Gettin’ the Blues at the Poor Monkey Lounge Ain’t Easy

Gettin’ the Blues at the Poor Monkey Lounge Ain’t Easy

poor-monkey-lounge, Mississippi

You see, just finding the Poor Monkey Lounge isn’t easy. I asked directions from an older gentleman wearing bib overalls and a straw hat as he walked down the shady side of First Street in tiny (pop 428), downtown Merigold, MS. “You ain’t from around here are you,” he responded, with a squint and just a bit of disdain. His face brightened slightly as he proceeded to give me directions. I got lost anyway.

Po’ Monkey’s sits on the edge of a cotton field, on a gravel farm road, just a few miles west of Merigold in Bolivar County. This is Mississippi Delta Blues Country and Po’ Monkey’s is a must stop for any blues aficionado traveling the Highway 61 Blues Trail. Originally a sharecropper’s house dating from the1920s, the Poor Monkey Lounge was opened in 1963 by Willie Seaberry. It is the only rural juke joint left in the Delta. You can count on Po’ Monkey’s to be open around 8:30 every Thursday with the music and dancing continuing until the wee hours of Friday morning. Many folks in the Delta believe the weekend starts then.

Sadly, Willie Seaberry passed away earlier this year and the fate of Po’ Monkey’s is anything but certain. But the blues will live on. That is certain.

Poor Monkey Lounge

Every bad situation is a blues song waiting to happen.

___Amy Winehouse

Ron Mayhew

Fine Art Photographer specializing in Still Life and Commercial Photography.

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Love all the signage, great photo collage

    1. It’s a place where you can get your blues on for sure. Thanks Mari

  2. This is where the magic happens…intimately.

    1. Indeed, and for many, many years. Thanks, Stacy.

  3. I almost dropped the laptop! You’re in my the stomping grounds of my childhood! I have a scar on my leg from climbing the (shhhhh) Merigold water tower when I was in high school… a friend lived a short distance from tower, so over the fence we went one night and up to the top.. wow, such a great panaromic view of those Delta flatlands!

    Are you in the flatlands now or was this from an earlier visit?


    1. I knew you were from the Delta, just not where exactly. What childhood memories. Have you been to Po’ Monkey’s? We drove the Blues Trail from Memphis to New Orleans a few years ago. Great trip!

    1. Thank you so much. I am enjoying experimenting with compositing.

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