Press Release from the Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival, 8/2/2011 – Publicist Panny Mayfield –

On stage Johnny Rawls is almost mobbed by cheering fans in 2010.

Nathaniel Kimble, in white, and his dancers present a high energy show

Nathaniel Kimble and his dancers present a high energy show.

David Brinston returns following his acclaimed 2007 appearance.

David Brinston returns following his acclaimed 2007 appearance.

Jamar Esaw  and Triad:4 Christ

Jamar Esaw and Triad:4 Christ

Headliner and Stella Award winner Evelyn Turrentine-Agee

Headliner and Stella Award winner Evelyn Turrentine-Agee.

CLARKSDALE – Steamy nights in August are no problem for the Sunflower Festival’s insatiable appetite for cool Southern Soul artists, says co-chairman Melville Tillis.

Following in the festival’s Friday night tradition of presenting soul masters topped by Latimore packing 9,000 music fans in Blues Alley will be Mid-South favorites: David Brinston and Nathaniel Kimble.

Returning following his 2007 performance, Brinston promises to include his sizzling “Hit and Run,” single in his program opening at 8 p.m.

The high-energy show of Nathaniel Kimble of “You Make Me Happy” fame opens at 9 p.m. and headlines the Friday night stage.

Soul continues its magic through the weekend with internationally-acclaimed Johnny Rawls on stage at 8:45 p.m. Saturday following his 2010 performance before hundreds screaming, cheering fans.

Named West Coast R&B Male Vocalist of the Year, Rawls has won two Blues Foundation Best Soul Album Awards for “Heart and Soul” and “Ace of Spades” and has been honored on a Mississippi Blues Trail marker with Tyrone Davis and Little Milton.

Although headliner Dorothy Moore was showcased this summer on the Jackson Music Awards Show: Kings and Queens of Southern Soul, she says, “I’m an R & B singer with a blues heart.”

Miss Moore opens her performance at 10 p.m. Saturday.

Gospel music heals and explodes with rhythm inside the Civic Auditorium Sunday with Chris Coleman opening at 4 p.m. followed by Edna Nicole Luckett and two long-time favorites: The Chapel Hill Men’s Chorus and The Myles Family.

Opening at 7 p.m., nationally-acclaimed Jamar Esaw and Triad 4 Christ is a 33-member voice choir that has been defined as the “future of gospel music.”

Headliner Evelyn Turrentine-Agee of Detroit, a Stella Award winner as Traditional Female Vocalist of the Year, is an evangelist and traditional gospel artist described as the “Queen of Quartet.”

Her performance begins at 8:15 p.m.

The Sunflower also features two acoustic stages packed with classic, quintessential blues musicians including Robert Cusic, Pat Thomas, T-Model Ford, Mr. Johnnie Billington, Lucious Spiller, Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, Bill Abel and Cadillac John, Kenny Brown, Terry “Harmonica” Bean, and many others.

For the 24th consecutive year the Rising Star Fife and Drum Band founded by the late Othar Turner and led now by his granddaughter, Shardee Turner, will march in procession.

The Sunflower has been listed as one of the Top Ten Places in America to hear authentic music by USA Weekend and is staged entirely by volunteers committed to keeping the festival free and accessible to all.Performers and productions costs are underwritten by grants and donations from foundations, corporations, businesses and individuals  to the Sunflower River Blues Association, a 501 c 3 organization. For additional information, visit the festival website ( that is managed without charge as a donation by webmasters, 305 Spin.