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Hit songwriters to make Delta return for DMI benefit

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, Delta Music Institute, Faculty/Staff, Students | No Comments

The Delta Music Institute Entertainment Industry Studies program at Delta State University will host its second “Writers in the Round” show on May 18 at the Delta Meat Market in downtown Cleveland.

The show will be held at 6 p.m. and will feature three-time GRAMMY® winner Ashley Cleveland, Dove award winner and writer of “Mary, Did You Know?,” Buddy Greene, A-Team Nashville session player Jeff Taylor, and DMI Director Tricia Walker.

The event serves as a fundraiser for DMI scholarships and programming.

“An ‘in the round’ songwriter show features professional songwriters in an intimate circular setting made famous at the Bluebird Café in Nashville, Tennessee,” said Walker, who was one of the mainstays of the venue during her years as a singer-songwriter in Music City. “It’s a wonderful way to experience the power and emotion of great songs sung by the writers themselves.”

Ashley Cleveland is a GRAMMY and Dove Award winner who has released eight critically acclaimed albums. “God Don’t Never Change” features songs rooted firmly in a host of traditions — black spirituals, folk songs, 18th century hymns, gospel blues and jubilee. The disc was nominated for a GRAMMY Award for Best Traditional Gospel Album.

Buddy Greene has worked with the most celebrated names in the music industry, among them Bill and Gloria Gaither, the late Jerry Reed, and Mark Lowry, with whom he wrote the Christmas classic “Mary, Did You Know?”  The song has been recorded numerous times, including covers by Kenny Rogers, Wynonna, Natalie Cole, Glen Campbell, Kathy Mattea, CeeLo Green, Clay Aiken and Pentatonix. Greene has performed for more than a quarter of a million people in New York’s Central Park and has been a part of Praise Gatherings for more than two decades and toured all over the world.

Jeff Taylor grew up in Batavia, New York, and studied classical piano at the Eastman School of Music. He has lived in Nashville since 1990 and counts among his performing highlights his two years as bandleader at the Ryman Auditorium for the musical production “Always, Patsy Cline,” the Skaggs Family Christmas Tour, and many appearances on the Grand Ole Opry backing numerous artists. He has recorded with Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, Harry Connick Jr., Amy Grant, George Strait, Vince Gill and The Chieftains. He was a featured artist on the 2007 GRAMMY-winning Best Bluegrass Album, Ricky Skaggs “Instrumentals”. In addition to excelling on accordion and piano, he also shines on the concertina, penny whistle, mandolin and bouzouki.

Seating is limited to 85 seats. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Delta Music Institute office at 662-846-4579 between 8 a.m. and noon Monday-Thursday.

The DMI is an independent center of study under the College of Arts and Sciences at Delta State University, offering a bachelor’s degree in entertainment industry studies. The focus of the DMI is to provide students with a broad and thorough education in the technological, creative and business areas of the music and entertainment industry. For information, visit http://dmi.deltastate.edu.

DMI-Senior-Showcase

Delta Music Institute presents Senior Showcase

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, Delta Music Institute, Students | No Comments

The Delta Music Institute entertainment industry studies program at Delta State University will host its first Senior Showcase on April 24 at 7 p.m. downtown on the Green Space in Cleveland to showcase the range of talent coming out of the DMI.

The Senior Showcase will promote original music by DMI students in the DMI Senior Project class by featuring performances from a diverse group of entertainers.

Included in the line-up are: Jessica Faith, Scott’s House, Deering, Carrie Lynn, Mic Hargrove, From the Pier, Thomas Walker & the Garment of Praise Choir, and the DMI All-Stars, a select group of Delta State students who performed for Mississippi Night during GRAMMY® week in Los Angeles.

“This is the first semester that DMI has showcased all the students in the senior project class on one show, and I think the public will be really impressed with the depth and diversity of talent on the show,” said DMI Director Tricia Walker. “And in the collaborative nature of the DMI, students in the Live Event practicum course, under the direction of Charly Abraham, will be managing the event and handling all production for the show.”

Kacee Russell, lead singer and songwriter for the band Scott’s House, said, “I’m excited to show everybody a few of the songs Scott’s House has been working on, and it’s cool that the DMI seniors will get to show off their hard work to people who might not normally come out to a show. It’s going to be a good ole time.”

The showcase is free and open to the public, and concessions will be available for purchase from the Levee Break Grill and Delta Dairy. Attendees are advised to bring a lawn chair or blanket for seating.

The DMI is an independent center of study under the College of Arts and Sciences at Delta State University, offering a bachelor’s degree in Entertainment Industry Studies. The focus of the DMI is to provide students with a broad and thorough education in the technological, creative, and business areas of the music and entertainment industry. For information, visit http://dmi.deltastate.edu.

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Delta State recognized in Architect Magazine

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, Delta Music Institute, Faculty/Staff, GRAMMY, Students | No Comments

Delta State University and its signature Delta Music Institute program were recently mentioned in an Architect Magazine article about Grammy Museum® Mississippi.

The article credits the Delta Music Institute for having the most unique audio recording facilities in the South.

The article also praises the new 28,000-square-foot museum, housed on Delta State’s campus, for its distinct state-of-the-art architectural design, inside and out.

Read the full story at http://www.architectmagazine.com/project-gallery/grammy-museum-mississippi.

Learn more about opportunities with the Delta Music Institute at http://www.deltastate.edu/artsandsciences/delta-music-institute.

Thacker Mt. 2017

Thacker Mountain Radio Show returning to DMI

By | Community, Delta Music Institute, Uncategorized | No Comments
Thacker Mountain Radio Show returns to the Delta Music Institute at Delta State with special guests Susan Puckett and Buddy Greene.

The Delta Music Institute entertainment industry program at Delta State University will host the award-winning Thacker Mountain Radio Show on March 4 at 3 p.m. in DMI Studio A in the Whitfield Building on campus.

This marks the ninth year for the Thacker Mountain Delta Edition event, which celebrates DMI’s innovative program and serves as a fundraising event to support the Duff Dorrough Memorial Scholarship fund.

Susan Puckett, this year’s featured author, is a native of Jackson. She was the food editor for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution for nearly 19 years before leaving in 2008 to pursue independent projects. Her forte throughout her career has been finding and telling food stories with a sense of place. After leaving the paper, she traveled extensively through the Mississippi Delta to explore its unique foodways, and produced a travelogue with recipes called “Eat Drink Delta: A Hungry Traveler’s Journey Through the Soul of the South.” 

Puckett is currently working on a book with chef Eddie Hernandez of the Atlanta-based Taqueria del Sol restaurants (and winner of the 2013 Delta Hot Tamale Festival celebrity chef competition), to be published by Houghton-Mifflin in 2018. Her work has also appeared in Atlanta Magazine, The Local Palate, Better Homes and Gardens, Eating Well, National Geographic Traveler, and many other publications. Puckett lives in downtown Decatur, Georgia, with her journalist husband, Ralph Ellis, and their greyhound, Rita.

Award-winning singer-songwriter Buddy Greene will be this year’s featured musician for the Delta Edition show. A native of Macon, Georgia, Greene graduated to the national stage when he landed a gig playing guitar and harmonica for country entertainer Jerry Reed and serving as his opening act. After four years performing with Reed, Greene took up residence in Nashville, where he developed a reputation as an insightful songwriter, compelling vocalist and musician of considerable skill.

In addition to being in the creative trenches with some of the industry’s unsung heroes, Greene has also worked with the most celebrated names in the music industry, among them Bill and Gloria Gaither, the late Jerry Reed, and Mark Lowry, with whom he wrote the Christmas classic “Mary, Did You Know?” The song has been recorded numerous times, including covers by Kenny Rogers, Wynonna Judd, Natalie Cole, Glen Campbell, Kathy Mattea, CeeLo Green, Clay Aiken and Pentatonix. Greene has performed for more than a quarter of a million people in New York’s Central Park as part of a Billy Graham Crusade, and has been a part of praise gatherings for more than two decades, touring all over the world.

In addition to this year’s featured guests, DMI Director Tricia Walker will offer up a song and DMI’s Ol’ Skool Revue band will perform a few R&B, soul and blues hits. Thacker Mountain Radio is hosted by Jim Dees and features the show’s talented house band, The Yalobushwhackers.

Thacker in the Delta is open to the public at no charge, but donations to the DMI Duff Dorrough Memorial Scholarship fund are encouraged along with signing up for an annual membership with the Friends of DMI. For online giving, visit www.deltastategiving.org and search for Delta Music Institute.

The Delta Music Institute is an independent center of study under the College of Arts and Sciences at Delta State University, offering a bachelor’s degree in entertainment industry studies. The focus of the DMI is to provide students with a broad and thorough education in the technological, creative and business areas of the music and entertainment industry. For information, contact 662- 846-4579 or visit http://dmi.deltastate.edu.

DMI-All-Stars-Performance-Photo

DMI All Stars take on Los Angeles

By | Academics, College of Arts and Sciences, Delta Music Institute, GRAMMY, Students | No Comments
Delta State students in the DMI All Stars band recently performed atop GRAMMY Museum® at L.A. Live.

For the fifth consecutive year, the DMI All Stars – a select group of musicians from the Delta Music Institute program at Delta State University – performed a collection of Mississippi centric covers on Mississippi Night during GRAMMY® Week in Los Angeles, California.

The group, under the direction of DMI instructor Charly Abraham and assisted by DMI instructor Barry Bays, consisted of 12 students who performed in the band or assumed management positions. The DMI All Stars provided an excellent performance atop the Target Terrace on the fifth floor of the GRAMMY Museum® at L.A. Live.

With many notable musicians and GRAMMY representatives in attendance, the All Stars showcased their musical abilities for a group of respected industry professionals.DMI-All-Stars-Group-Photo

The performance was a great experience for many of the students, including vocalist Audrianna Johnson from Grenada.

“My experience in Los Angeles felt like a dream come true,” she said. “Words can’t explain how grateful I am for the opportunities I’ve had.”

In addition to performing on a special night, the students were able to get a taste of the city life while exploring locales such as downtown Hollywood, Malibu and Venice Beach.

“Going to L.A. with the All Stars gave me an opportunity to make new friends and share great memories with them,” said Carrie Lynn Stanford from Gautier, a vocalist for the DMI All Stars.

This year, entertainment industry studies senior Lindsey Anna Pardue from Clinton chose to use the L.A. trip as part of her senior project by acting as directing manager and overseeing the trip, as well as scheduling rehearsals for the band.

“Going to Los Angeles with the DMI All Stars is always amazing, but it was especially interesting this year because I had the opportunity to direct the group,” said Pardue. “I am honored to have been able to spend my time with such a kind, talented and fun group of students.”

The DMI is an independent center of study under the College of Arts and Sciences at Delta State University, offering a bachelor’s degree in entertainment industry studies. The focus of the DMI is to provide students with a broad and thorough education in the technological, creative, and business areas of the music and entertainment industry.

To learn more about the GRAMMY connection with the Delta Music Institute at Delta State, visit http://dmi.deltastate.edu.