We began day 2 of Satchmo Summerfest – a celebration of Louis Armstrong’s birthday – with the official Summerfest second line parade. Just like with The Roots of Music the day before, rain doused the parading brass bands, dancers, and convertible-riding royalty. But, we’re a rain-or-shine kinda town so even with the grey-skied downpour, the colors were vibrant, the music was infectious, and energy was high. And this time I was equipped with rain boots for the big puddles and the slush of grassy mud. Or muddy grass. Definitely mud.
Our first bite of the day was the savory, spicy Collard Greens ($8) from Praline Connection. John Boutté (of HBO’s Treme fame) sang passionately on the Barracks Street Stage as we waited for our Charbroiled Jerk Chicken w/ Dirty Lamborghini Rice ($13) from Theaudric’s Real Clever Cuisine.
After a midday break, I returned for one of my favorite groups – the Original Pinettes Brass Band, the first female brass band. I’m a longtime fan of their funky mix of standards and originals. I was pleased when the band was joined by vivacious and talented Anjelika “Jelly” Joseph – I’d seen them perform together twice before. Having watched this band evolve for over a decade, I can say they continue to get better and better. Sunday’s show was one of the most fun ever – I honestly don’t know whether they were having more fun or we were. It was definitely a party.
I returned to Cafe Dauphine for another serving of Fried Green Tomatoes w/ Shrimp Remoulade ($10) then made my way to the Esplanade Street Stage for Da Truth Brass Band. I’d come around the back of the Old U.S. Mint and the stage, so I didn’t see the dance-off occurring inside the tent at first. There were at least a dozen kids second-line dancing in the muddy grass. I’d left one brass-band-inspired party to go to a younger, rowdier party.
Though I did check out fabulous Charmaine Neville on the Barracks Street Stage, I felt drawn to finish the fest with the exuberant kids still dancing an hour later to their city’s homegrown music. Satchmo Fest truly helps sustain the city’s culture and creates a place for generations of culture bearers to influence and support the next generations.
For those who’ve followed the young trombonist I first photographed in 2018, he’s now a member of The Roots of Music and has switched from trombone to tuba. As in years past, he played with several brass bands at the fest including the Pinettes and Da Truth. Enjoy the photos!