His blues shows have appeared throughout the world. He coordinated an
annual blues festival in April called "Little Jeno's Birthday Bash,"
which has become a favorite event in the Mississippi Delta.
Little Jeno was born Jeno Leroy Tucker on April 10, 1941, in Bolton, MS.
His mother taught him to play piano in the church. He picked up the
harmonica at an early age and learned to play it alongside his father,
Duke Tucker, who played fiddle in the juke joints of the area. When he
was seven, he made a sensation by going to the Alamo Theatre in Jackson
and entering the talent show there. The band leader was blues harpist Sam
Meyers. Jeno decided to sing and was a hit. Sam took him under his
wing, and his lead guitar player showed him how to play guitar. Later he
started his first band playing guitar Jimmie Reed style. He also learned
to play the saxophone.
It was in the Mississippi Delta that Little Jeno's famous productions took
seed. Working with blues legends Frank Frost, Sam Carr, and Big Jack
Johnson he produced some of the most dazzling shows seen in modern day
blues. Known as "Jeno's All Stars," many of his musicians went on to
lead stellar musical careers, such as Lonnie Shields, James "Super Chikan"
Johnson, and others. He coordinated a popular Delta festival "Little
Jeno's Birthday Bash" which takes place every April in the Clarksdale,
Jeno's latest production was a group of Mr. Johnnie's and Dr. Mike's
graduate students, including Anthony Sherard, Charles Hooper, Lee
Williams, and his son, Artrell Earl, in a band called "J.T. Express."
Information by John Ruskey