June 2 memorial will honor CH's Bill "Mr. Stress" Miller
Colin Dussault, musician and friend to Bill "Mr. Stress" Miller, is planning a memorial to the Cleveland blues legend who died on May 19 at his Musicians Towers apartment in Cleveland Heights.
Born in Cleveland in 1943, Miller went on to become a legendary bluesman and harmonica player.
"We are planning a memorial for him to be held on Tuesday, June 2, at the Euclid Tavern, 6–10 p.m.," said Dussault in an e-mail. "I anticipate a standing-room-only crowd to be on hand as myriad musicians join together to 'play their respects' to this beloved music icon."
Dussault has commissioned a black granite memorial plaque, to honor Miller's legacy. "I am in active conversations with the Rock Hall and owners of the building that houses the Euclid Tavern about having the plaque permanently affixed to one of those two edifices to honor him," said Dussault.
James Henke wrote about Miller—and Dussault's efforts to help the musician in 2014, when Miller was simultaneously recovering from a stroke and being threatened with eviction from his Lakewood apartment—in the May 2014 issue of the Heights Observer ["Blues legend returns to the Heights"].
Miller's 2014 move to the Cleveland Heights apartment was a return to the city he had called home decades earlier. He once lived on Cadwell Avenue, and, in James Henke's article, recalled "hanging out" in Coventry in the 1960s and '70s, where one of his regular haunts was Tommy's restaurant. "I went to his restaurant so much," Miller told Henke, "they named a sandwich after me." Tommy's tribute to Miller, the Mr. Stress sandwich, is a BLT with peanut butter, mayonnaise and American cheese, on white bread.
Kim Sergio Inglis
Kim Sergio Inglis is editor-in-chief of the Heights Observer. She lives in the Shaker Farm Historic District in Cleveland Heights.