Sunday, December 28, 2008

NolaFunk Lagniappe

Meet The Radiators, Feel Their Energy…

Wild and Free

This is an original New Orleans band. Like all New Orleans residents the band members went through Hurricane Katrina and the levy disaster that happened afterward, and the total damage and suffering it caused to their town. Although it has affected them all personally it has not slowed them down much. The Radiators have been producing original songs for over 30 years. Wow. The most amazing part of this phenom is that all of the original members are still playing together making this one of just a few long tenured bands. This New Orleans quintet has been together touring and writing songs long enough to have a cult following that fills venues everytime. They are an integral part of New Orleans and the re-vitalization of the town. They have had gigged at Tips and other New Orleans clubs for well over 20 years.

Homemade World: Quintron & Miss Pussycat

You don't expect to hear Mr. Quintron discuss a water pump. The world of Quintron and his wife/percussionist/puppeteer Miss Pussycat is rarely so mundane, but while in New York City for a show featuring his new album Too Thirsty 4 Love and an art show of Pussycat's puppets, the van broke down and had to be dealt with.

A more common context for Quintron and Miss Pussycat is theatrical, such as their performance in the Bingo! Parlour during this year's Voodoo Music Experience. Dressed in a blue, sparkled jumpsuit, Quintron settled in his console--a small bank of keyboards fronted with a car grill complete with headlights and a "Quintron" license plate, along with a mess of less obvious homemade instruments and Drum Buddy, his light-activated synthesizer with its signature inverted coffee can on top. When he sat down, a droning organ swell rose, part roller rink, part Phantom of the Opera. He nursed the drone along, then brought it under control and started to frame it into a song. When the rhythm kicked in, Miss Pussycat stood beside him shaking maracas dressed in red and white cozies that matched the puff on her head. The drone becomes "Waterfall," a ride-the-train dance party from the new album, and when it was over, it returned to the drone that spawned it and filled the space between songs.

Drummer Herlin Riley comes home for the holidays
Drummer Herlin Riley comes home for the  holidays

A big plus for the holiday season in New Orleans is that many of our musicians come in off the road and their names pop up on local club schedules. December listings blossom with those who we boast as local artists but who in reality are internationally renowned musicians.

Dr. John's 429 Records Debut "CITY THAT CARE FORGOT" Nominated for "Best Contemporary Blues" Grammy

Dr. John (aka Mac Rebennack, Jr.), has secured a Grammy Award nomination for "Best Contemporary Blues Album" for his 2008 recording "CITY THAT CARE FORGOT." He recently signed to the Savoy Label Group's 429 Records which released the heartfelt homage to his hometown of New Orleans. Described by USA Today as "a rambunctious and furious post-Katrina polemic," "CITY THAT CARE FORGOT" is both an eloquent and an angry musical venting of emotions surrounding the devastation and lack of response to the Katrina disaster. This is Dr. John's 11th Grammy Award nomination overall having won the award in 1989, 1992, 1996 and 2000. The 51st Grammy Awards will be held on February 8th.

Louisiana Grammy Nominees Announced (from Weekly Beat)

This year Louisiana didn't have to rely on the jazz, blues and Cajun/zydeco categories to get a little love. Lil Wayne and Tha Carter III did the heavy lifting, garnering nominations for Album of the Year, Best Rap Solo Performance ( "A Milli" ), Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group (he competes against himself here as he's on Jay-Z's "Swagga Like Us" and Jay-Z's on his "Mr. Carter" ), Best Rap/Sung Collaboration ( "Got Money" ), Best Rap Song ("Lollipop" and "Swagga Like Us" ) and Best Rap Album.

But Weezy's not the whole story. Terence Blanchard is nominated for Best Jazz Instrumental Solo for "Be-Bop" from Live at the 2007 Monterey Jazz Festival, and the Blind Boys of Alabama are up for Best Traditional Gospel Album for Down in New Orleans, which they recorded here at Preservation Hall with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, the Hot 8 Brass Band, Allen Toussaint and more. Louisiana and friends own the Best Contemporary Blues Album category, with three of the five nominees from the area: Marcia Ball (Peace, Love & BBQ), Dr. John and the Lower 911 (City That Care Forgot) and Irma Thomas (Simply Grand).

The Best Zydeco or Cajun Music Album will be contested for the second time this year by BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet (Live at the 2008 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival), Michael Doucet (From Now On), the Pine Leaf Boys (Homage Au Passé), Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys (Live at the 2008 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival) and Cedric Watson (Cedric Watson). Once again, Harry Shearer is nominated for Best Comedy Album, this time for Songs of the Bushmen.

Tulane offers Jazz Studies and New Orleans Music

Tulane University is expanding its graduate degree program in Musicology with a concentration in Jazz Studies and New Orleans Music.

The Department of Music is actively seeking applicants for the expanded program, which launches in Fall 2009 and includes funding for tuition waivers and stipends for up to five students. Applications are due February 1, 2009.

Interview: Jimmy of The Subdudes

New Orleans’ rockers and masters of harmony The Subdudes recently did something they’ve never done since getting together way back in 1987 - put out a live concert video. If almost to make up for lost time, the sweet sounding quintet have put out an inspired double DVD documentary and concert film displaying two completely different sides of the band’s music.

Filmed over the course of three days in Annapolis Maryland, The Subdudes Live at Ram’s Head and Unplugged at Pleasant Plains two-DVD set contains 15 song selections from two nights of concerts at The Ram’s Head on the first disc. The second disc features 70 minutes of interviews, an unplugged set and original studio footage shot while creating and recording the Street Symphony album with legendary producer George Massenberg in Nashville Tennessee. We recently spoke with ‘dudes’ bassist Jimmy Messa about the band’s first DVD…

Trumpeter Christian Scott fights for the future of jazz

Christian Scott

"If I hear it a certain way, that's the way it's going to be," Christian Scott says.When asked about the state of jazz, Christian Scott's mood sours. "The [stuff] is garbage," said the New Orleans-born trumpeter, speaking by phone from San Francisco, his voice sharp, direct. "I mean, you want the truth?"

A Marsalis who is drumming up the "life aspects" of music

A Marsalis who is drumming up the "life aspects" of music
Drummer Jason Marsalis credits a lunchtime conversation at Lil Dizzy's Café with fellow percussionists Herlin Riley and Shannon Powell for his greater appreciation of the "life aspects" of music. The three New Orleans drummers were at the Tremé restaurant to prepare for their tribute to the legendary Max Roach for an upcoming set at the 2008 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. As it turned out, the performance became a highlight of the festival.

Threadhead Records: New Susan Cowsill Project Kicks Off in January

Threadhead Records, a recently launched fan-supported label organized by devotees of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival (and NOLA music, in general), is now accepting contributions to fund the new CD from Susan Cowsill.

Singer-songwriter Cowsill, most recently of the Continental Drifters, and most famously the youngest member of late ’60s family band the Cowsills (inspiration for television’s “Partridge Family”), is headed to the studio in January to record her second solo album.

Susan Cowsill, on stage at the Louisiana Music Factory

Her first solo release, Just Believe It, recorded shortly after Hurricane Katrina, is being remixed and remastered for a January release on Threadhead Records. That 2005 disc, featuring guest appearances by Lucinda Williams, Vicki Peterson, and Adam Duritz of Counting Crows, generated loads of critical acclaim.

The Meters - Hand Clapping Song (♫)

In their 25-year history, The Meters have grooved their way around the globe. They have toured with such talents as The Rolling Stones, and have been the rhythm for such diverse artists as Dr. John, Paul McCartney, Robert Palmer and Patti Labelle.

Considered by many to be the founding fathers of funk, The Meters created a unique sound that lasted through the sixties and seventies and was reborn in the late eighties. Their trademark sound blends funk, blues, and dance grooves with a New Orleans vibe.

New Orleans is internationally known for its rich musical culture as well as the birthplace of jazz music. Although the city still maintains its image for being a musical mecca, it has been facing a paradox between the music industry and its music. The music industry has been having a hard time matching with the overabundance of musical talent in New Orleans.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Upcoming: TROMBONE SHORTY & ORLEANS AVENUE @ Sullivan Hall (12/30 & 31)

Trombone Short & Orleans Avenue are a funk/pop/hip-hop mix populated with musicians like frontman Troy "Trombone Shorty"Andrews who are young in age only. Orleans Avenue brings the heat winding audiences up in merry confusion. Jazz fans shake their heads in unexpected delight while the funksters shake what they got with glee.

"Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue is high energy, high octane and highly contagious."

Sunday, December 21, 2008

NolaFunk Lagniappe

Walter "Wolfman" Washington, "Doin' The Funky Thing" (2008)

A kind of love letter to New Orleans, and its richly flavorful musical styles, "Doin' The Funky Thing" brings together everything that should have made Walter "Wolfman" Washington an overnight sensation. He never quite made it big. Yet, along the way, all of those experiences seeped into Washington's sound, a galloping thing which melds country and urban blues with bop, funk and soul. His ability to croon as well as he shouts always sanctified Washington's live shows; he's more quietly emotive on his records, but still gritty and direct. Like most New Orleanians, Washington was sent into exile as Katrina flooded into his hometown. What followed was a long hiatus from the studio and from the Crescent City, a break that makes "I'm Back," this swampy blues featuring Dr. John at the Hammond B-3, both a clarion call to old fans and the emotional centerpiece of "Doin' The Funky Thing": "It's coming back to life," Washington sings with both defiant hope and no small amount of soulful reminiscence.

Home of the Groove's "Mary Jane By Any Other Name. . . "
Mary Jane Hooper's recordings as a solo artist were all done with the supervision and collaboration of Eddie Bo. As has often been the case with Bo's projects of the era, for years there were elements of mystery and myth surrounding the nearly forgotten singer and her sessions. Fortunately, much of that was dispelled with the release of theTuff City/Funky Delicacies 1997 CD compilation of Hooper's recordings, Teach Me, the first edition of which had problems (my copy had only 9 of the 13 listed tracks!) and was later re-issued asPsychedelphiawith all of Hooper's known sessions, both issued and unissued. The CD initially came out under the singer's actual name, Sena Fletcher, which was a revelation in itself; and Scott Jordan's brief but well-done notes provided more valuable background about the singer.

Royal Fingerbowl disc in the works?

Alex McMurray did another Royal Fingerbowl reunion not too long ago, and it got me thinking about that band again. Prompted me to pick up another copy of their second CD, which I had purchased new when it came out then promptly left in a rental car somewhere in Washington state.

Now, 10 years after their first release, a new Fingerbowl CD is in the works!


Jones moved to New Orleans in the early fifties and eventually carved out a niche for himself as an independent 'record man' and producer, one who seemed to thrive after most of the other small companies had gone out of business.

As he told Jeff Hannusch in The Soul of New Orleans; "As I got more artists, I didn't want to go to the radio station with seven records on the same label... the dee-jays would say 'I can't play all of those records...' So I started new labels and I switched colors on the record labels to make them look different." Another of them was called J.B.'s, on which his re-recorded version of Mardi Gras standard Second Line (the original White Cliffs master by Bill Sinigal having been lost in the Cosimo Matassa bankruptcy) would appear in 1974, and get played to death every Carnival season since. J.B.'s was also home to great records by James Rivers and Charles Brimmer. We've already talked about how it was Brimmer's version of God Bless Our Love that charted in 1975, after Chelsea picked up the J.B.'s original for national distribution.The most enduring of all of the Senator's imprints, however, was Hep' Me, which he operated right up until the day he died. This greasy chunk of funk that we have here today was the very first release on the label in 1973. Recorded at Deep South Studios in Baton Rouge, Ray J. was the stage name of one Raymond Jones, who was the keyboard man in Brimmer's band, in addition to holding down a day job as the music teacher at Xavier Prep back in the Crescent City. He would work with the Senator for years as an arranger, alongside folks like Sam Henry Jr. and Wardell Quezergue. Once Allen Toussaint and Marshall Sehorn opened their Sea-Saint Studio in New Orleans, Jones became one of their best customers, working out some kind of percentage deal with Sehorn in exchange for studio time. He would produce some of his best records at the studio on folks like Barbara George, Tommy Ridgley, Bobby Powell, Walter 'Wolfman' Washington and, of course, Johnny Adams.

Donald Harrison

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"Mr. Harrison turned out to be one of the most musicologically literate jazz players to come out in ages.” -New York Times


Harrison now a proven master of many musical genres, has written and performed many innovative classic jazz compositions. Some of his compositions are now part of the standard repertoire of jazz. He has written and performed in the R&B and smooth jazz genre where his chart topping recording, “The Power of Cool” has received radio airplay everyday for the last 10 years. He has also written and performed as a Hip-hop MC. His influence on the whole rap culture as an early mentor of The Notorius BIG on the science of rap and life was documented on VH-1. He is also master singer/dancer in traditional New Orleans culture. Harrison now a Big Chief even designs and makes his own Mardi Gras costumes which are considered works of art. He is The Big Chief of Congo Square with his group the Congo Nation. He has composed and played classical works with major orchestras. The question with Harrison is not what he can do, but is there anything he can’t do? So far he has mastered and influenced everything he has touched.

A hidden gem: Check out Stanton Moore's "Take It To The Street" CD

I was poking around the other day on Galactic drummer Stanton Moore’s site and found that he’s self-released a CD that I didn’t know about. Turns out, it’s a killer disc: “Take It to the Street (The Music).”

Says Stanton:

I’ve always enjoyed listening back to the music we recorded for the project. For the book and DVD, only a few tunes could be included on each due to space issues and the tunes needed to be faded out after a few minutes. Included here is the majority of the tunes from the project in their entirety including a couple of bonus tracks that didn’t make it into the original project.

Songwriters take center stage at first-ever New Orleans festival at the House of Blues

The craft of marrying words to music is the focus of this weekend's inaugural New Orleans Songwriters Festival, or "Songfest."

Ponderosa Stomp to return to the House of Blues

Even as staffers of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival book bands for their upcoming 40th festival, producers of a simultaneous event have announced a line-up of obscure rockabilly, soul, funk, gospel, blues, rhythm & blues and garage rock.

The eighth Ponderosa Stomp, scheduled for April 28-29 at the House of Blues, features Wanda Jackson, Dale Hawkins, James Burton, Dan Penn and Bobby Emmons, Howard Tate, Otis Clay, the Hi Rhythm Section, Question Mark & the Mysterians, the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, the Bo-Keys, Lil Buck Senegal & the Top Cats featuring Stanley "Buckwheat Zydeco" Dural, Dennis Coffey, Robert Parker, Jivin Gene and dozens more. The Stomp also includes a three-day conference.
Here's the list, as published on the Ponderosa Stomp website

Rebirth Brass Band's Phil Frazier hospitalized, expected to recover

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tomorrow: Irma Thomas & David Torkanowsky Live on WWOZ

Venue: Live from the WWOZ Studio

photo of Irma Thomas

Be sure to tune in to WWOZ on Wednesday, when the Soul Queen of New Orleans, Irma Thomas, and WWOZ's own David Torkanowsky come by the studio during George Ingmire's New Orleans Music Show for a special live performance to celebrate the holidays.

New Orleans Jazzfest 2009 Lineup Announced


Wynton Marsalis, Aretha Franklin, Dave Matthews Band, James Taylor, Sugarland, Joe Cocker, Ben Harper, Tony Bennett, Earth, Wind & Fire, Kings of Leon, Neville Brothers, Wilco, Bonnie Raitt, Allen Toussaint, The O’Jays, Erykah Badu, Dr. John

Among hundreds scheduled to appear at
historic edition of Festival

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

Scroll down to read the Weekend by Weekend Lineup

APRIL 24 - 26 (1st WEEKEND)

Wynton Marsalis, Dave Matthews Band, James Taylor, Joe Cocker, Earth Wind & Fire, Wilco, Spoon, Erykah Badu, Irma Thomas, Orishas, Third World, Robert Cray, Etta James & the Roots Band, Mavis Staples, Drive-By Truckers feat. Booker T. Jones, Johnny Winter, Pete Seeger, Hugh Masekela, Better Than Ezra, Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, Galactic, Roy Haynes, Pete Fountain, Avett Brothers, Kinky, Roy Rogers, Del McCoury Band, Terence Blanchard, Marc Broussard, DJ Jubilee with 5th Ward Weebie and Ms. Tee, Buckwheat Zydeco’s 30th Anniversary feat. The Hitchhikers, Tab Benoit, Locos por Juana, Trombone Shorty, Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Yacub Addy and Odadaa of Ghana, Rebirth Brass Band Reunion with Kermit Ruffins, Ivan Neville & Dumpstaphunk, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience, Amanda Shaw & the Cute Guys, Donald Harrison, The Anointed Jackson Sisters, Tribute to Mahalia Jackson featuring Irma Thomas, Mavis Staples, and Pamela Landrum, Chris Smither, Henry Butler, Papa Grows Funk, Robert Mirabal, Harlem Blues & Jazz Band, Rockin’ Dopsie, Jr. & the Zydeco Twisters, Sonny Landreth, Benjy Davis Project, The Vettes, Mem Shannon & the Membership, Stephanie Jordan, Warren Storm, Willie Tee and Cypress feat. Tommy McLain and T K Hulin, Astral Project, Ladysmith Redlions of South Africa, Don Vappie & the Creole Jazz Serenaders, Amammereso Agofomma of Ghana, The Dixie Cups, Chubby Carrier & the Bayou Swamp Band, Germaine Bazzle, John Mooney & Bluesiana, Marlon Jordan, Tabby Thomas, Spencer Bohren, Savoy Music Center of Eunice Saturday Cajun Jam, Dew Drop Inn Revisited hosted by Deacon John feat. Wanda Rouzan, Eddie Bo, Allen Toussaint, Robert Parker, and Al “Carnival Time” Johnson, Paul Sanchez & the Rolling Road Show, Wayne Toups & Zydecajun, Leroy Jones presents the Fairview Brass Band Reunion Tribute to Danny Barker, Bruce Daigrepont, Vivaz!, Pfister Sisters’ 30th Anniversary, Gringo do Choro, Dr. Michael White & the Original Liberty Jazz Band, Thais Clark, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux & the Golden Eagles Mardi Gras Indians, Henry Gray & the Cats, Joe Krown, Walter “Wolfman” Washington & Russell Batiste, Jr., Lil’ Buck Sinegal Blues Band, EOE, Ebony Hillbillies, Crescent City Allstars feat. James Andrews, Hot 8 Brass Band, Schatzy, Jake Smith, 19th Street Red Blues Band, Brasilliance!, Mighty Chariots of Fire, Sharde Thomas & the Rising Star Fife & Drum Band, Chris Owens, Topsy Chapman, New Bumpers’ Revival Jazz Band of France, Zulu Male Ensemble, Jo “Cool” Davis, Leah Chase, Herlin Riley, Roderick Paulin, Mahogany Brass Band, Ingrid Lucia, MyNameisJonMichael, Texas Johnny Brown & the Quality Blues Band, Rockie Charles & the Stax of Love, AsheSon, Jim McCormick, Lil’ Malcolm & the House Rockers, Dwayne Dopsie & the Zydeco Hellraisers, Thomas “Big Hat” Fields & his Foot Stompin’ Zydeco Band, Guitar Slim, Jr., Storyville Stompers Brass Band, Willis Prudhomme & Zydeco Express, Lost Bayou Ramblers, Waterseed, Creole Wild West Mardi Gras Indians, DJ Hektik & the New Orleans Society of Dance with Freedia and Nobi, Tipsy Chicks, Jonno Frishberg & Bayou DeVille, Christian Serpas & Ghost Town, Kumbuka African Drum and Dance Collective, NewBirth Brass Band, High Ground Drifters Bluegrass Band, New Orleans Night Crawlers Brass Band, Hadley Castille & the Sharecropper Band, Carrollton Hunters and Cherokee Hunters Mardi Gras Indians, Big Steppers, Furious Five, and Untouchables SAPCs, Patrice Fisher & Arpa feat. special guests from Brazil, Clive Wilson’s New Orleans Serenaders feat. Butch Thompson, Young Tuxedo Brass Band, Betty Winn & One A-Chord, McDonogh #35 High School Gospel Choir, Sophisticated Ladies feat. Barbara Shorts, Leslie Smith, Cindy Scott, and Judy Spellman, Golden Comanche and Seminoles Mardi Gras Indians, N.O.C.C.A. Jazz Ensemble, Real Untouchables Brass Band, Olympia Aid, New Look & First Division SAPCs, New Orleans Jazz Vipers, Tommy Sancton, Society Brass Band, Connie Jones, St. Joseph the Worker Music Ministry, UNO Jazz Combo, June Gardner & the Fellas, New Orleans Spiritualettes, Smitty Dee’s Brass Band, Kid Simmons’ Local International Allstars, Semolian Warriors, Comanche Hunters, and Golden Star Hunters Mardi Gras Indians, Louisiana Repertory Jazz Ensemble, Tyronne Foster & the Arc Singers, Loyola University Jazz Ensemble, Franklin Avenue B.C. Mass Choir, Small Souljas Brass Band, Val & the Love Alive Fellowship Choir, Single Ladies, Family Ties, Big Nine, and Keep N It Real SAPCs, Second Mount Carmel Gospel Choir, Xavier University Jazz Ensemble, Heritage School of Music Band, Gospel Soul Children, Nine Times Men, Single Men, Dumaine Gang, Divine Ladies, and Lady Jetsetters SAPCs, Red, White & Blue and Wild Mohican Mardi Gras Indians, Reverend Charles Jackson & the Jackson Travelers, Nineveh B.C. Mass Choir, Kid Simmon’s Local International Allstars, Voices of St. Peter Claver, David & Roselyn, Grayhawk, Washboard Leo, Red Hot Brass Band, Kayla Woodson & Louisiana Lightnin’….

APRIL 30 - MAY 3 (2nd WEEKEND)

Aretha Franklin, TBA, Sugarland, Ben Harper and The Relentless7, Tony Bennett, Kings of Leon, The Neville Brothers, Bonnie Raitt, Common, Emmylou Harris, Dr. John, Buddy Guy, Los Lobos, The O’Jays, Toots & the Maytals, Allen Toussaint, John Mayall, Solomon Burke, Doc Watson, Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, The Whispers, Jakob Dylan, Chuck Brown, Meter Men: Zig, George, and Leo, Kurt Elling, Rance Allen, Cowboy Mouth, Guy Clark, Radiators Aaron Neville, Lil’ Ed & the Blues Imperials, Tab Benoit & the Wetland Allstars, Marcia Ball, Ellis Marsalis, Kermit Ruffins & the Barbecue Swingers, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Poncho Sanchez Latin Jazz Band, Jon Cleary & the Absolute Monster Gentlemen, Frankie Ford, BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet, Mississippi Mass Choir, Walter “Wolfman” Washington & the Roadmasters, Anders Osborne, the subdudes, Esperanza Spalding, Patty Griffin, Deacon John, Chris Thomas King, Kind of Blue @ 50 Tribute to Miles Davis feat. Jimmy Cobb, Wallace Roney, Larry Willis, and Buster Williams, John Scofield & the Piety Street Band, George Wein & the Newport Allstars feat. Randy Brecker, VaShawn Mitchell & Friends, Nicholas Payton, Linda Tillery & the Cultural Heritage Choir, Irvin Mayfield & the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, Bonerama, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, The Genius of Sidney Bechet: A Tribute feat. Bob Wilber, Dr. Michael White, and Brian “Breeze” Cayolle, Delfeayo Marsalis Quintet, Geno Delafose & French Rockin’ Boogie, Nathan & the Zydeco Cha Chas, Theresa Andersson, Cedric Burnside & Lightnin’ Malcolm, Bobby Lounge feat. Sarah Quintana, Chieck Hamala Diabate of Mali, The Iguanas, Treme Brass Band, Lars Edegran & the New Orleans Ragtime Orchestra, Lionel Ferbos & the Palm Court Jazz Band, Fredy Omar con su Banda, Rosie Ledet & the Zydeco Playboys, Big Chief Bo Dollis & the Wild Magnolias, Soul Rebels, Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys, Luther Kent & Trickbag, Banu Gibson’s Hot Jazz with Bucky Pizzarelli, Mark Braud, Sunpie & the Louisiana Sunspots, Marva Wright & the BMWs, Kenny Bill Stinson & the Ark-LA-Mystics, Gregg Stafford’s Jazz Hounds’ Tribute to Danny Barker feat. Juanita Brooks, Eric Lindell, C.J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band, Rumba Buena, Roddie Romero & the Hub City Allstars, Charmaine Neville Band, Eddie Bo, Ori Danse Club of Benin, Crocodile Gumboot Dancers of South Africa, Rotary Downs, George French & the New Orleans Storyville Jazz Band, Walter Payton & Filé Gumbo, Dash Rip Rock, John Boutté, Sonny Bourg & the Bayou Blues Band, Johnny Sketch & the Dirty Notes, Sherman Robertson, Honey Island Swamp Band, The Revealers, I’Voire Spectacle feat. Seguenon Kone, Alex McMurray, 101 Runners, Midnite Disturbers, Paulin Brothers Brass Band, Big Chief Peppy & the Golden Arrows Mardi Gras Indians, D.L. Menard & the Louisiana Aces, James Rivers Movement, Otra, Tony Green’s Gypsy Jazz, New Orleans Klezmer Allstars, John Rankin, Betsy McGovern & the Poor Clares, Kenny Neal, Lil’ Brian & the Travelers, Jeremy Davenport, Keith Frank & the Soileau Zydeco Band, Jamal Batiste & the Jam-Allstars, Ensemble Fatien feat. Seguenon Kone, Dr. Michael White, and Jason Marsalis, Sharon Martin, St. Louis Slim, Bryan Lee & the Blues Power Band, TBC Brass Band, Lady Rollers, Original C.T.C., and Nine Times Ladies SAPCs, Feufollet, War Chief Juan & Young Fire and White Cloud Hunters Mardi Gras Indians, New Orleans Bingo! Show, David Egan, Kidd Jordan-Al Fielder & the IAQ, Drew Landry Band, Driskill Mountain Boys, Jumpin’ Johnny Sansone, Washboard Chaz, Bamboula 2000, Danza, Marisa y Mariachi Agave, J. Monque’D Blues Band, Cedric Watson, Twangorama, Higher Heights, Tim Laughlin, Elysian Fieldz, Percussion Inc., Pinettes Brass Band, Scene Boosters, Old N Nu Fellas, Secondline Jammers, and Ladies of Unity SAPCs, Little Freddie King Blues Band, Glen David Andrews, Po’ Henry & Tookie, Sherman Washington & the Zion Harmonizers, Culu Children’s Traditional African Dance Ensemble, Paky Saavedra’s Bandido, New Orleans Mardi Gras Indian Rhythm Section, Bob French & the Original Tuxedo Jazz Band, Shamarr Allen, Free Agents Brass Band, Jambalaya Cajun Band, Benny Grunch & the Bunch, Javier Tobar & Elegant Gypsy, Creole Zydeco Farmers, Bonsoir Catin, Corey Ledet, Gina Brown, Reggie Hall & the Twilighters feat. Lady Bee, Forgotten Souls Brass Band, Young Magnolias, Golden Sioux, and Black Feathers Mardi Gras Indians, New Leviathan Oriental Foxtrot Orchestra, Westbank Steppers, Valley of Silent Men, and Pigeon Town Steppers SAPCs, Doreen’s Jazz New Orleans, Truth Universal & Jimi Clever, Shades of Praise Gospel Singers, Brother Tyrone, Lazarus, Berard Family Band, New Orleans Jazz Ramblers, Courtney Bryan Trio, Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, DJ Captain Charles, Blodie’s Jazz Jam, New Orleans Helsinki Project, Original Last Straws, Chris Clifton, Panorama Jazz Band, Mario Abney, John Lee & the Heralds of Christ, Original Dixieland Jazz Band, Hot Club of New Orleans, The Moonshiners, Clarinet Woodshed feat. Evan Christopher and Gregory Agid, SUBR Jazz Ensemble, Michael Ward, DJ Soul Sister, The Johnson Extension, Black Eagles, Geronimo Hunters, Wild Tchoupitoulas, and Wild Apaches Mardi Gras Indians, Watson Memorial Teaching Ministries, Tulane University Jazz Ensemble, First Emmanuel Baptist Church Choir, Louis Ford & his New Orleans Flairs, Fi Yi Yi & the Mandingo Warriors, Red Hawk, and Black Seminoles Mardi Gras Indians, Leviticus Gospel Choir, Dillard University Jazz Ensemble, Bester Singers and the Dynamic Smooth Family Gospel Singers, Bon Temps Roulez, New Generation, and Undefeated Divas SAPCs, The Electrifying Crownseekers, Pinstripe Brass Band, Ebenezer Baptist Church Mass Choir, Trouble Nation and Ninth Ward Hunters Mardi Gras Indians, Famous Rocks of Harmony, Highsteppers Brass Band, McMain High School Gospel Choir, Voices of Distinction, Gal Holiday, Lyle Henderson & Emmanuel, Coolie Family Gospel Singers, Original Big 7 and Original 4 SAPCs, Tornado Brass Band, Eddie “Chops” Paris, Golden Blade, Wild Red Flame, and Mohawk Hunters Mardi Gras Indians, Morning Star B.C. Mass Choir, New Wave Brass Band, Julio y Cesar Band, First Emmanuel Church Gospel Choir, Greater Antioch Full Gospel B.C. Mass Choir, Roderick Paulin, N’Kafu African Dance Ensemble, Original Prince of Wales and the Original Lady Buckjumpers SAPCs, Johnette Downing, Young Guardians of the Flame, Eric McAllister, N'Fungola Sibo West African Dance Company, Mt. Hermon B.C. Mass Choir ….

Monday, December 15, 2008

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival to unveil lineup tomorrow (Tues. 12/16)

Producers of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival plan to roll out the 2009 roster of performers on Tuesday, Dec. 16.

Festival Productions Inc.-New Orleans, the company that co-produces Jazzfest with AEG, has scheduled a press conference for 10 a.m. Tuesday. Jazzfest founder George Wein is expected to attend the announcement of the roster for the 40th Jazzfest, scheduled for April 24-26 and April 30-May 3 at the Fair Grounds.

Items to be revealed Tuesday include a list of performers for each Jazzfest weekend -- the day-by-day schedule will not be announced until next year -- as well as a new ticket package option.

NolaFunk Lagniappe

Home of the Groove's "Keeping An Eye On Merry Clayton"

Before the end of the year is upon us, there's time for one more installment on a New Orleans female R&B artist. One of my favorite New Orleans vocalists,Merry Clayton(whose birthday will be here soon), is a special case for several reasons. While she has roots in the city, she has remained an outsider during the course of her career, never recording there. The only work she has done with a New Orleans producer that I know of was when she sang back-up on Allen Toussaint's first solo album, which was cut in LA. Having anaccomplished career spanning over four decades, Clayton has worked with some of the biggest names in the music business and earned their respect, but has never realized the kind of success that would make her name instantly recognizable to the general public. Of course, had that been the case, you wouldn't be reading about her here. . . .

Grayson Capps & The Stumpknockers: Rott 'N' Roll

Some albums stun us slow, taking us more like the rising heat of a great kiss than a frying pan to the head. Until you let 'em in, let 'em have their way with you a bit, you may not realize what you're holding. In many respects, this description fits the entire career of Grayson Capps but never more so than Rott 'N' Roll (Hyena Records), a singer-songwriter driven future classic that roasts one with deliberate, charcoal intensity. The first Capps album credited to Grayson and his longtime salt of the earth band, The Stumpknockers, hangs together with the post-journeyman mastery of Creedence Clearwater Revival's Cosmo's Factory or John Prine's Bruised Orange, with the added virtue of greater emotional heft than either of those revered records and the palpable embrace of a delightful group chemistry that infuses and elevates every little element.

Full of $5 dollar whores, cornbread, sock monkeys and folks caught forever in shadow, Rott 'N' Roll firmly establishes Capps as one of the preeminent musical blacksmiths currently swinging a hammer.

Future of Music Coalition's "New Orleans Done Right"

Jazz in New Orleans
If you ever make it to New Orleans, we highly recommend you visit the Mother-in-Law Lounge, the former home of and now tribute to Ernie K-Doe. Ernie's widow Antoinette K-Doe tells the story of how she waited out Katrina for days in the second floor of the lounge before she got airlifted out of the building still flooded in six feet of water, but you wouldn't know it from seeing the new tiki bar in the back and the Christmas decorations alight.

Kermit Ruffins single "Christmas Time Is Here"

Kermit Ruffins just released a single, "Christmas Time Is Here". It is a tease for a full length Christmas record coming in late 2009. Pick it up on your favorite digital platform, or order it online from

NPR's Song of the Day features "Jon Cleary: Setting A 'Groove' On Fire"

Jon Cleary 300

A simple countdown: "One, two / You know what to do." Nimble fingers glissando down the keys and launch into New Orleans-flavored funk. This pyrotechnic pianist sings, too, with just the right mix of mellow and sharp in his voice, reinventing King Floyd's 1971 soul classic "Groove Me." While the original bumped along at a mid-tempo pace, Jon Cleary sets the song on fire.

In Memoriam: The Great Earl Palmer

photo of drummer Earl Palmer

The brilliant Tremé-born drummer Earl Palmer passed on Friday, September 19 at the age of 83 in Los Angeles. Palmer's contribution to rhythm and blues and rock and roll as a session drummer is incalculable. He was the ultimate sideman who contributed the back-beat that made the star of the recording session shine. Palmer was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000.

Earl Palmer was born in the Seventh Ward in Tremé on October 24, 1924. His childhood resembled the childhood of others in his neighborhood: hanging out at the neighborhood spots, playing ball on Claiborne under the oaks, second-lining at funerals and watching Zulu on Mardi Gras.

BackTalk with Sonny Landreth

I received Sonny Landreth’s new album, Beyond the Reach, with mixed emotions. On one hand, it’s great to see Landreth keeping company with such acknowledged guitar heavyweights as Eric Clapton and Mark Knopfler, and singers including Jimmy Buffett and Vince Gill, but there’s something about the sleek, stripped down sound of his guitar riding a bass and drums that’s hard to improve upon.

The Meters, Very Funky

Had dinner with a friend the other night and we got around to talking about George Porter who in my opinion is one of the funkiest bass players alive. I’ve had a love affair with his playing for a long time, not to say I haven’t enjoyed watching him play too. My friend was in New Orleans recently working on a music project where George Porter was the bass player. I have to admit I was extremely jealous. It’s been some time since I’ve seen him perform, and I’ve never been in a recording session with him.

Big Over-detailed Guide to New Orleans Record Stores

Well crap, looks like Antigravity just printed their "record store issue" about a month after I started working on mine, got frustrated and got lazy. Whatever, I think I can outdo them.

When visiting other places I always google for some good guide of where I should shop for music in the area and often I come up empty-handed. Well, it turns out New Orleans actually already has a few of these, but some are out of date or biased. Well, I'll be biased too, but as long as I update this blog I'll update this page. Not that I know how long I'll update this blog.

Review: Bonerama @ Funk Fest III

In the self-proclaimed music capitol of the world there seems to be no shortage of musicians performing and interacting together in Austin, Texas. But when one music capitol of the world is invaded by musicians from another music capitol of the world (say, New Orleans for example), it’s safe to bet you’ll see some firepower. Or more aptly, funkpower as was displayed over the weekend at FunkFest III at the Parish on 6th Street in downtown Austin. Two nights of hard-hitting raw funk that leaned heavy on the grooves of today’s Austin and New Orleans best in funk brass and jam music including Stanton Moore Trio, The Greyhounds ftr Topaz, Flyjack and T-Bird & The Breaks. Headlining FunkFest III Saturday night was New Orleans’ new brand of horn heavy sounds, Bonerama who by all accounts either have a lot of trombones in the band or spend too much time online.

see also: Stanton Moore Trio/Greyhounds @ FunkFest

Music DVD Review: Christian Scott - Live At NewportThe New Orleans tradition continues.

Live at Newport

Over one hundred years after the Crescent City had given the world cornetist and jazz pioneer Buddy Bolden kicking off an amazing string of brass legends from Louis Armstrong to Wynton Marsalis to Terence Blanchard, another ground-breaking trumpet player from this storied city has emerged in the last few years. His name is Christian Scott.

Live Music Dominates New Orleans Nightlife

New Orleans is known as the birthplace of jazz, an honor the city prides itself in. From dim lit jazz clubs lining the city streets to its annual Jazz and Heritage Festival, New Orleans is a great American music city. Jazz isn’t the only music being created in the Big Easy though. Many music clubs and venues offer an eclectic mix of blues, gospel, hip hop, rock and more.