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Why historic Highway 61 is the best road trip for music lovers
You’ve heard of the Pacific Coast Highway, the road trip from Miami to Key West along highway one, and Route 66. But there are so many other adventures to be had in the USA. And when it comes to the perfect road trip for music lovers, none is better than Highway 61.
For those of you touring via camper or RV, GoRVing.com provides excellent information on where to camp in all 50 states.
*GoRVing is a sponsor of Samantha Brown’s Places to Love, but opinions are all my own.*
Highway 61: The best road trip for music lovers
Running from Minnesota down to New Orleans, this iconic route is known for Mississippi River views, great food and blues music. It’s up to you where you’d like to start, but music lovers should turn their focus to the Mississippi section of the drive.
Drive the old Blues Highway—Route 61 between Memphis and Marigold, MS—in search of music, and you’ll find it everywhere you turn. For over 100 years, the Mississippi Delta has served as the heart and soul of blues music. More famous blues musicians have come from this area than any other region. Download the free Blues Trail app, which points you to historical markers, helps you create a custom itinerary with turn-by-turn directions, and even suggests songs inspired by the landscape.
Some places of note include Clarksdale, home of the Delta Blues Museum, Dreamboat BBQ and Tamales, and numerous juke joints, including Ground Zero Blues Club, owned by Morgan Freeman. Delta Meat Market in Cleveland is a great place to stock up the fridge with yummy charcuterie, cheeses and specialty foods. You can (and should!) grab a meal there, too—lots of fresh salads, sandwiches and baked goods.
Though located a bit east of the highway, you’ll find the B.B. King Museum in Indianola. Worth the detour! Find one of the best burgers and frozen treats in the delta just outside Rolling Fork at Chuck’s.
You’ll find a great list of RV parks and campground on Mississippi’s Great River Road website. The Twin Cities, Chicago, St. Louis, Memphis, Nashville, Baton Rouge and New Orleans all could serve as ideal bookends for this trip.
Have you explored Highway 61? What are your favorite stops?
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This Post Has 4 Comments
Standing on the corner in Indianola where BB King played to the white populace. A place of amazing reverence to me. The BB King Cultural Center is top notch as well.
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When I think of Highway 61, I remember hearing about Bob Dylan singing about it.
Oh, God said to Abraham, “Kill me a son”
Abe say, “Man, you must be puttin’ me on”
God say, “No”, Abe say, “What?”
God say, “You can do what you want Abe
But the next time you see me comin’, you better run”
Well, Abe said, “Where you want this killin’ done?”
God said, “Out on Highway 61”
Well, Georgia Sam, he had a bloody nose
Welfare Department, they wouldn’t give him no clothes
He asked poor Howard, “Where can I go?”
Howard said, “There’s only one place I know”
Sam said, “Tell me quick, man, I got to run”
Old Howard just pointed with his gun
And said, “That way, down on Highway 61”
Well, Mack the Finger said to Louie the King
“I got forty red white and blue shoe strings
And a thousand telephones that don’t ring
Do you know where I can get rid of these things?”
And Louie the King said, “Let me think for a minute, son”
And he said, “Yes, I think it can be easily done
Just take everything down to Highway 61”
Now, the fifth daughter on the twelfth night
Told the first father that things weren’t right
“My complexion”, she says, “Is much too white”
He said, “Come here and step into the light”
He says, “Hmm, you’re right”
“Let me tell the second mother, this has been done”
But the second mother was with the seventh son
And they were both out on Highway 61
Now, the rovin’ gambler, he was very bored
Tryin’ to create a next world war
He found a promoter who nearly fell off the floor
He said, “I never engaged in this kind of thing before
But yes, I think it can be very easily done”
“We’ll just put some bleachers out in the sun
And have it on Highway 61”