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Pine Bluff, Arkansas’s cultural history dribbles and oozes with the earthy sounds of Arkansas Delta music. It is one of richest places of musical creation and innovation anywhere serving as the birth home, residence, or place of distinction for jazz/blues/soul/gospel greats like Sippie Wallace, Big Bill Broonzy, J. Mayo Williams, George Thomas, Elmore James, Sam Cooke, Vernon Garrett, Charles Brown, Cedell Davis, Miles Davis, Clark Terry, Smokie Norful and others.


To celebrate this wonderful legacy, Explore Pine Bluff launched their first ever Pine Bluff Virtual Blues and Soul Summer Sets. Each 2nd and 4th Thursday and Friday in June, July and August, listeners were invited to kick back and enjoy an hour of the best in Blues and Southern Soul deejaying one night and an hour of live Blues and soul music from incredible Pine Bluff-affiliated artists the next night. While many of these Delta artists are scattered across the U.S., they’ve got the Pine Bluff area in their hearts and shared stories about growing up and their time in the Delta while performing.

You can still enjoy these sets by clicking on the videos below:

Bobby Rush

The Grammy-award winning blues legend moved to the Pine Bluff area around the age of 12 from Louisiana and performed his first paid gigs in the city. He met slide guitar legend, Elmore James, there, and played juke joints throughout the city and the county. At age 86, Rush has recorded over 400 songs, has been inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame and the Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame, has amassed 12 Blues Music Awards, and has been featured in numerous documentaries and movies. The city of Pine Bluff recently renamed a street in his honor. He and his wife currently live in Jackson, Mississippi.

Rod Clemmons

Rated by as one of the top 10 blind artists of all time, Clemmons is an R&B/neo-soul singer, pianist, producer, songwriter, and arranger whose music is an incredible journey into sound and sophistication. His music has appeared on adult contemporary charts in the U.S. and he has been nominated for a Grammy. Born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas to local luminaries, H.O. and Faye Clemmons, he has worked in diverse music fields such as contemporary Gospel, contemporary country, pop/rock, children's music, classical, as well as R&B. He currently lives in Dover, Delaware.

Rachel “Brick” Fields

Born in Pine Bluff and often called “Brick”, she and her husband, Larry, form the multi-award winning group, Brick Fields. Known for their soulful blues, blues rock, folk and gospel sounds, Sheryl and Dan Crow, members of the Nashville Blues Society have described Fields as the “First Lady of Gospel Blues.” With more than 250 shows per year, they spread the Blues with an almost spiritual fervor. They currently live in Northwest Arkansas.

James "Taildragger" Jones

A product of Altheimer, Arkansas, just across the river from Pine Bluff, Jones grew up sneaking into Delta juke joints like The Jack Rabbit Club in Pine Bluff and watching Blues legends perform like Sonny Boy Williamson, Robert Nighthawk, Howlin’ Wolf, and many others. In fact, when Jones became a Blues artist in the 1960s, he was named “Taildragger” by Howlin’ Wolf because of his lateness for shows. Jones has performed all over the world and has had Grammy consideration for several of his albums.  He has also appeared in several movies and documentary films. A documentary about his life is due out in December of 2020. He currently lives in Chicago, Illinois.

Joe Pitts

Deemed one of the most soulful blues-rock artists of the 2000s, Pitts is a proud product of Pine Bluff who has traveled all over the world performing. He was nominated for his vocal abilities as one of the best vocalists of the year at the 2006 Indie Artist Radio Awards. His music has charted in the Top 10 albums and Top 5 singles on the Indie charts in Europe. Pitts has shared the stage with greats like Larry Davis, Michael Burks, Greg Allman, Eric Gales, and many others. Blending blues, jazz, and roots music, Pitts has developed a style that is unique while always honoring his Delta roots. He and his wife currently live in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
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Karen Wolfe

Known as the “Princess of Soul and Blues,” Wolfe got her start in commercial music singing backup with blues legend, Denise LaSalle. Noticing her awesome vocal talent and stage presence, LaSalle encouraged her to start a solo career. Wolfe took her advice and the rest is history. She is one of the most well known Soul Blues artists performing all over the country. Just a month ago one of her recent releases, “Grown Folks Step” was on the Billboard Charts. Wolfe's lady’s anthem “Man Enough” was awarded the title "Southern Soul Blues Song of the Year" by the Blues Critic Awards. She's come a long way from her Delta roots in Pine Bluff growing up singing in the Indiana Street Baptist Church Choir. Wolfe and her husband currently live in Memphis, Tennessee.

Jimmy Logan

Altheimer-born Logan moved to Pine Bluff as a teenager and took an interest in deejaying family events. As his skills grew, the number of clients clamoring for his service increased since he established a reputation for “rocking the house.” Logan has been deejaying over 15 years and has engaged events throughout the South and the Midwest. Whether family reunions, wedding receptions, corporate events, or local dances, he has played all kinds of musical genres for all kinds of people. Logan loves the Delta where both he and his wife are from, and they currently live in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.
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