• Sucarnochee Revue welcomes UWA alum “Dr. Hook”

    Posted: January 11, 2011

    Author: Betsy Compton

    The Sucarnochee Revue returns to the University of West Alabama’s Bibb Graves Auditorium Friday, Jan. 14 at 7 p.m. for a live taping featuring UWA alumnus George Cummings of Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show. The syndicated show will air on public and commercial radio stations across the country and Mississippi Public Broadcasting television stations.

    A native of Meridian, Miss., Cummings played football and baseball at East Mississippi Community College before transferring to Livingston to focus on baseball. Cummings found fame as the leader of Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show, the group he co-founded in New Jersey in 1968. The group is best known for its hits “Sylvia’s Mother,” which sold a million copies in 1972, and “Cover of the Rolling Stone,” which climbed to number six on the U.S. pop charts.

    In 1975, Cummings moved from San Francisco to Nashville, where he collaborated on songs with guitar legend Lonnie Mack and Delta bluesman Big Joe Williams while performing with The Raven and other Nashville country and rock bands. While in Nashville, George co-wrote one of the biggest country novelty songs of all time, "Where's the Dress" by Moe Bandy and Joe Stampley.

    “We’re happy to bring George Cummings back to the Revue. He’s had incredible success as a singer/songwriter, and crowds love his style. George is an outstanding songwriter, and he’s sharing his talent by providing guidance to so many younger musicians,” said show host/producer Jacky Jack White.

    A second featured act is the Alan Sibley & the Magnolia Ramblers, a bluegrass band from Mississippi. Sibley began his career at the young age of 15 as a mandolin player for the legendary Sullivan Family. He has also traveled with the Larry Wallace Band and popular bluegrass gospel duo Jerry and Tammy Sullivan.

    Sibley’s band includes veteran guitarist Bo Collier, banjo player J.R. Willis, and bass player Mark Brown. The band’s repertoire consists of original pieces, gospel standards, traditional bluegrass songs, and instrumentals

    Black Belt Hall of Fame inductees Kathryn Tucker Windham and the late William James Edwards will also be honored during the taping. Both are Black Belt natives and have dedicated their lives’ work to the region, both for its advancement and preservation.

    Edwards was an educator and tireless reformer who worked to improve the lives of black tenant farmers in the Black Belt. He was founder and president of the Black Belt Improvement League, which was established for the promotion of agricultural work, home ownership, education and good health among African-Americans.

    Windham is a favorite storyteller, author, photographer, journalist and folklorist who shares the region’s culture with the nation through her art. She was born in Selma and raised in Thomasville, where she began writing at age 12. She is beloved by generations of school children for her book “13 Alabama Ghosts and Jeffrey.”

    Other artists on the bill for Friday’s show include Jacky Jack White; Mississippi Chris Sharp and the Jangalangs; J. Burton Fuller; Chris Etheridge; Jessica Strenth; and Britt Gulley.

    Presenting Black Belt regional music in its most authentic manner, the Revue has been honored by the Country Music Association for its continuing efforts to support the grassroots of country music. The show has also received recognition from the Black Belt Community Foundation and the Alabama State Council on the Arts.

    Sponsored by UWA’s Center for the Study of the Black Belt, the Sucarnochee Revue is a facet of the organization’s emphasis on folk arts. Now in its sixth year of production, the Revue also tapes the first Friday night of each month at the historic Temple Theatre in Meridian, Miss.

    Tickets are $8 at the door. For more information about the show, contact White at 205-499-9988 or visit www.jackyjack.com.

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