Dr. John celebrated his birthday yesterday and while a day late we're not a dollar short in honoring great souls like the Doc. The man born Malcolm John Rebennack Jr. on November 21, 1941 has done MUCH for our collective musical health, serving as an ambassador to New Orleans and the spirit world running behind it. Beyond his own work, his piano and songwriting are threaded into the workings of contemporary soul and rock in a foundational way, a flavor as American as hamburgers and apple pie 'cept it's our minds and spirits that get stuffed. You can write us a prescription anytime, Doctor, sir. Happy birthday, Mac, you're one of the best!
Music For Human's feature on The Radiators
The Radiators were born during a transitional decade in the history of New Orleans music. The Meters, the premier funk band, had disbanded, the Neville Brothers formed, and in 1980 Professor Longhair, the father of New Orleans R&B and spiritual embodiment of Crescent City Soul had passed on. This decade would prove to be the fertile period of development when a unique blend of rhythms and sounds came together and "Fish Head" music was born. The Radiators, an extremely eclectic group of musicians, rely on a myriad of musical influences to create their own sound-"Fish Head Music". At a Radiators show it is not uncommon to hear blues, R&B, jazz, country, Zydeco, soul, swing, and even gospel filtering through their original New Orleans Rock N' Roll.
Irvin Mayfield and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra to unveil a revamped "All the Saints"
Even New Orleans' official cultural ambassador occasionally needs a recharge.
Irvin Mayfield received his at fellow trumpeter Shamarr Allen's birthday celebration at Tipitina's in July. Mayfield arrived to discover a brass band blowout in full swing.
"There was no separation between the stage and the audience, " Mayfield recalled. "I've played all over the world, but it had been so long since I felt such overwhelming warmth like that. It made me fall in love with music, and New Orleans, again. It took me out of that burned-out stage and made me realize what the promise of this place is."
Rediscovering the joy of life in New Orleans despite its myriad frustrations is the theme of Mayfield's new "In Love All Over Again." He and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra debut it on Friday, Nov. 21 at Christ Church Cathedral during the fourth incarnation of "All the Saints: A Festival of Healing, Celebration and Jazz."
MUSICIANS BRINGING MUSICIANS HOME IV:
A BENEFIT CONCERT FOR SWEET HOME NEW ORLEANS
The "Musicians Bringing Musicians Home IV" concert is the celebratory and fundraising finale of the fourth three-day activist retreat hosted by Air Traffic Control and the Future of Music Coalition since the Gulf Coast storms of 2005. This retreat brings established and emerging artists from around the country to New Orleans to tour affected neighborhoods, visit with some of the city's notable musicians and community leaders and participate in strategy sessions about how to integrate activism and philanthropy into their work as musicians. Through these activities, musicians share their experiences, learn how to "plug-in" to activist circles, and discuss how to best address needs in their hometowns and in the communities through which they tour.
Radio documentary about Jonathan Freilich is as wide-ranging as guitarist's career
Regarding the subject of David Kunian's latest radio documentary, it's OK to ask:
Why Jonathan Freilich?
Founder of the New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars, Freilich doesn't appear to fit the near-mythological mold of some of Kunian's other radio-documentary subjects, who over the years have included drummer and composer James Black, Eddie "Guitar Slim" Jones and Earl King.
Actually, guitarist Freilich doesn't fit any mold. Way beyond the Klezmer All-Stars, his musical projects range from jazz (Naked on the Floor) through the out-there big band (The Naked Orchestra) to ska (007) and R&B (Poor Man's Speedball).see also: Freilich & Klezmers talk about their latest album
And that's the short list.
Something Else! features Crescent City Gold, "The Ultimate Session" (1994)
Assembled are a who's-who group of New Orleans musicians who played nearly five decades before with the likes of Little Richard, Fats Domino and Professor Longhair. Fronted by familiar performers Dr. John and Allen Toussaint, "Session" includes the great funky drummer Earl Palmer (pictured at right; he originally played on "Lucille," reprised here, and on scores of other early rock sides); saxophonists Alvin "Red" Tyler and Lee Allen; and pianist Edward Frank, among others.
Shannon McNally and Sonny Landreth @ 2007 Jazzfest