Wednesday, August 17


Mock-up of the marker to be installed in Rosedale, MS.
Image courtesy of MS Blues Commission.

Mississippi Delta hot tamales are to appear on a Mississippi Blues Trail marker that will speak to iconic bluesman Robert Johnson's influences in and around the town of Rosedale. The marker ceremony will be held on Friday, August 26, in front of Joe's Hot Tamale Place in Rosedale, a stop on the SFA's Mississippi Delta Hot Tamale Trail.

We have a Tamales & Music section on the Tamale Trail that talks about this connection and features the lyrics to Robert Johnson's 1936 song "They're Red Hot":
Hot tamales and they're red hot, yes she got'em for sale
Hot tamales and they're red hot, yes she got'em for sale
She got two for a nickel, got four for a dime
Would sell you more, but they ain't none of mine
Hot tamales and they're red hot, yes she got'em for sale, I mean
Yes, she got'em for sale, yes, yeah
The mission of the Mississippi Blues Commission is to "foster an appreciation of the Blues and the culture that created it." We're thrilled that the commission sees fit to include the Delta's rich culinary culture, tamales in particular, as part of the Blues Trail.

If you find yourself wandering the Delta next week, please join us in Rosedale on August 26 to help us celebrate. The ceremony is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. SFA oral historian Amy Evans Streeter will be in attendance--and likely eating her fair share of tamales.

POSTSCRIPT: Joe Pope of Joe's Hot Tamale Place passed away in December 2004 and was the inspiration for our Tamale Trail. Read the In Memoriam page that we created in his honor as we began collecting fieldwork for the project just a handful of months after his passing. Today, Joe's sister, Barbara Pope, carries on his tamale legacy.