The Arkansas delta’s rich musical and cultural heritage is often overshadowed by the Mississippi delta. Yet as Jimmy Cunningham Jr. and Donna Cunningham note in their book Delta Music and Film: Jefferson County and the Lowlands, published by Arcadia, the Arkansas delta has much to be proud of. One of its favorite sons is bluesman “Big Bill” Broonzy. Born near Altheimer and raised in Pine Bluff, Broonzy was one of the leading figures in the blues between the late 1920s and early 1940s. He was among the first class of Blues Hall of Fame inductees, a Grammy nominee, and the first bluesman to have a biography published. He is credited with bringing blues music to Europe and counts among the people he influenced the Rolling Stones and the Beatles.
Big Bill Broonzy
By John Kirk • Jan 31, 2017