The Blackwater Trio Travels, Rocks The Valley

As the Oxford Film Festival prepares to launch on Thursday, February 17, plans are being cemented to showcase literally hundreds of films – features, documentaries, shorts and music videos – for our consumption.

One alumni filmmaker, director Coop Cooper, is set to present a music video from the versatile Delta band, the Blackwater Trio, and their effort at the Clarksdale Film Festival last weekend (Saturday, January 30). The song Cooper filmed is titled The Happy Song and it is an apt descriptor of the dynamic Coahoma County band.

Over the past couple of months, HottyToddy.com has casually featured a ton of filmmakers, films and filmmaking alumni who will be present at OFF this year. In one of those features, packed in with several other OFF alumni, was a mention of Cooper and his upcoming Blackwater Trio music video. As with many readers (I’d imagine), the post was read and comprehended but not given much though beyond that initial glance.

Blackwater Trio performs in Water Valley on Saturday, January 30, 2016. Photo by Jeff McVay
Blackwater Trio performs in Water Valley on Saturday, January 30, 2016.
Photo by Jeff McVay

I’m embarrassed to say that justice was not served to this amazing trio of musicians by that casual, matter-of-fact post.

Just imagine a blend of Bowie, Led Zeppelin, America (yep, that’s right), Cowboy Mouth, Mott the Hoople and perhaps scatter in a dusting of The Eagles and Neil Young and you’ll get a general idea of what the trio dynamically brings to the table.

Now, I’m no Coop Cooper but I do occasionally land in situations that might be considered “right place/right time” and Saturday evening in Water Valley was one of those occasions (where thankfully, I happened to have my iPhone in hand – actually it was Belinda Beason’s but who’s keeping up?)

Dr. Kim (left) and Belinda Beason prepare for the Blackwater Trio in Water Valley Mississippi on Saturday night. Thanks for the use of your phone, Mrs. Beason. Photo by Jeff McVay
Dr. Kim (left) and Belinda Beason prepare for the Blackwater Trio in Water Valley Mississippi on Saturday night. Thanks for the use of your phone, Mrs. Beason.
Photo by Jeff McVay

The Blackwater Trio was the featured entertainment (the electric set I believe it was called) at Water Valley resident Kevin Guyer’s private weekly music gathering titled Grab Bag. Somehow Guyer managed to coerce the Blackwater Trio to make the winding trek from the Clarksdale Film Festival to Water Valley’s outer edge – and the results were unconditionally cool.

The Blackwater Trio members consist of Seth Stroud (guitar/lead vocals), Walt Busby (lead guitar/vocals) and Alice Hasen (violin/vocals).

seth straud

Alice Hasen Photo courtesy of blackwatertrio.com
Alice Hasen
Photo courtesy of blackwatertrio.com

Walt Busby Photo courtesy of blackwatertrio.com
Walt Busby
Photo courtesy of blackwatertrio.com

Alice Hasen and Seth Stroud of the Blackwater Trio. Photo by Jeff McVay
Alice Hasen and Seth Stroud of the Blackwater Trio.
Photo by Jeff McVay

Seth Stroud and Walt Busby of the Blackwater Trio. Photo by Jeff McVay
Seth Stroud and Walt Busby of the Blackwater Trio.
Photo by Jeff McVay

Give the attached/embedded videos (top and below) a listen and I guarantee you, a trip to Malco Oxford Commons will be penned in your calendar for OFF later this month.

Blackwater Trio’s The Happy Song and many other featured music videos will be played at a public film fest party at the Round Table on the Oxford Square Friday, February 19. The festivities, scheduled from 6-9 p.m., will feature live entertainment by Tate Moore and barbecue will be served to all in attendance. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased via OxfordFilmFestival.com

For more information about Blackwater Trio, visit their Facebook page or BlackwaterTrio.com

The 2016 Oxford Film Festival will take place February 17-21 and will be held predominantly at Malco Oxford Commons. Leading to the festival’s kickoff on February 17, check HottyToddy.com for other features and what to expect at the popular festival.

Seth Stroud of the Blackwater Trio. Photo by Jeff McVay
Seth Stroud of the Blackwater Trio.
Photo by Jeff McVay

Alice Hasen of the Blackwater Trio. Photo by Jeff McVay
Alice Hasen of the Blackwater Trio.
Photo by Jeff McVay


Jeff McVay is a staff writer and graphic designer for Hottytoddy.com. He can be reached at jeff.mcvay@hottytoddy.com.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Excellent article on a band filled with outstanding musicians. I was blown away by their performance that you have covered in this piece and by their music video featured at the Film Festival in Clarksdale last weekend.

  2. JB is so right! Great band, great performance, great video. We all need to see more of these folks. Thanks so much for the excellent story, Jeff!

  3. Hey Jeff. … Thanks for your great coverage on The Blackwater Trio show! They put on an amazing performance the other night in Water Valley (Velma). The way this group blends their original music with such great influences (Bowie, Zeppelin, and I heard some Nickel Creek) is remarkable. I think one day after they’ve hit the big time we’ll all say “Remember when we heard them at that show in Water Valley!” Thanks again and we’ll all be keeping an eye on The Blackwater Trio!

  4. The first time I heard them I knew they were going to be a band I’d get to brag about seeing before they “blew up.” The second time I saw them, they played “Devil Went Down To Georgia.” When it came time for Alice to play the Devil’s solo, they busted into Led Zepplin’s “Kashmir,” and crushed it. Thanks for helping to get the word out, Jeff. Also, if you know somebody who knows Kevin, get on his list. He produces some phenomenal shows!

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