Blues Musician and Jackson native, Cedric Burnside, shares his favorite southern spots.
“I love to sit on my porch to reflect, listen to nature, and be inspired by my thoughts and the sounds around me,” Burnside shares. This is time well spent, as countless blues musicians before him discovered their groundbreaking tunes doing the very same thing.
Home of the Delta Blues
The authentic Jackson blues can still be found at the 70+ year old Blue Front Cafe, “Where Bentonia Blues from Mr. Jimmy Duck Holmes still inspires.” The Juke Joint once played an important role in the development of the Mississippi Blues, and is memorialized as a pillar of the deeply southern genre today.
Cedric Burnside playing outside the Blue Front Cafe, a juke joint near Jackson
Where to fill up
“For breakfast or lunch, you cannot miss sliding into a booth or sitting at the soda fountain counter inside Brent’s Drugs,” Burnside insists. Brent’s is like walking into a time machine that spits you out at a 1946 diner, serving eggs sunny side up, burgers and malts, and jukebox tunes. Outside of Brent’s, you may still find yourself double-checking the date, as the Fondren Arts District mimics the stylish art deco laden neighborhood it’s been since the 40s.
Sampling the diner-style favorites at Brent's Drugs
Be a part of the Jackson community
To mingle with Jacksonians changing the music scene for the youth of the city, stop by OffBeat Record Store for countless vinyl finds and colorful wall murals created by students. Located in the historic Belhaven area, OffBeat also offers designer toys, graphic novels and hard-to-find books on art.
Can’t get enough of those Delta Blues...
For more of the blues, “This is the birthplace after all, there’s no shortage of venues for live music,” Burnside insists. Both Hal & Mal’s and Martin’s are institutions of downtown Jackson where old and new blues musicians perform nightly over drinks and gumbo.
Cedric Burnside and a fellow blues musician at Hal & Mal's
So much southern culture, so little time
The Mississippi Museum of Art and the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, also both downtown, give a world class history lesson on how Jackson became a breeding ground for the arts that still thrives in the deeply southern city today.