Tag Archives: culture

Satchmo Summerfest 2021 – Day 2

We started the second day of Satchmo Summerfest – a celebration of Louis Armstrong’s birthday – with the Treme Brass Band. The traditional jazz band has always evolved to accommodate additions, departures and passings. I was happy to see that this iteration included Corey Henry, who I’ve loved since his Rebirth Brass Band years. 

It was another steamy day in the 90’s with a heat index over 110, so people seemed glad for the tented stages on either side of the Old U.S. Mint – home of the New Orleans Jazz Museum where you can find Armstrong’s first coronet. We found shade at an umbrella-topped table and feasted of food booth yummies from local vendors. We started with Red Beans & Rice (w/ Fried Fish) ($10) from Krab Grab Seafood. Having enjoyed their Jerk Chicken on Saturday, we stopped at 14 Parishes for Jerk Pork – but they were already out. Must’ve been good. We got the Rice and Peas ($5) instead and rounded the meal off with a refreshing Tropicalia Salad (w/ Red Onion, Lettuce, Tomato, Celery, Corn, Pepper & Almond) ($6) from Carmo’s.

Midday, it sprinkled for a time, then full-out stormed for a bit but the 2 stages of music never stopped. We returned to find Meschiya Lake and the Little Big Horns transporting the crowd to a sultrier world, free of the slick grass and trails of thick mud left after the recent drenching.

We’d really enjoyed Theaudric’s Real Clever Cuisine’s Vegan Fried Sprout of Brussels and Potatoes (with Truffle Fig Glaze) ($10) on Saturday so we returned for another serving as well as an inventive Shrimp Poboy Fatoosh (w/ Creamy Creole Remoulade) ($13) and Creme Bru Leches Bread Pudding ($7). Again, all plating and utensils were 100% compostable and bins were provided. 

Rounding the back of the Mint, I could see right away that Hot 8 Brass Band was hosting a full-on party from their stage. The band played a supremely funky version of Atomic Dog as the crowd gyrated in a soup of grass and mud. Dancing along to the beats ranging from funk and traditional brass to reggae and hip hop, I could feel my soul’s battery recharging. It has definitely been too long since New Orleanians have gotten to to be joyful together. 

Within the ranks of these brass band heavyweights, I was thrilled to see the young trombonist I’d first photographed playing with TBC Brass Band at Satchmo Fest 2018. Before the pandemic, I’d seen him learning his craft and getting stage experience with various bands so it was wonderful to him back – a bit taller and older – still working with our best. 

Kermit Ruffins & the Barbecue Swingers closed out their stage to another delighted, but decidedly less rowdy, crowd. It’s hard to know if COVID will continue to interrupt our celebratory way of life, but it was nice to gather for a  festival and enjoy days of local food and music. 

(For some reason – WordPress won’t allow my post to be in an abbreviated preview mode. Apologies for the entire post appearing in the feed.)

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Filed under Concerts, Culture, festival, Local Cuisine

Reading, Writing and Gift Ideas

Whenever I go too long between writing posts for this blog, you can rest assured I’m still writing. When I started this blog in 2009, I wrote all the time – at least a couple posts a week. Then I took a job writing for a local paper and it cut into my blogging time a bit. In 2012, I published my first book, Know Small Parts: An Actor’s Guide to Turning Minutes into Moments and Moments ints a Career with foreword by Richard Dreyfuss and endorsements from Kevin Costner and a dozen other industry luminaries. Next came Lemonade Farm, my first novel. Award winning and New York Times bestselling author Tom Franklin Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, entertainment industry, Mardi Gras 2010, shopping, Uncategorized

Krewe of Jingle Parade 2018

The Canal Street Home for the Holidays Krewe of Jingle Parade is a perfect way to kick off the holiday season. The 80 degree weather brought out a big crowd for the dance troupes, marching bands, majorettes, stilt-walkers, floats, Santa and local favorite – Mr. Bingle. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, parade, Pelicans, the Saints

Mardi Gras Museum of Costumes & Culture

I was delighted to attend the opening of Carl Mack’s Mardi Gras Museum of Costumes & Culture this weekend. It was the perfect way to kick off the first day of Carnival, especially since they had plenty of King Cake on hand. The walls displayed vibrant photos, mostly by Carlos Gonzalez, celebrating the year-round costuming culture of New Orleans. There were even a couple of photos from our wedding in a display book. I especially enjoyed when the photos were placed next to the actual costumes they captured.

The fancifully displayed costumes are the real stars of the show. The majority come from the personal collection of Carl Mack Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Culture, decorations and costumes, history

Favorite Things 2015

Better late than never, I’m finally updating my favorite Things list. First, I’d like to thank everyone who reads this blog (in over 100 countries!). Here are Your Favorite Posts of 2015:

5 – French Quarter Fest – Sunday

4 – Southern Decadence 2015

3 – Big Easy Birthday

2 – Endymion Extravaganza – My First Ball!  (your favorite post of all time)

1 – Street Musicians – Tanya and Dorise

Now to the list! The categories are: Food & Beverage, Music & Entertainment, Culture, Shopping and Giving & More.  Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, festival, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2014, Mardi Gras 2015, parade, Pelicans, shopping, the Saints

Touring NOLA, Vintage Trouble, Latin Parade and More!

Having guests is always a great excuse to hit some of those tourist spots locals tend to shy from. So when my dear friend since high school finally came to New Orleans for the first time, we “toured” the sites. Angela arrived Thursday night and we headed straight for Coop’s so she could have her first jambalaya. We stayed in to catch up that night and headed to Cafe du Monde for insanely tasty beignets the next morning. On the way there, I spotted a familiar face down the street. I said loudly, “Do you know who that is? That’s the lead singer and trumpet for Treme Brass Band!” Angela looked to the t-shirt wearing, blood-shot-eyed man holding a trumpet just as he smiled. Continue reading

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Filed under Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, festival, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, parade, shopping, walking

Favorite Things in NOLA 2013

The categories are: Food & Beverage, Music & Entertainment, Culture, Shopping and Giving & More. Anything named previously in my Favorite Things in NOLA 2012 is marked with an Asterix*. Most items have links to their site, but if you’d like to know more, use the search window on the right to find photos, videos, history and stories.

This year, I’ve added a gallery of photos. The first photos are of items listed and the last half are of stuff I love in New Orleans from Creole tomatoes to Ashley the Traffic Tranny.

I’m also revealing Your Favorite Posts of 2013.

3 – Saints Soundtrack Vol. 2

2 – Street Musicians – Tanya and Dorise

1 – Endymion Extravaganza – My First Ball! – which is also your favorite post of all time. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, festival, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2013, parade, shopping, the Saints

Favorite Things in NOLA 2012

I must confess that I didn’t get out as much in 2012 because Hollywood South is booming and I worked a lot. Even so, here are my 2012 favorites in a nutshell followed by my Favorite Things in NOLA 2011 and Favorite Things in NOLA 2010. Anything named previously in my Favorite Things in NOLA 2011 is marked with an Asterix*.

I have divided the list into categories this year including: Food & Beverage, Music & Entertainment, Culture, Shopping and Giving & More. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, festival, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2012, parade, shopping, the Saints

Walking Tour

My aunt called to say that there was a historic home in the Garden District offering free tours. The Garden District is the Beverly Hills of this city in that it’s a separate district with its own police force – though I don’t see anyone filming “Garden District Cop” anytime soon. Continue reading

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Filed under free events and lagniappe, moving, walking