Music from "the Mines"



THE OLDEST BLUES CLUB
ON THE NORTH SIDE OF CHICAGO



Carl Weathersby is a regular musician at Kingston Mines who enchants the crowd with his soul music.




The owner and founder of Kingston Mines is pushing 90 now, but still lives above the bar and comes down in his wheelchair to join the fun.


Lenin "Doc" Pellegrino founded the Mines in the '60s, while he was still a practicing physician on the West Side. He talked about opening an interracial club during the civil rights era, his civil rights work, WWII combat experience and his feelings about the blues.




"Don't let the basards grind you down."

"Go rub your knuckles in shit, sir."

"Things should be somewhat better when you leave than they were when you come in."

"I had all black musicians."

"It is [a music] that has aspirations for things to get better and a willingness to fight for that."



TWO STAGES, TWO BANDS TILL 4 A.M.

Joanna Connor



"I have traveled a lot and blues clubs for the most part didn't attract anyone under 35, and that is why so many of them have closed. I would say 50 to 60 percent of the clubs I used to play at are gone."

-Joanna Connor, Musician

Carl Weathersby



"Reaganomics put us out of work."


"It's about what you see everyday."


"You do a performance and make them forget their problems."


"This place is a cross section of every kind of person," said Joanna Connor.



Silas McClatcher is a regular at Kingston Mines.

Julius Townes, bouncer

Meghan Gray compares Kingston Mines to another Chicago blues bar.

Ron Anderson and his wife are big fans of the blues. This was their first time at Kingston Mines.



Content and design by Ananth Baliga, Olivia Sorrel-Dejerine, Paige Sutherland and Laurel White. MEDILL.