MERIDIAN — The Grammy-winning bluegrass group Steep Canyon Rangers is among performers at this year’s Jimmie Rodgers Music Festival in Meridian.
The 62nd annual festival is May 1-2 on the lawn of the Meridian City Hall.
The Stone County Rangers won a Grammy in 2013 for their album “Nobody Knows You.” Joining them for performances on May 1 will be Britt Gully and Amanda Shines. On May 2, Alabama native Jason Isbell will headline along with performances by Scott McQuaig and The Tomcats, Emi Sunshine, Holly Williams, Seryn and St. Paul and The Broken Bones.
“We’re trying to appeal to all age groups. The festival has a varied lineup that includes bluegrass, Americana and country,” Jimmie Rodgers Memorial Foundation President Betty Lou Jones told The Meridian Star.
“We’re focusing on the fact that Jimmie Rodgers is more than country music. While he is the Father of Country Music, he has made significant contributions to all genres of music — rock ‘n’ roll, jazz, gospel, blues and other music forms,” she said.
Born in Meridian on Sept. 8, 1897, Rodgers, the “Father of Country Music,” recorded more than 120 songs. Rodgers was also known as the “Singing Brakeman” for his work on the railroad. He made his first recording in 1927.
Rodgers died of tuberculosis at the age of 35 on May 26, 1933 in New York City. He was the first performer elected to Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame in 1961.
Rodgers also has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame (1970) and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1986). He also has been honored with a Mississippi Blues Trail marker in Meridian in 2007.
The first star on the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Center’s Walk of Fame was dedicated to Rodgers in 2009. Rodgers was honored with the first marker on the Mississippi Country Music Trail in 2010.
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