On Aug. 25, the 15th marker on the Mississippi Blues Trail will be dedicated in Bentonia in honor of The Blue Front Cafe. Jimmy "Duck" Holmes, whose parents started the juke joint more than 50 years ago and who is the current owner, will be there for the dedication.
Holmes studied under Jack Owens, who performed often at The Blue Front (as did Skip James). Owens was still playing actively until 1997, when he died at the age of 92. Owens' and James' music is often dubbed "the Bentonia school of blues" and is marked by unique guitar tuning and falsetto.
Last year, Holmes paid tribute to his teacher's lesson on his debut CD, Back to Bentonia, which received two Living Blues Awards recently for Best Debut Recording and Best New Recording. Jeff Konkel, who produced the CD, also won a Living Blues Award for Best Producer. (Watch Jimmy play here.)