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April 4-6, 2025

Word of South

Preston Lauterbach

Preston Lauterbach is author of the American music classic The Chitlin’ Circuit (2011) as well as two secret histories of Black culture, Beale Street Dynasty (2015) and Bluff City (2019). Preston has co-authored three memoirs with significant figures in Black music, including Brother Robert (2020) with the stepsister of bluesman Robert Johnson, Timekeeper (2021) with Memphis soul drummer Howard Grimes, and the Blind Boys of Alabama biography Spirit of the Century, out in March 2024. His works have earned book of the year recognition from the Wall Street Journal, NPR, and Rolling Stone. He’ll be appearing with members of the Blind Boys of Alabama to discuss their biography at this year’s Word of South.