North Mississippi Allstars

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At the turn of the 21st century, brothers Luther and Cody Dickinson (scions of producer Jim Dickinson) and bassist Chris Chew issued their debut album, Shake Hands with Shorty, on Tone Cool Records. The set introduced American audiences to a new take on the music of their region, from blues and bluegrass to hip-hop and ragtime, energetically played with a reverence for both Delta tradition and rock & roll abandon within a framework based on their father's concept of blending experimental/psychedelic excursions into Hill Country anthems and improvisation.

For the brothers, the Allstars were a continuation of the tradition they'd been born into, one that included everything from the swampy, snaky blues of Junior Kimbrough and R.L. Burnside, Otha Turner's wooly fife and drum marches, the rock & roll pathos of Jerry Lee Lewis, and country-gospel. Since that time, the North Mississippi Allstars have continued to deliver an astonishing diversity of styles under an unapologetically muddy roots umbrella. Although they remain a trio, they've added players according to the needs recording or touring. Albums like 2005's Electric Blue Watermelon, 2008's Hernando, and 2013's World Boogie Is Coming, were celebrated globally for their rawness, intensity, and fresh spirit, while 2017's Prayer for Peace exported a global vision of the blues as international folk music.

The sons of legendary Memphis producer Jim Dickinson were born in Fayette County, Tennessee and the family later moved to northern Mississippi, where the boys soaked up the country-blues sound of the region from artists like Mississippi Fred McDowell and R.L. Burnside. This became the chief inspiration for the Allstars, but the group also mixed in a rock edge, an alternative aesthetic (comparable to outfits like the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion and the Black Keys), and their own early punk band D.D.T., with a road-ready rock & roll sensibility akin to jam bands like Phish. After touring as an opening act for a variety of artists and honing their chops as a unit, the North Mississippi Allstars issued their debut, Shake Hands with Shorty, in the spring of 2000. The album was a significant success, earning a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album, as was their 2001 sophomore set, 51 Phantom. Later in 2001, the North Mississippi Allstars teamed with John Medeski and pedal steel player Robert Randolph to form the Word, an instrumental gospel-blues band, for an album and tour.

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In Tune with: Luther Dickinson Pt 3 - Peterson Tuners
In Tune with: Luther Dickinson Part 2 - Peterson Tuners
In Tune with: Chris Chew
In Tune with: Luther Dickinson Pt .1
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