It’s impossible to attend all of the free music, festivals and cultural events in New Orleans, but I do what I can. This week, I got to D.J. at WWOZ, attend an Irma Thomas & the Professionals with Khris Royal & Dark Matter concert and watch a documentary on the Red Bull Street Kings battle-of-the-bands in 2010. Inspired by finally finding my pick for the new Saints touchdown theme song, Black and Gold, I called Jonny Ray of the New Orleans Movie Tours who has a regular time slot on WWOZ and asked if I could give the song it’s radio debut. I invited Phat Word, one of the masterminds behind Black and Gold and we spent the evening talking about everything from the definition of Jazz to behind-the-scenes stories of Django Unchained and Kill Bill. Continue reading
September is Hunger Action Month and what better way to help those in need (1 in 6 households) than to eat, drink and celebrate great local music at Harvest the Music in Lafayette Park! All proceeds go to Second Harvest Food Bank. This week, New Breed Brass Band opened for Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue. New Breed is a brand new brass band of young men born and raised in New Orleans who play originals and covers of traditional NOLA favorites. They may be new to performing onstage but they sounded like pros as they got the crowd moving and primed us for Trombone Shorty’s first stop on his Say That to Say This concert tour. Shorty’s latest album dropped last week and has dominated on the Billboard contemporary jazz chart. Continue reading
Those of us lucky enough to be raised by generations of Louisiana folk have been brought up eating gumbo. Yesterday, I took lucky to another level when I was asked to be a judge at Valero‘s annual fundraising event benefitting several local charities. Valero raised awareness and over a million dollars for organizations like Second Harvest and Special Olympics with their “Valero’s Got Talent” theme. When I arrived, blue-jumpsuited workers were milling around the gumbo tent sampling more than a dozen offerings. I joined judges Joseph Grey of Don’s Seafood and Ryan Gall, Executive Chef at TPC Louisiana as well as Eliza Eugene, who partners with Saints wide receiver Marques Colston (frequently found in the endzone at Saints games) in Eugene Colston Realty. Continue reading
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
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
The good news is that I’ve been very busy. The bad news is that I’ve missed all of my beloved Harvest the Music Wednesdays. Today was the last one and I was thrilled to finally rejoin the music lovers in suits or tie-dye. I ate Cafe Adelaide‘s Shrimp & Cognac & Goat Cheese Grits ($6) and resisted the dipped strawberries, cupcakes and other treats ($2 – $4) from Bittersweet Confections as well as the plentiful Abita Beer. Food and beverage sales at Harvest the Music benefit one of my favorite non-profits, Second Harvest. Every dollar can feed a family of 4 one meal. Continue reading
I continue to accumulate favorite things about New Orleans, but here’s my second year favorites in a nutshell. Anything named previously in my Favorite Things in NOLA 2010 is marked with an Asterix*. Though there are too many “ties,” revealing an inability to “just pick one,” I promise you there were so many more things I wanted to include, so many more people and places I felt deserved mentioning. Continue reading