Music on St. Catherine Street
Papa George Lightfoot [1924-1971], he lived down the street from the alley I came up in, down on St. Catherine Street....He was a hustler, he had a snowball wagon, he sold peanuts. He would blow his harp while selling, and he would make some change from that as well.
That papa George was something, he was full of fun. He would clown, he'd blow his harp and put two sticks between his fingers and that's how he kept time. You'd hear that "clack, clack" in rhythm
with his playing. He had wooden slats, they looked like rulers.
Elmore Williams, Blues
"Soul Man Lee"
Jimmy Anderson was born in 1934 and known in Natchez as "Soul Man Lee," his deejay nickname. A harmonica player and vocalist, Anderson also played guitar. Anderson's first exposure to the blues was hearing Papa George Lightfoot on St. Catherine Street.
The businesses were mostly on St. Catherine Street, you had cafes and juke joints all the way up the street. You could come up St. Catherine and just about every joint you'd find somebody with a guitar. They'd be in there playing, at least on Fridays and Saturdays, and on Sundays they'd have a few joints open, but the rest of the
Elmore Williams, Blues
Musician, Guitarist , born 1933
Hezekiah Early was born in 1934. His early influences were local fife and drum groups with a fife player, two snare drums, and a bass player. Early took up the harmonica when he was about 13 after hearing Papa George Lightfoot playing along St. Catherine Street.
Y.Z. Ealey was born in 1937 and began playing guitar as a child. He recalls hearing local street musicians like Papa George Lightfoot and William "Cat Iron" Caradine. He also heard R&B on jukeboxes in businesses along St. Catherine Street.
"Lil Poochie" Watson, born in 1951, is a vocalist and guitarist who built his first guitar out of a board and fishing wire with nails as tuning pegs. Influenced bu St. Catherine Street musicians, he played at local clubs with different groups and toured with Hezekiah Early.
James Rowan (1926-2010) became interested in making music when he was a seventh-grade student at Brumfield School on St. Catherine Street. He tried 5 instruments before deciding to play the trumpet. Rowan served in the U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II and became a band director after graduation from Alcorn State University. Interspersed with his teaching career was his career as a jazz musician in various bands and a steady gig at the Under-the-Hill Saloon.
Rowan portrayed the role of Joe King Oliver in more than 100 performances on the musical Satchmo: America's Musical Legend.
Erected by City Of Natchez.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Natchez Trails marker series.
Location. 31° 33.399′ N, 91° 23.288′ W. Marker is in Natchez, Mississippi, in Adams County. Marker is on St. Catherine Street east of McCabe Street, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. St. Catherine is ONE WAY westbound at this location. Marker is in this post office area: Natchez MS 39120, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Papa Lightfoot & The Natchez Blues (within shouting distance of this marker); History of St. Catherine Street (approx. 0.2 miles away); Forks of the Road (approx. 0.2 miles away); Forks of the Road Historical Site (approx. ¼ mile away); Voss Family and A-B Motor Company (approx. half a mile away); Holy Family Church and School (approx. half a mile away); Holy Family Catholic Church (approx. half a mile away); Dr. John Banks House - 9 St. Catherine Street (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Natchez.
More about this marker. Part of the Natchez Trails "St. Catherine Street" walking tour.
Categories. • African Americans • Arts, Letters, Music • Roads & Vehicles •
Credits. This page was last revised on September 22, 2017. This page originally submitted on September 10, 2017, by Cajun Scrambler of Assumption, Louisiana. This page has been viewed 50 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on September 10, 2017.