March 26, 2012
Willie Nix was an innovative drummer and gifted lyricist as well as vocalist, and was an integral part of Memphis’s Beale Street blues community during the late forties and early fifties. Nix originally began performing as a tap-dancer when he was very young — his creative sense of rhythm as a drummer likely had its roots in his instincts as a dancer. Nix recorded and played in both Memphis and Chicago, and worked with legendary bluesmen in both cities, among them Junior Parker, B.B. King, Elmore James, Sonny Boy Williamson II, and Bobby Blue Bland. Nix eventually moved back to Memphis and continued to be a local fixture in the blues community. He performed on and off until his death in 1991.