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Flowers for Blind Blake’s Grave from Detroit Michigan

Hi Angie,

A few years ago, my oldest brother stumbled on an article from with your journal entries on finding Blind Blake’s grave. He sent it to me and told me to read it, which of course I did. Our dad raised him, me, and my other brother on the blues, so we have an attachment and respect for anything like this.

To make a very long story short, we did a Mississippi Blues Trail road trip last summer with our mom that took us from Tupelo to Indianola to Memphis to St. Louis, and we planned one for this past weekend in the Chicago area. We made a trek up to Milwaukee specifically to see Blind Blake’s grave. We were actually concerned that we weren’t going to make it in because the hours online said it was closed Saturday and Sunday (thankfully that was just the office hours).

We found it on Sunday tucked away in the back corner past the infant section, starting to get overgrown. But that was the reason we brought gardening tools on this trip. Like your journal says, that entire section is so hard to navigate. We cleaned it up and placed some flowers on top and were happy to see other trinkets have been left.

I attached the picture we took on Sunday; I thought you’d appreciate seeing it. I also wanted to thank you for your searching and dedication and the fact that you got him a headstone so blues fans can come and pay their respects. Honestly, if it wasn’t for you, your team, and your research, we wouldn’t have even gone to Milwaukee on this trip. It was definitely something special—and something I’m not going to forget anytime soon.


Christina Lazzara, Detroit Michigan

Poem: Voices

Voices” by Angela K. Mack © 1/6/09

I listen to VOICES for a living….

mainly, voices of inexperience

wanting to be heard yet lacking the depth


I listen to VOICES for a living…..

needs that want to be met

that chase me down and sap me


I listen to VOICES for a living…..

the arguing voice, the whining voice,

the voice of reason and seduction


But occasionally, very rare, I get to SPEAK.

My passions and my soul are GIVEN CONSIDERATION.

My words are dissected and analyzed by CURIOUS MINDS.

And once a year, I get to sing and be heard.

I get to write and be understood.

It is a great thing when one is listened to.

It is a great thing when expression is found by acceptance.

It is a great thing when the suppressed emotions are released in resounding strengths.

This is why I listen to VOICES for a living.

Do unto others as you want them to do for you……..”

Who’s In the #HOTSEAT Now?

Hot Seat Records

Franklin Releases EP on Hot Seat Records, Grafton WI

by Angie Mack Reilly

(Grafton, WI) Do you remember the Chernobyl nuclear disaster that catastrophically infused radioactive material into the atmosphere in 1986?

Denis Alfmistov (aka Franklin) was born just 60 miles from there in Gomel, Belarus in 1993. After the disaster, many families from the area slowly dispersed to avoid contamination.

With $100 to their name, Denis’ family left the state once occupied the communist Russia to seek a “better” life in the United States of America.

The family migrated to Brooklyn, New York with his father taking on a job in construction. Denis went to Seth Low Middle School and recalls he and his brother getting beat up by teen gangs on a regular basis. From what Denis describes, their life in Brooklyn was more than rough. The entire family suffered deeply. Denis describes all of them as being…

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