Sunflower’s Thanksgiving Eve blues party a howling success with 30th preview, Word family reunion & pint-size ‘Blues Brothers’

Totally immersed in the Sunflower’s Thanksgiving Eve blues party at Ground Zero are young ‘Blues Brothers’ Brayden, 9, and Landon, 7, Hendrix of Memphis with their grandfather Patrick Kennedy who performs with Razorblade.

 CLARKSDALE – Blues fans agree the Sunflower River Blues Association’s annual Thanksgiving Eve blues party at Ground Zero Blues Club was a howling success with a preview of its 30th anniversary, an extraordinary Excel Word family reunion/Sunflower School celebration, and a surprise appearance by pint-size Blues Brothers in full stage attire. 

  “The party was a great success. We are indebted to the super talented musicians who donated their performances, Bill Luckett and the Ground Zero staff, and all the patrons who supported this fund-raiser for our free August festival,” commented John Sherman, festival co-chair.

   Performing were six bands: Terry “Big T” Williams, Josh “Razorblade” Stewart, Dave Dunavant, Heather Crosse: Heavy Suga and the Sweet Tones, Robert Eskew, and James Super Chikan Johnson backed up by Lee Williams, Walt Busby, LaLa, Jamesa Turner, Patrick Kennedy, and Ice Williams. 

   Keyboard player Patrick Kennedy from Memphis, who performs with Razorblade, brought his wife, Christi, and their two grandsons: nine-year-old Braydon Hendrix, and seven-year-old Landen Hendrix. All three wore “Blues Brothers” attire, and the youngsters stayed in constant motion on the dance floor.

  Clarksdale Mayor Bill Luckett welcomed international visitors from the UK, Poland, and Australia, and a special welcome to Clarksdale resident Excel Word and his two brothers, all graduates of The Sunflower School. They headed a large multi-generation family reunion of members from Louisiana, Georgia, and Florida. 

   The Sunflower River Blues and Gospel Festival will celebrate its 30th anniversary in downtown Clarksdale August 11-12-13, 2017. For more information visit

Excel Word of Clarksdale (center) and his two brothers head a large family reunion of multi-generations from Louisiana, Georgia, and Florida at the Sunflower’s Thanksgiving blues party.

Mingling with the audience, James Super Chikan Johnson throws down a dynamic performance.