Posted: November 28, 2013
Memphis Bluesman Jeff Jensen, who has played regularly in Beale Street blues clubs over the past several years, surprised the staff of the Blues Foundation by presenting 1,000 one dollar bills, which he collected over the past year in tips while playing on Beale Street, as a donation to the Foundation’s “Raise the Roof” Campaign for the Blues Hall of Fame. Jensen said his donation was prompted by his love of the blues: “I make my living playing blues music and have for almost 10 years now. It is way more than a job, it truly is a calling. I try my hardest to make people’s lives better through my music. So when I heard the slogan “If not now, when? If not us, who?” it really hit me. That “us” is me. I started thinking about what can I really do, and realized that the tip bucket was the place to start.“
Jay Sieleman, President / CEO of the Blues Foundation, said “Memphis is known as ‘The Home of the Blues,’ and it’s wonderful that one of the musicians who is currently playing blues in Memphis is being so generous in paying homage to whose created and grew this uniquely American music.”
The goal of the Blues Foundation in building the Blues Hall of Fame is to create a memorable experience for the visitor that presents the rich history of blues music through recognition and respect for the men and women who created this music, while also spotlighting The Blues Foundation programs that ensure the future of one of the great cultural contributions to the world: blues music. Since 1980, The Blues Foundation has inducted individuals, recordings, and literature into the Blues Hall of Fame. The induction included a public announcement, an induction dinner and ceremony, and a printed program; more recently, it also included postings to The Blues Foundation’s website. The Blues Hall of Fame museum will pay respect to the men, women and recordings deemed the greatest of this musical genre, one of the world’s great cultural art forms.
Jensen saved this money over the past year, setting aside dollar bills he received as tips from each performance on Beale Street and has just reached his goal of saving $1,000 for the donation. Jensen has also recently released a CD of his music, “Roadworn and Ragged,” which has received critical acclaim.
The Blues Foundation has raised almost 75% of the funds needed to open the Blues Hall of Fame which it hopes to open in 2014.
For more information on Jeff Jensen go to www.jjblues.com. For more information on The Blues Foundation and the Raise the Roof! Campaign for the Blues Hall of Fame, please go to www.blues.org or visit the Blues Foundation at 421 South Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103
To read Jeff's full story please visit: jeffjensenband.com/raise-the-roof
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