02/16/2012 08:25 am ET

First National Blues Museum Set To Open In St. Louis

Many a blues legend were bred from or have paid homage to St. Louis, Missouri. Chuck Berry hailed from St. Louis while others, such as W.C. Handy, wrote about the city. So it only makes sense that the first National Blues Museum will be built there.

Depending on the final design, the national museum dedicated to the genre will be opened in St. Louis next year. Museum chairman Rob Endicott told Reuters.

The museum is a part of the city of St. Louis' riverfront revitalization focused on drawing traffic to the Downtown area. Included in the $500 million "Gateway Arch park rehabilitation" is the construction of retail and residential space, a hotel, movie theater, restaurants, and the museum.

Though the genre has a long, storied history Endicott said the space will be tech-heavy, focusing on an interactive experience with artifact and memorabilia-driven exhibits. Site renderings on the museum's website shows a "Blues Lab" where visitors can record and jam with what looks like holograms of their favorite musicians.

The main page of the site states, "The Blues is not a melody. It's not a chord. Or a beat. Or a rhythm. Or a tone. The Blues is a state of mind. It's the human condition. The Blues is a way of life. And should be preserved as such."

Now, in honor of legends from across the nation, here's a slideshow of some of our favorite blues musicians to grace this country: