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A contemporary blues combo resurrecting the vintage Chicago sound of the 1950s, Mississippi Heat was formed in the Windy City in 1992 by vocalist/drummer Robert Covington, harpist Pierre Lacocque, guitarists Billy Flynn and James Wheeler, and bassist Bob Stroger.
While remaining a fixture of the local club circuit, the band's lineup remained in flux in the years to follow; Covington exited in 1993, and was replaced by vocalist Deitra Farr and drummer Allen Kirk in time to record their debut LP Straight From the Heart. Learned the Hard Way followed in 1994, with Thunder in My Heart appearing a year later; both Farr and Kirk exited in 1996, and in 1997 Mississippi Heat welcomed vocalists Mary Lane and Zora Young, pianist Barrelhouse Chuck and drummer Kenny Smith. The group's initial albums were released by Van der Linden Recordings, including 1993's Straight from the Heart, 1994's Learned the Hard Way, 1995's Thunder in My Heart and 1999's Handyman, after which they switched to Crosscut Records, issuing 2002's Footprints on the Ceiling and 2005's Glad You're Mine before moving on to Delmark Records for 2005's One Eye Open and 2008's Hattiesburg Blues. ~ Jason Ankeny
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