Published on November 20th, 2019 | by TLV News1
GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi Presents “Have Yourself a Delta Little Christmas”
Special evening of festive and inspirational holiday music to held on Monday, December 2
GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi will present “Have Yourself A Delta Little Christmas,” an evening of festive and inspirational holiday music, on Monday, December 2, at 7 pm in the museum’s Sanders Soundstage in Cleveland, Mississippi. A pre-event reception will take place at 6 pm featuring holiday hors d’oeuvres. Tickets for “Have Yourself A Delta Little Christmas” are on sale at www.grammymuseumms.org. Proceeds will benefit the education mission of GRAMMY Museum Mississippi.
The evening’s featured performers will include Delta artists Steve Azar, the B.B. King Museum All Stars, the Buford Sisters, Variety, and Tricia Walker. The evening’s headliner will be Dove Award-winning artist Buddy Greene, who wrote the Christmas classic “Mary, Did You Know?” Greene will be accompanied by multi-instrumentalist Jeff Taylor.
Proceeds from “Have Yourself A Delta Little Christmas” will benefit the music education programs of GRAMMY Museum Mississippi, which seek to use music as a gateway to learning by inspiring and cultivating creativity, critical thinking and self-expression.
Buddy Greene is one of Nashville’s most accomplished and respected musicians. Greene has been performing for audiences since the tender age of 10, with his first big break coming when he landed a position in country superstar Jerry Reed’s band. Over the last 30-plus years, Greene has performed across America, made numerous trips abroad, and released 20 recording projects. His album, Sojourner’s Song, won the Gospel Music Association’s Dove Award for Best Country Album, and he has received nine other Dove Award nominations. Through his long association with Bill and Gloria Gaither, Greene has become a favorite gospel performer, appearing often on the Gaithers’ popular Homecoming video series where Greene’s performance of the “William Tell Overture” at Carnegie Hall has been viewed by millions on YouTube.
Professional accordionist and multi-instrumentalist Jeff Taylor grew up in Batavia, New York, and began playing accordion and keyboards in his dad’s band when he was 10. He studied classical piano at the Eastman School of Music and was leader of a small jazz/rock group when he was in the Air Force in Ohio. He has recorded with Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, Harry Connick Jr., Keith and Kristyn Getty, Amy Grant, George Strait, the Chieftains, Martina McBride, Buddy Greene, Vince Gill, and Ricky Skaggs. He was a featured artist on the Ricky Skagg’s & Kentucky Thunder Instrumentals album that won a GRAMMY in 2007 for Best Bluegrass Album. Besides excelling on accordion and piano, he also shines on the concertina, penny whistle, mandolin, and bouzouki.
A modern-day renaissance man, hit songwriter, recording artist, music producer, talk show host, golfer, and philanthropist, Steve Azar likes to call his own breed of music “Delta Soul,” a mixture of country, rock, and blues. His debut album Waitin’ On Joe was released in 2001, with the title track going to No. 1 on CMT. From the same album, the hit single “I Don’t Have To Be Me, ‘Til Monday,” received three Million-Air awards from BMI and is one of the top five most-played songs of the past decade on country radio. As a songwriter, Azar has had cuts by Reba McEntire, among many others, and has written successfully for several movies. Azar currently serves as the official Music & Culture Ambassador of Mississippi and was the recipient of the 2018 Governor’s Choice Award, given annually by the Mississippi Arts Commission. Azar also enjoys being the artist in residence at the Delta Music Institute Entertainment Industry Studies program at Delta State University.
A Mississippi singer/songwriter, Tricia Walker has become one of the clearest voices of her own time and place. She earned a bachelor’s degree in music education from Delta State University and a graduate degree from Mississippi College before moving to Nashville where she signed publishing contracts with gospel music publisher Word, Inc. and Polygram Music. At Polygram, she wrote for legendary producer Jerry Kennedy. Her songs have been recorded on GRAMMY-nominated discs by Kathy Troccoli, Debby Boone, the Imperials, Patty Loveless, Faith Hill, and Alison Krauss, whose performance of Walker’s “Looking in the Eyes of Love” earned a GRAMMY Award. Walker’s instrumental skills earned her a spot as a backing musician and vocalist for Connie Smith, Shania Twain, and Paul Overstreet. Along with Pam Tillis, Karen Staley, and Ashley Cleveland, Walker was a founding member of “Women in the Round,” one of the most celebrated foursomes at Nashville’s prestigious Bluebird Café. Walker returned to her native Mississippi in 2006 to become director of the Delta Music Institute, an entertainment industry studies program at Delta State University, and recently retired from that position. She was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2019 by the Mississippi Writer’s Guild.
Hailing from Glendora, Mississippi, The Buford Sisters have been singing together since before they can remember. Their annual Christmas concert features three generations of Buford women—mother Gwin, four daughters, and two granddaughters. The four musically talented sisters, Lee Threadgill, Pryor Lampton, Sarah Goodwyn, and Donna Spell will share the spotlight for the GRAMMY Museum Mississippi’s “Have Yourself A Delta Little Christmas” show.
The popular brother/sister duo of Eric and Shara Edwards, Variety has been performing together for more than 25 years, traveling across the country entertaining audiences with multiple styles of music, from country to R&B. They have performed for private parties, family reunions, festivals, and churches. Even though the sister and brother perform a “variety” of music, gospel music has always been the forefront for the duo. Together, they have recorded four gospel albums, and Eric recently released a solo R&B album entitled, Those Vinyl Days.
Under the direction of Jimmie Lee, Jr., The B.B. King Museum All Stars perform to inspire Mississippi Delta youth and enhance their academic, cognitive, performance, and leadership skills by utilizing music to express themselves as well as communicate with others. Their mission is to empower, unite, and heal through music, art, and education while sharing with the world the rich cultural heritage of the Mississippi Delta.
Developed by the Cleveland Music Foundation—a nonprofit organization founded in 2011—the 28,000-square-foot GRAMMY Museum Mississippi is housed near the campus of Delta State University, home of the Delta Music Institute’s Entertainment Industry Studies program, which features the most unique audio recording facilities in the South. Affiliated with the Recording AcademyTM, GRAMMY Museum Mississippi is dedicated to exploring the past, present, and future of music, and the cultural context from which it emerges, while casting a focused spotlight on the deep musical roots of Mississippi. The Museum features a dynamic combination of public events, educational programming, engaging multimedia presentations, and interactive permanent and traveling exhibits, including a Mississippi-centric area that introduces visitors to the impact of Mississippi’s songwriters, producers, and musicians on the traditional and modern music landscape.
To stay up-to-date on GRAMMY Museum Mississippi programming, subscribe to the Museum’s newsletter at grammymuseumms.org/newsletter.