Features Mississippi and music films plus special guests and more! January 26-27, 2018

Clarksdale Film and Music Festival 2018

Clarksdale Film and Music Festival 2018

CLARKSDALE, MISSISSIPPI — The 8th annual Clarksdale Film Festival returns to “Bluestown, USA” — Clarksdale, Mississippi — Friday-Saturday, January 26-27. And it’s going to be a real house party.
“This is a curated film festival, so it’s not just ‘whatever films came out this year,'” said co-founder Roger Stolle. “We premiere new works, of course, but we also showcase films that we think are important and folks may have missed.”
Films this year range from Two Trains Runnin’ (a blues-meets-civil rights story about the search for 1930s Mississippi bluesmen during Freedom Summer) and Shake Sister Shake (world-premiere about women in blues, including Clarksdalians) to Love is a Sensation (special preview of Mississippi folk artist LV Hull’s new bio-pic) and Chasing Trane (the highly-acclaimed John Coltrane documentary).

The full Clarksdale Film Festival schedule is available online at www.clarksdalefilmfestival.com

The 20-some films will screen at two pop-up theaters: New Roxy (the covered, inside front bar area at 363 Issaquena Ave.) and Grandma’s Sports Bar (115 3rd St., next to Grandma’s House of Pancakes). Tickets will be available at both doors.

The Delta Bohemian® and Grammy winner Eric Tingstad have collaborated on a music film featuring tracks from the popular CD “Mississippi.” The Delta Bohemian® has paired photographs and videos by Magical Madge, Chilly Billy Howell and Andrea Vlonk to a number of the songs.

We hope you will join us for the showing of “Mississippi – An Eric Tingstad Delta Bohemian Experience”  on Friday, January 26, at 4:15PM at Grandma’s Sports Bar. 

Mississippi Eric Tingstad Delta Bohemian Experience showing at Clarksdale Film Festival

The film festival — which specializes in blues/roots music and Mississippi-related movies — is also about more than just screenings, according to co-organizer Nan Hughes.
“In addition to all of the wonderful films, we feature History Bus Tours of Clarksdale, a film workshop for kids, live blues music, a daily reception, special guests and more,” said Hughes. “It’s really just another excuse to show off our amazing, little music town.”
Directors agree there is something special about screening their work in the home of the Crossroads.
New York director Lesley Abbey said, “My documentary brings together generations of Long Island’s blues greats. To be acknowledged by Clarksdale, Mississippi, where it all began, is truly an honor.” Her film Big Fish Blues will make its Mississippi premiere at the fest.
Similarly, Lisa Eismen, Australian director of Shake Sister Shakesaid, “I love Clarksdale, and I’m so excited to have the world premiere of my film there. It’s the perfect fit.”
Speaking of perfect fits, one of the festival’s more popular events is its daily 5 pm music reception, which this year will be held at Grandma’s Sports Bar and feature bluesmen Lucious Spiller (Fri.) and Sean “Bad” Apple (Sat.) along with complimentary hors d’oeuvres while they last.
The Clarksdale Film Festival admission is just $5 per day, thanks to sponsors that include Clarksdale-Coahoma County Tourism and Clarksdale Public Utilities among several others. Each ticket includes all official events at both theaters — movies, tours, receptions.
According to Hughes, this non-profit film event is always in search of additional support. Interested sponsors, donors and volunteers can email her at [email protected]. She also notes that next year’s film festival is scheduled for January 25-26, 2019.
(The non-profit’s other festival is Clarksdale’s biggest annual event — Juke Joint Festival & Related Events, April 12-15, 2018. More information on that weekend at www.jukejointfestival.com)
“Since we’re in Clarksdale, Mississippi, we have live blues 7 nights a week, every week,” said Stolle. “We hope that music and film fans will come in for the movies but stay for the blues. After all, we’re not called ‘Bluestown, USA’ for nothing!”
For more information about Clarksdale’s blues scene, see Sounds Around Town in Clarksdale.

“Mississippi gets its close-up… to celebrate the Magnolia State’s films and filmmakers.” — Garden & Gun magazine

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