The Music of Mississippi: Three Moments of History to Delve Into at Three Rooftop Bars

All you need to know.

September 29, 2023

From blues and country to gospel and rock ‘n’ roll and beyond, Mississippi has produced some phenomenal genres of music over the years, which have spread around the world. But it is still the blues that Mississippi is most associated with.

Fans from all over the globe visit Mississippi each year to soak up the state’s rich musical heritage. And there are plenty of venues and bars, including rooftop bars, where you can delve into iconic moments of Mississippi music.

Three Moments of Mississippi Music History

There are so many iconic moments in the history of Mississippi that we could delve into, that it would be impossible to mention them all in one sitting. Yes, Mississippi’s music has that much historical significance.

But by visiting places like the Grammy Museum Mississippi, the Gateway to the Blues Museum and Visitors Center, and the B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center, you can learn a lot more about Mississippi’s musical heritage.

You can begin to experience the melodies of Mississippi on and start to plan your trip.

In the meantime, here are three famous moments from the history of Mississippi music.

1. The Crossroads Encounter

Born in Hazlehurst, Mississippi, in 1911, Robert Johnson rose to become one of the leading figures in early Delta blues music. Johnson is considered to be one of the all-time great musicians.

However, his talent may not have been all of his own, as according to legend, he sold his soul to the devil at a crossroads in Clarksdale, Mississippi for unparalleled mastery of guitar-playing and songwriting.

Whether myth or fact, Johnson’s crossroads encounter has gone down as one of the most famous moments in Mississippi music history.

2. B.B. King’s Arrival in Memphis

You probably know that B.B. King was one of the key figures in the development of blues music. He helped to take the genre from the Mississippi Delta to the masses.

King arrived in Memphis in 1946. With other musicians, he played the blues on Beale Street, and it was not long before the music style took over the city. Even though Chicago later took the name of “Home of the Blues”, Memphis had the nickname first.

3. The Birth of Elvis Presley

Undoubtedly, one of the most important moments in the history of Mississippi music was the birth of The King, Elvis Presley.

The undisputed King of rock ‘n’ roll was born in the city of Tupelo. Today, visitors from all over the world still visit Tupelo to see where Elvis grew up.

Three Rooftop Bars to Visit in Mississippi

Now let us look at three rooftop bars that you are sure to want to visit in Mississippi.

1. Hyatt Centric

From the beautiful rooftop at the Hyatt Centric boutique hotel, you can drift back in time to the birth of the blues, as the hotel is located on Memphis’ famous Beale Street.

You can sample fine food or simply enjoy some high-end whiskey while watching Hernando DeSoto Bridge’s twinkling lights in the distance.

Plus, there is live music on the rooftop twice a week.

2. Park Heights Restaurant

The rooftop bar at Park Heights Restaurant is definitely worth a visit if you are visiting Tupelo, the birthplace of Elvis.

There is a gorgeous view over downtown Tupelo and Fair Park. Furthermore, the bar has an amazing wine list.

3. Buoys Bar

You can listen to the old songs of Robert Johnson at various rooftop bars in Mississippi. At Buoys Bar, you can also enjoy live music on some nights.

Located in Saint Louis, the nautically-themed bar is on the waterfront, so it is the perfect place to watch the rolling waves of the ocean.

Also, Buoys Bar has a great selection of beers.

Other Great Rooftop Bars in Mississippi

As a music fan, you might like to visit some of the Mississippi bars with historical links that do not have rooftops, such as Club Ebony in Indianola, which is a venue that dates from the 1940s and was later owned by B.B. King, or Po’ Monkey’s in Merigold, which is one of the last remaining authentic juke joints in the south.

There are also multiple other rooftop bars throughout Mississippi that you might like to explore. Some of the best are:

- White House Hotel in Biloxi.

- 10 South Rooftop Bar & Grill in Vicksburg.

- Rooftop Taco & Tequila Bar in Ocean Springs.

- Hot Tin in New Orleans.

- The Coop at the Graduate Oxford Hotel in Oxford.