Mackey is being inducted into the Northern Kentucky Musical History and Hall of Fame! The induction ceremony will be held in late May, there will be an exhibit running at the Behringer Crawford Museum all through the summer, and concerts at the museum all summer.
Bobby Mackey's Music World is celebrating almost 35 years as Greater Cincinnati’s top country music night spot featuring Bobby and the Big Mac Band every Friday and Saturday night. Mackey bought the joint from 3 gentleman in 1978. I had to ask, and no...there was no disclosure of ghosts. Mackey isn't interested in the paranormal. "I don't believe in it. Carl Lawson who worked for us noticed it. He was just a kid, lived down the street. We were preparing to get the club ready and Carl started telling me you wouldn't believe the weird things that are happening. I just turned a deaf ear, I didn't want to know anyway. Then my wife Janet, she passed four years ago, she would tell me things that was going on. I thought Carl put that in her head. But I don't know...I know that it peaked people's interest. But it's not my thing. Even if it is haunted, I don't care. I am only interested in the music business. I was not even interested in the being in the bar business to be honest, I only care about the music."
Mackey has had music bubbling through his veins since birth. "Out of everything in my life, music has always meant the most." Beginning as a small child singing along with the jukebox in his father's grocery store. He picked up the guitar at the age of 4, learning the songs of his first favorite country musician, Hank Williams Sr. His oldest brother gave him the Roy Robinson guitar (that he still owns) and history was in the making. Mackey moved north from his hometown of Lewistown, KY after high school to Covington in order to work on the railroad but music was always his first priority. He attended jam sessions on Sundays at local bars. Someone told Red Jenkins about Mackey..."and it was a perfect fit. I had never met any of the guys before. Red called me and asked me to be at this club. I showed up with my guitar and I like to say that we shook hands and ended up playing music." They ended up playing at clubs such as The Apple in Woodland, Boulevard in Springdale, and The Chuck Inn in Highland Heights. They played out for over an 8 yr span and then Mackey decided to get his own club. He found the place in Wilder that fit the bill and 34 years later here we are...
Mackey is not a fan of new country, "Give me the Grand Ole Opry guys any day. Conway Twitty, George Jones and Hank Sr., there is just no melody to the new stuff. I appreciate them for what they do but it's not my thing."
What advice does Mackey have for new artists?
"Just be yourself. I know it would be hard for a new artist to not do new music and I have even given this advise to new talent. Such as John Morgan, he is a great talent. I told him to do the new music but slip in the older stuff and I don't think anyone is going to run you off for it. But...I have my own place to play and don’t have to worry about booking."
Make sure you come spend your afternoon with Bobby Mackey at the Cincinnati Public Library. He is going to bring his acoustic guitar, play some songs and tell some stories. You'll not want to miss history being made.