(Clarksdale, MS) – “I don’t think that there’s any question that the blues is the bedrock of all American music …. Take away the blues, and you’re left with a very shaky hierarchy of American music,” says Robert Santelli, executive director of The Grammy Museum.
It was good news to hear last week that the Delta Blues Museum in Clarksdale is getting a share of money distributed by the Delta Regional Authority, along with federal and state partners, to benefit a variety of projects throughout Mississippi.
The museum will get $1.6 million — $163,903 is the Delta Regional Authority’s contribution — to upgrade exhibits so they will be more interactive and, hopefully, more engaging for younger visitors who didn’t grow up with the blues the way many older visitors did.
“We need to perpetuate the experience of the blues for younger generations that didn’t grow up with this music,” said Shelley Ritter, the museum’s executive director. “They may have a family member who was a part of the blues experience, but they didn’t know about it except through stories. So, we want to make it as immersive as possible so they’ll really appreciate the story.”