cookin for the “Food of the Blues.”


Randall Haley is the social media editor and a staff writer for HottyToddy.com. She can be reached at randall.haley@hottytoddy.com.

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