Circuit’s Soundtrack

gabrielle chaisson staff A song list made up of 10 notable Chitlin’ Circuit artists from the ’50s and ’60s and their highest-rated Billboard R&B hits, which tracked the success of Black artists among Black audiences. Billboard charts have measured radio sales and jukebox successes since the 1940s. The “Race Records” chart highlighted music targeted at […]

Louisiana Native Chitlin’ Circuit Performers

“No other place has contributed a richer heritage of pop music to the rest of the United States, from Dixieland [jazz] to rock n’ roll to contemporary jazz.” Grace Lichtenstein and Laura Dankner, in their book “Musical Gumbo: The Music of New Orleans.” sarah kraemer features editor Louisiana and its towns are home to many […]

The Chitlin’ Circuit: a Foundation for Current Musicians

carlie dalgo staff One thing people all share in common is their ability to communicate through music. The harmonies ringing from a group of singers, the bass line thumping, the pounding beat of the drum – it’s all a universal language.  While the Chitlin’ Circuit gave Black musicians a platform to express themselves during segregation, […]

The Sounds of Thibodaux

sally-anne torres staff Filled with the sounds of blues, rock ‘n’ roll, jazz and more, Thibodaux was the perfect stop for roaming musicians and entertainers traveling along the Chitlin’ Circuit. James Brown James Brown, originally from Georgia, was a significant figure on the Chitlin’ Circuit, according to Scott Barretta, music historian for the Mississippi Blues […]

The Music, History, and Inspiration of the Chitlin’ Circuit

jaci remondet staff A vibrant soundtrack of soulful music plays within the walls of juke joints and dance halls that make up the Chitlin Circuit.  The cords play sounds of pain, joy, challenges and resilience, but these melodies are not just confined to that time and within those walls. The musical roots stem deep into […]

It Takes A Village: Hosea Hill, Frank Painia and Deacon John Moore

gabrielle chaisson staff The Chitlin’ Circuit was more than a gig or a venue—it allowed Black musicians and entrepreneurs to succeed in the Jim Crow era. “In the region, there was a pretty elaborate network of educated musical people in the Black community and the music gravitated from them.” Tommy Lyons, Musician But at the […]

Getting on the Chitlin’ Circuit

skylar neal staff Musicians like Tina Turner, Jimi Hendrix, Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitsgerald and Sam Cooke made their debut on the Chitlin’ Circuit.  “You really had to play, ‘cause those people were really hard to please… That’s where I learned to play, really, in Nashville [on the Chitlin Circuit],” Hendrix says in a 1967 interview […]