Congrats to Mississippi Blues legend Cedric Burnside on winning an Excellence in Music award from The Mississippi Arts Commission. 2024 Governor’s Arts Awards.
(of Memphis, TN, raised in Holly Springs, MS)
North Mississippi Hill Country blues musician Cedric Burnside was born in Memphis on August 26, 1978. For three decades, Burnside gained rich experience performing in the Hill Country blues tradition, notably playing drums for many years with his grandfather, Hill Country blues legend RL Burnside (1926-2005).
Cedric gained acclaim among blues fans for his powerful and enthusiastic drumming, as well as his off-stage charm and poise. Burnside later became active as a vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter for work that both honored local traditions and broke new ground musically.
He is the recipient of multiple Blues Music Awards and Living Blues Awards. His album, I Be Trying (2021), won a GRAMMY for Best Traditional Blues Album. In 2021 Burnside was named a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) National Heritage Fellow. Shortly after receiving the NEA National Heritage Fellowship, he began appearing in the touring musical Voices of Mississippi, based on the fieldwork of folklorist William Ferris.
The musical, staged at Lincoln Center in early 2022, celebrates Burnside’s and other younger artists’ deep roots in Hill Country traditions.