SCENE/SOUNDS: Willie King’s Freedom Creek Festival 5/29 & 30

WILLIE KING’S FREEDOM CREEK FESTIVAL 2009

in honor of the late, great Willie King, will take place on

Friday 29th May and Saturday 30th May

featuring

the Legendary Kenny Neal

Cedric Burnside and Lightenin’ Malcolm

the spirit of Willie King

and many more!!!!

Old Memphis, near Aliceville, Alabama

On Sunday, March 8, 2009 the outstanding Alabama blues musician Willie King passed away near his home in Old Memphis, Alabama, following a massive heart attack. His career started on a plantation with a one-string, homemade diddly-bo. Six recordings and a DVD later, along with numerous national and international festival performances, Willie King has gained a substantial national and international reputation.

Ever since he first heard a blues musician play at this grandmother’s juke joint over sixty years ago, Willie King has been consumedby the blues. His life story is about great music but equally it is about care, interest and concern for the community he grew up in – King’s own definition of the “blues life.”

The loss of this great blues man will be felt by fans and musicians all over the world who have been touched by his unique juke joint blues and uplifting message of peace, love and social justice.

The funeral took place on Sunday, March 15th at 2pm at the City Hall in Aliceville, Alabama. A wake was held the day before on Saturday, March 14, from 1 – 3 pm at Lavender’s Funeral Home.

Like many artists, Willie King had little money and made no provisions for his burial costs. The Willie King Memorial Fund has been created for those who wish to help with funeral expenses and to create a historic marker celebrating Willie King’s life and works. Please send contributions to “The Willie King Memorial Fund,” c/o West Alabama Bank, Attention Tammy, PO Box 406, Aliceville AL 35442 or donate online through PayPal. (source)

Thanks to Jeanie Thompson at Alabama Writer’s Forum for first telling me about Willie’s passing. She wrote: “Anne, this is a real loss. He was only 66. He was to receive a big award at the Governor’s Arts Awards in May. Everyone is very sad…”

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