Happy Spring! Surf’s up with Impala, Cedric’s blues and the hazards of… shopping!

Rock the Equinox with a debut story collection, Memphis noir rock and the blues of Cedric Burnside!

March 20, 2021 at 7 pm (CT) Mississippi Public Broadcasting; 9 pm (CT) Alabama Public Radio; 3 pm (ET) University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Thursdays 6 pm (CT) University of Mississippi; Fridays 9 am (CT) WYXR Memphis Community Radio

On this first day of spring 2021, The Thacker Mountain Radio Hour welcomes Grammy-nominated blues musician Cedric Burnside (“Benton County Relic”) with Memphis garage-surf combo, Impala (“In the Late Hours”) and debut short story author Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah (“Friday Black”).

This show originally aired on Nov. 8, 2018 from our broadcast home, Off Square Books.  We miss our live audience and hope to resume live shows soon!

Hosts: Jim Dees and our house band, the Yalobushwhackers

Air times:

Saturday, March 20 – 7pm (CT) Mississippi Public Broadcasting

9pm (CT) Alabama Public Radio

3pm (ET) University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Thursdays 6pm (CT) WUMS – University of Mississippi

Fridays 9am (CT) WYXR Memphis Community Radio



Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah

Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah is the author of the story collection, Friday Black (Mariner Books). A piercingly raw debut story collection from a young writer with an explosive voice; a treacherously surreal, and, at times, heartbreakingly satirical look at what it’s like to be young and black in America. These stories tackle urgent instances of racism and cultural unrest, and explore the many ways we fight for humanity in an unforgiving world.

“The wildly talented Adjei-Brenyah has made these edgy tales immensely charming, via his resolute, heartful, immensely likeable narrators, capable of seeing the world as blessed and cursed at once.” — George Saunders


Cedric Burnside

Cedric Burnside is a Grammy-nominated blues musician who was born and raised near Holly Springs, Mississippi. His latest CD is Benton County Relic (Single Lock Records). The album includes the gritty single “We Made It,” a matter-of-fact recitation of Burnside’s poverty-stricken childhood without running water, radio or TV (“I come from nothin’/I done been lower than low/I keep my head straight/No matter how low I go”).

Cedric is the grandson of the legendary R.L. Burnside and son of drummer Calvin Jackson. He is a four-time winner of the prestigious Blues Music Award’s Drummer of the Year (2010-2014) and is widely regarded as one of the best drummers in the world. He is also an accomplished guitarist and vocalist.

His previous CD, Descendants of Hill Country was nominated for the Grammy as the Best Blues Album of 2016. His previous CDs include, Hear Me When I Say, and Take Me As I Am.

In addition to his musical career, Burnside has acted in the films, Black Snake Moan and Big Bad Love. He plays the lead in the just-released, Texas Red.

Filmmaker turns fascination with Mississippi culture into feature films (wlbt.com)


Impala was a surf rock/garage band formed in Memphis, TN in the early 1990s. Their first LP, El Rancho Reverbo, was co-produced by the legendary Roland Janes (Jerry Lee Lewis’ guitar player) at Sam Phillips Recording Service. They also released the anthology Night Full of Sirens, on bassist Scott Bomar’s label, Electraphonic, in 2006.

After a decade plus hiatus, Impala has re-formed for a series of gigs and has released In the Late Hours (Electraphonic). The album includes ten guitar and sax-driven R&B songs, inspired by the golden era of Memphis music when rockabilly, rhythm and blues, jazz, garage and soul music collided. These songs channel potent ghosts- Packy Axton, Willie Mitchell and Ike Turner, all pioneers of Memphis’ instrumental scene – while grooving with modern drive.