The Thacker Mountain Radio Hour, Oxford’s weekly music and literature program that has broadcast studio shows without an audience for the past pandemic year, will kick off its fall 2021 season Thursday, Sept. 9 at 6 pm with a live show – audience included.
The performance will be held at the Old Armory Pavilion on the corner of Bramlett Boulevard and University Avenue, where the weekly Oxford Farmer’s Market is held.
Health protocols will be in place including spaced seating and masks when needed. Lawn chairs and picnics are encouraged. Admission is free.
Guests for the first show will include author Heather Cass White and her book celebrating books: “Books Promiscuously Read: Reading as a Way of Life.”
Musical guests will include bluesman Mark “Muleman” Massey with Billy Earheart, former keyboardist for the Amazing Rhythm Aces, and world boogie group, Afrissippi.
The show is hosted by Jim Dees and the Yalobushwhacker Big Band featuring Mary Frances Massey.
Pending broadcast conditions, the show will air locally on WUMS, 92.1 FM and statewide and regionally the following week.
Thacker producer Kathryn McGaw York, back for her second tour as a producer of the show, says with the ever-changing Covid situation, the show will proceed accordingly.
“We know it’s important to make our shows a community event,” York notes. “We’re committed to perform our September shows at the Pavilion and at the Lyric so people can spread out. We’ll see how it goes. Everyone’s safety is foremost.”
Guests for upcoming shows this fall include Mississippi River historian/storyteller Macon Fry; acclaimed Chicago vocalist Kelly Hogan; B.B. King biographer, Daniel de Vise; Korean violinist Jiwon Lee and Mississippi songwriters Cary Hudson, Jimbo Mathus and Kaleb Garrett.
Thursday’s show features Afrissippi, a group with ties to the Oxford area, including guitarists Guelel Kumba and Eric Deaton and drummer, Kinny Kimbrough.
Kumba, is a singer-songwriter from the delta of Senegal, West Africa who moved to Oxford in 2002. In Oxford, he jammed with Deaton, who had played bass with north Mississippi blues legend, Junior Kimbrough. The two discovered the similarities between the hill country blues of North Mississippi and Kumba’s nomadic melodies from the Senegalese savannas.
Afrisippi’s drummer, Kinney Kimbrough, son of the late Junior Kimbrough, brings the group’s other-worldly grooves full circle.
“This will be a homecoming for Afrissippi and for all of us too, really,” host Dees says. “We look forward to seeing everybody – even if it’s from six feet.”
More information on the fall season at the show’s website: https://thackermountain.com/.