Punk pioneer Patti Smith gets full Memphis experience

Punk rock pioneer Patti Smith spent her Friday evening eating barbecue at the famous Rendezvous restaurant. She woke up Saturday morning and toured Graceland.

And as if her visit couldn't get any more Memphis-y, she spent the afternoon singing to a mud-splattered crowd at the Beale Street Music Festival.

"I was very moved to see the home of someone who gave us so much and helped to revolutionize music and create rock and roll," Smith told the audience of her visit to Elvis Presley's home.

Day two of the Memphis in May International Festival started with local bands Star and Micey on the FedEx Stage and Fuzzy Jeffries & the Kings of Memphis in the festival's driest location, the Horseshoe Casino Blues Tent.

After Friday's early evening deluge followed by a cold front, early arrivals on Saturday appeared to have learned a lesson and come bundled in additional layers.

Downtown resident Kelli Martin -- who made more than one trip back home for more clothing -- said that the cold may have also helped mellow out the crowd.

"They were rowdy, but not obnoxiously rowdy," she said. "Overall, music fest is good this year. I like that they have locker rentals now, but I don't like that if you do re-entry to the park, you have to use either the North or the South gates. Most people park somewhere in the middle, and it's a long walk to either end. They should have re-entry at the Butler Street entrance."

Blue skies and sunshine appeared toward the end of Jerry Lee Lewis' ever-popular set of classic Sun Studio rock, around 6:40 p.m. "The Killer" was followed by another Memphis legend, Stax recording artist Mavis Staples.

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