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Mississippi Marshall Hopper, a bluesman whose music is a collection of life experiences

"The blues music of today sometimes lacks realism for me. I fear that if more young bluesmen don’t start bring the realism back to their blues that we may see the genre morph into something that may have never existed."

Mississippi Marshall: The Delta's Son

Mississippi Marshall is a sho' nuff real deal bluesman who's music is a collection of life experiences and is influenced by the blues legends he grew up around in the Mississippi Delta. Mississippi Marshall (Hopper) has been labeled "The Delta's Son" for years and his guitar and vocal styling are reminiscent of the Delta as well as the Texas searing blues styling. Mississippi Marshall was born and raised right in the heart of the Mississippi delta and grew up playing both the black and white jukes along the Mississippi River from Memphis to New Orleans.

Mississippi picked up his first guitar at age 8 and ain’t ever let it go. As a boy he had the good fortune to meet and play along with some of the great delta legends and it certainly shows in his unique delta thumbing guitar style. Mississippi has been a songwriter for over 30 years and has come to the realization the blues is who he is. Mississippi Marshall performs as a solo, a duo (Mississippi Marshall & Mojo Foots”, and also has the rockabilly blues trio known though out the Northwest as “The Juke Daddys”. He also hosts a vintage blues radio show on KRBX Radio Boise 89.9 and 93.5fm in the Boise, ID area on Monday evenings. The radio show is a huge source for blues history and education of its players. Mississippi Marshall’s personal vision and contribution for the Boise Blues Society is to help foster a healthy educated blues community through his performances, radio, and personally promoting the blues in a positive professional manner.

Interview by Michael Limnios

What do you learn about yourself from the blues and what does the blues mean to you?

I was raised in the Mississippi Delta. The “Blues” has been a part of my life from a very early early age. What I have learned about myself through the blues is that I am a small part of blues history. Not because I learned to play the blues or heard it on the radio or I read about it but because I lived it from a young boy growing up on the cotton farms of Mississippi and am still living it. The blues is a way of life, a passion, the truth. I’ve literally had the blues all my life and it comes in all shapes and sizes. The blues means so much to me. It’s who I am. My music is blues roots based because I am blues roots based. I have such a respect for the delta blues forefathers and have an understanding of what they were trying to convey through their music. Blues is a way of life for me and will always be.

What experiences in your life make you a GOOD BLUESMAN and SONGWRITER?

As I stated before, I grew up with the blues and started playing professionally in the delta at the age of 11. I grew up around a lot of the delta legends and made it my business to study and learn all I could from them. I played many of the same Juke Joints on weekends. I lived the blues life, working on the farm during the week, playing the jukes and house parties where I began to understanding that the blues wasn’t just a music, but a lifestyle. Once I accepted who I was I was able to start putting into words the life I saw and experienced. Good songwriting has to have substance. It has to paint a picture for the listener and it has to be real. When I write songs I try to make the listener see and understand what I’m feeling at the time.

Read the full interview at:

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