Monday, August 31, 2009

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Weekend roundup

5 Things I am loving about this Velvet Ditch of ours this weekend:

1. Naked lady runs around the Water Valley Farmer's Market
2. The new Rock Star Taxi with themed vans and costumes (A-Team driven by a Mr. T look-alike)
3. Oxford Music Festival highlighted all the best this town has to offer.
4. A new corn dog stand in the smelliest alley in Oxford.
5. Not Oxford - but the Como Blues Trailer marker unveiling and the Otha Turner Fife and Drum Picnic. Take the Blues Trail and discover some great music history in our state.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Otha Turner picnic, marker unveiling this weekend

Otha Turner looks on with pride at his granddaughter Sharde Thomas. Photo by Bill Steber

The Otha Turner fife and drum picnic takes place tonight and tomorrow night, and tomorrow (Saturday) at 11am there'll be the dedication of a Mississippi Blues Trail marker in honor of Turner and the African American fife and drum tradition in downtown Como. For more information and directions to the picnic go here.


The 2009 Oxford Music Festival is being hosted by various Oxford Musicians and other local personalities, and is intended to showcase the wide range of musical talent that defines the Oxford music scene.

Many of Oxford's most talented bands are scheduled to play at two venues over the course of THURSDAY, FRIDAY and SATURDAY. These bands represent many different genres from outlaw country, punk/metal, hill country blues, rock and roll, to bluegrass.

These are the Oxford musicians that make our town so cool and unique! SUPPORT LOCAL MUSIC!!!


Admission: $30 package for all 3 nights!! @

Thursday (8:00-1:00)- Proud Larry's - $10

Friday (6:00-1:00)- The Lyric Theater- $15

Saturday (5:00-12:00)- The Lyric Theater- $15

There will be food and art vendors and band and festival merchandise will be sold as well, so bring some cash.

This years schedule:

Thursday – August 27, 2009 (Proud Larry’s)
8-8:20 Kelley Norris
8:20-8:40 Moon Pie Curtis
8:40-9 Brad Hayden
9-9:40 Hemptones
9:50-10:30 Live Donkey Show
10:40-11:30 Jay Lang & the Ringers
11:45-12:45 Zoogma

Friday - August 28, 2009 (The Lyric)

6-6:30 Stork & Nick B.
6:30-6:50 Young Buffalo
7-7:30 Shannon McNally
7:30-7:45 St. Andrew
7:45-8:15 Sleepwalkers
8:20-8:50 Avenue Hearts
8:55-9:35 The Cooters
9:40-9:55 Patrick McClary
9:55-10:40 Charlie Mars
10:40-10:55 Afrissippi's Guelel Kumba
10:55-11:40 Jimbo Mathus & the Tri-State Coalition
11:40-11:55 Tyler Keith
11:55-12:50 Colour Revolt

Saturday - August 29, 2009 (The Lyric)

5-6:00 Stork & Nick B.
6-6:30 Silas Reed
6:35-7:05 Sleeping Bulls
7:10-7:40 Kill the Ego
7:45-8:15 Sanders Bohlke
8:20 -9:05 Balance
9:10-9:55 Rocket 88
10-10:45 Mayhem String Band
10:50-11:50 Kudzu Kings

Thursday, August 27, 2009

If you have yet to see Joe York's latest short documentary, you can see it below. Titled "Cud," York and the Southern Foodways Alliance take a look at the cattle industry. The Western Diet is starting to get more attention as the health insurance issue is on the center stage. If you missed, Food, Inc at the Amp, then at least get a taste of what is being talked about in York's doc. Of course, I don't have to mention as a film, it is well done.

CUD from Joe York on Vimeo.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

WV Farmers Market Today!

Wednesday Farmers Market in the Valley!

Hey, Everybody!

Don't forget that this afternoon, rain or shine, the Water Valley Farmer's market will be set up under the magnolias on Main Street & we've got melons of all shapes and sizes, fresh tomatoes, homemade breads, fried pies, okra, peaches, green beans, peppers, purple hulls, and fresh hen eggs.


Buy American! Buy Mississippian! Buy Yalobushian!

See you there!

Monday, August 17, 2009


Joe returns this week to answer some of Oxford's most pressing questions. Forget therapy, forget your life coach . . . Joe will set all your problems straight.

There is this guy at my gym who always farts when he’s on the treadmill. I try and move but it’s getting to be ridiculous. Do I say something to him?

Dave, 23. Memphis

It's obvious this guy is extremely inconsiderate so saying something to him would be futile. Go take a shit in his gym bag.

Joe, I fake it with my husband all the time. Should I feel bad? Lately I’m just not into it.

-- Nameless, 29. Oxford

You shouldn't feel bad at all. More than likely he's pretending you're someone else. Maybe you should do the same.

What are your top five beers?

-- The Velvet Ditch

Chimay-Red Label. Shipyard Prelude, La Fin Du Monde, Guinness, and Budweiser.

Joe, I hooked up with a real ugly chick the other night. The problem is that I see her every weekend at the Grocery. How do I play it off without being a dick? -- James, 33. Oxford

It's practically impossible. Unless she's stalking you, there's no reason to be a dick. Get one of your buddies drunk enough to [Velvet Ditch inserts: "make love to"] her and he'll take on the brunt of the embarrassment.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Friday, August 7, 2009

Mini escape into Tupelo underground

If you are looking to escape Oxford for a night, head underground into Tupelo for the first ever Tupelo Underground Film Festival.

On Saturday, August 8th - at GOODTIME CHARLIE'S in Tupelo beginning at 5 p.m. for only $5, get admission to all the films, an art show and good food and beer. The house always has a $1 draft special going. It is a non-smoking environment (due to local laws) with an outdoor square for smoking.

This is an all-ages event. ID required to drink.

The lineup will include:
Features -
"In A Trice" - dir. Glenn Payne/Derek Payne
"Visioneers" starring Zach Galifianakis - dir. Jared Drake
"Teenage Tupelo" - dir. Mike McCarthy

Shorts -
"The Shovel" - dir. Stephen Lehman
"The Mistake" - dir. Michael Williams & April Wren
"The Collectors" - dir. Daniel Lee
"Walk Away" - dir. J. Alec Hawkins
"Cookies & Milk" - dir. April Wren

Music videos-
"H.P. Lovecraft" - Cockfight Club
"Freedom Slave" - Ukajie
"18 With a Bullet" - Fingers Like Saturn
"Work for the Gooch" - The Cooters (flimed at the infamous Court St. Billiard Hall)

Artists will include Josh Rhudy, Jessica Harbin, Stephanie Bray, Stephania Rajacich, Virginia Robinson, Glenn Payne and more TBA!

Good Time Charlie's is located at 2901 Eason Blvd, Tupelo MS 38801

The tentative timeline for features is:
5 pm - In A Trice
7:30 pm - Visioneers
9:30 pm - Teenage Tupelo
with shorts in between and brief intermissions

Filmmakers scheduled to attend: Glenn & Derek Payne, Ken Calloway, Mike McCarthy, Michael Williams, April Wren, Daniel Lee, J. Alec Hawkins, Russell Fox


22nd Annual Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival
August 7-8-9, 2009

Main Stage - John Lee Hooker Lane
4:15 pmDelta Blues Museum Band
5:00 pmBill Perry
6:00 pmRazorblade
7:00 pmGuitar Mikey with Nellie Tiger Travis
8:15 pmNathaniel Kimble
9:30 pmO.B. Buchana
Main Stage - John Lee Hooker Lane
1:30 pmGeorge Horn and South of Memphis Band
2:30 pmEddie Lee Coleman Band
3:30 pmWesley Jefferson Southern Soul Band
4:30 pmJames "Jimbo" Mathus
5:30 pmHomemade Jamz
6:45 pmSam Cooke Presentations, Early Wright, Julius Guy Awards
7:00 pmJames "Super Chikan" Johnson
8:00 pmCedric Burnside and Lightnin' Malcolm
9:15 pmBettye LaVette
Acoustic Stage - Issaquena & Blues Allwy Othar Turner Acoustic Stage - Inside Clarksdale Station (Historic Passenger Depot)
9:00 amFoster "Tater" Wylie
9:35 amRobert Belfour
10:05 amEddie Cusic
10:35 amPat Thomas
11:05 amT-Model Ford
11:35 amBig Jack Johnson
12:05 pmShardee Turner & the Rising Star Fife & Drum Band leading procession to the Main Stage
Sunflower Riverwalk Park Acoustic Stage No. 2 - Third & Sunflower
1:15 pmCharles Fowler
2:00 pmArthneice "Gas Man" Jones
2:45 pmBill Abel & Cadillac John
3:30 pmTerry "Harmonica" Bean
4:15 pmJimmy "Duck" Holmes
5:00 pmKenny Brown
5:45 pmJohnny Lowbow
Gospel Main Stage - Civic Auditorium - West Second & Leflore
4:00 pmChristopher Coleman
4:25 pmVoices of Joy
5:00 pmChapel Hill Men's Chorus
5:40 pmThe Myles Family
6:15 pmCarla Taylor
6:50 pmVincent Tharpe & Kenosis
7:25 pmBilly Rivers & Angelic Voices of Faith
8:00 pmMaurice Griffin
8:40 pmJessica Reedy


Tonight at 5:30 -- or somewhere about then -- you'll find the legendary Tyler Keith playing a solo show at the Blind Pig. These smaller and more laid-back performances without the Preachers Kids or the Apostles tap the real artistry in Tyler's music. The songwriting is great, played on acoustic or powered by electric and Budweiser. Hope to see you there to support one of the leaders of today's garage rock scene.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival

I won't bother reposting the whole thing here, but I've got an extended preview of this weekend's Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival in Clarksdale at my Highway 61 blog.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Thanks to this week's sponsor -- "Puppets For Jesus''

All of us at the velvet ditch gratefully appreciate the support of the folks over at Puppets For Jesus. A little silly voice offering words of wisdom should never be scorned, says my sock puppet Larry -- a real sinner in my eyes.


For those who missed the recent MTV docu-soap on our brothers and sisters up in Memphis, I highly recommend you check out the entire series now online. We're lucky enough to see many of these performers on the Square or on short drive up to the Bluff City. If you're not lucky enough to live in the Ditch, the show demonstrates that the MidSouth/Memphis continues to thrive. Directed by Memphis's own, Craig Brewer -- the man behind "Hustle and Flow'' and "Black Snake Moan.''

Head on over to Five Dollar Cover Memphis.

From Dirty South rap to garage rock to blues, the city has it all.

Monday, August 3, 2009