Johnny Vidacovich's road to recovery
In a city laden with renowned drummers, Vidacovich is iconic. As a boy, older musicians picked him up "to go play music" -- labels, he thus learned, were best ignored. His animated, idiosyncratic style is rooted in New Orleans street beats, but is highly adaptable and expressive.
He's ignited stages around the globe and appeared on more than 250 recordings. His modern jazz ensemble Astral Project, founded in 1978, released its sixth studio album, "Blue Streak," during the 2008 Jazzfest.
His influence extends deep into the next generation. Galactic's Stanton Moore, World Leader Pretend's Arthur Mintz and jazz-funk-hip-hop drummer Kevin O'Day all studied in his house. Former student Brian Blade -- whose credits include Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Norah Jones and Wayne Shorter -- adorns the July cover of Modern Drummer magazine and cites Vidacovich's influence in the accompanying interview.
Rebirth Brass Band | 06.13 | SF
Chris Rose: 60-Second Interview with Carlo Nuccio
Looking out from the stage the crowd looked like a sea of peopleSomething Else's: New Orleans singing legend Aaron Neville
hypnotized by the power of the Soul Rebels music. They had never seen
anything like it before. The head music critic in the country came up
to us after the show almost in tears and speechless to tell us it was
the most incredible music he has ever seen come to Greece. In a time
when it seems the world is falling apart and people don't know what to
think of Americans anymore, it meant so much when Winston (the
trombone player) said to the crowd at the end of the concert, "We wish
you peace from New Orleans and peace from the U.S.A." We left the
stage with peace symbols in the air as the whole crowd chanted "Soul
Rebels, Soul Rebels, Soul Rebels...."
"We don't argue any more than any other family," Neville says. "The worst it might be is over the order of songs on the set list." They still travel together, in one configuration or another. They are also still growing together, this time toward the Lord.
"Good stuff — especially if you like to get down and a little funky with a New Orleans legend."
Music from Basin Street
Listen to this weeks musical recommendations from Basin Street.
420 New Orleans Music Show #22
John Ellis & Double-Wide: Dance Like There's No Tomorrow
"Each of the players on this album shine, both independently and as a member of the quartet, with Ellis' compositions standing up to the brilliance of his past works. If you have enjoyed previous John Ellis releases, you will surely enjoy this one."