Bobby Rush reflects on playing the Chitlin Circut in this short video.
Congratulations to Mississippi Bluesman Bobby Rush who won a Grammy Sunday night. Rush, pictured above showing off his "lover's underwear" during a Memphis performance, keeps his audience in stitches while he sings them the blues. Rush, at age 83, has been entertaining almost his entire life and is one of the last great entertainers from his generation.
I have been at a few funerals with Bobby as some of the great Mississippi Bluesmen were being put to rest. Rush played harmonica and led the guests in a procession outside as people left the funeral of piano Bluesman Pinetop Perkins.
He also entertained the crowd before the funeral of B.B. King in Memphis.
Rush told me one time, as he choked up, that he is "thankful to still be present." He frequently shows up at his gigs in his van which is loaded full of his wardrobe and records to sell.
By winning a Grammy he has come a long way from the days when he played the "Chitlin Circuit" for hamburgers. He tells the story that in those days he played from behind a curtain. The all white audiences didn't want to see their faces.
"Everything has changed but remains the same" he said.
Bobby Performing Live at the Center For Southern Folklore Festival
©Karen Pulfer Focht Pictures not for use without written permission