The 100 Men Hall is a federal 501c3 nonprofit and received grants from the Mississippi Gulf Coast National Heritage Area and the Coast Electric Round Up to create a cottage where artist could be in residence at the 100 Men Hall. The grants allowed the 100 Men Hall to complete furnishing the cottage on the property as an accommodation for musicians when they play the Hall. The cottage would also serve as an inspiring pied a terre for artists in need of a creative environment in which to hone their craft. (The "woodshed" of jazz legend.)
As the birthplace of a unique blues, R&B, and jazz groove, this National Heritage Area and Hall drew on the musical genius of the Mississippi Delta and the Hill Country to forge a unique and original form of music (especially when it married the modern sounds coming from New Orleans). For African American musicians on the chitlin circuit, places like the 100 Men Hall fed their talent and their bellies. At the same time their music helped replenish the funds that took care of a community in need.
The Hall continues the historical (almost "sacred") tradition of presenting live music. The Residency Project is designed to offer artists a welcoming and supportive place to stretch out, to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, and learn more about their musical ancestors. The Hall could function either as a rehearsal/recording room or a live performance space for musicians working on upping their game.
The Hall is hosting day residencies until the Residential Permit is received.
Bay Saint Louis has a significant African American landmark and one of the rare standing buildings on the Mississippi Blues Trail in the 100 Men Hall. The residential permit would allow the 100 Men Hall to invite artists from around the world to showcase this architectural and historical gem, which would increase national and international awareness and tourism to Bay Saint Louis and enhance the community of music and art lovers – and the city as a whole - who reside here.
Photo credit: Ann Madden Photography