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This Mississippi Blues Trail marker commemorates lifelong resident Big Jack Johnson (1940-2011) who was the lead man and guitarist for the Jelly Roll Kings. The marker is located outside Red's Club, which Johnson considered his "home base." Johnson was known as one of the most creative guitarists and lyricists in the blues genre.

The Big Jack Johnson Mississippi Blues Trail Marker is located outside of Red's Club in Clarksdale.

Motor vehicle, Font, Brickwork, Landmark

Big Jack Johnson was known as one of the most celebrated blues musicians in Mississippi.

Musical instrument, Microphone, Musician, Guitar

Jack Johnson was born in 1940 in Lambert, Mississippi, about a twenty-minute drive to Clarksdale. His father, Ellis Johnson, played the fiddle in his own band and was Big Jack's earliest inspiration. Originally playing electric guitar in his father's band, Big Jack switched to electric guitar in the 1960s, forming The Nighthawks. Together with Nighthawks drummer Sam Carr, Johnson picked up harp player Frank Carr, and the group changed its name to The Jelly Roll Kings. The group was popular locally, but virtually unknown outside of the area until 1979, when their album Rockin’ the Juke-Joint Down received critical acclaim. After the release of Rockin', the group began touring nationally and internationally. The group performed together from 1962 until the 1990s.

Big Jack Johnson, Mississippi Blues Trail. Accessed April 13th 2021.

Big Jack Johnson "The Oil Man", Delta Blues Museum. Accessed April 13th 2021.

Big Jack Johnson, All About Blues Music. Accessed April 13th 2021.

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