In 2013, I did a fairly exhaustive search for the best local songs to replace Atlanta-based Ying Yang Twins Halftime (Stand Up and Get Crunk) as the Saints’ touchdown song. VIDEO. I offered links to dozens of videos written and performed by local musicians. The ultimate superfans in my estimation, they pour their team spirit into songs and videos that take money and oodles of time to produce. And they do all this with little chance the music will turn a profit.
But a funny thing happened on the way to the playoffs. The Saints players have taken over the soundtrack inside the Superdome. In particular, carpool mates Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara along with Michael Thomas have fallen in love with old New Orleans rap and the crowds in the Dome couldn’t be happier. Apparently, Ingram introduced Kamara to the songs and artists while driving. When the three danced to Choppa’s 2003 local hit Choppa Style, the Superdome went bananas.
The moment went viral nationwide.
My family is from Louisiana for generations on both sides but my path home was winding. After living in Maryland, Washington D.C., Japan, Alabama, New York and Los Angeles, I finally moved to New Orleans in late 2009. And I’ve never been happier. When I got here, the Saints were on their way to winning the Superbowl and the city was vibrating with optimism. Most of the people who would come home after the Storm were back. Katrina money was being spent on street repairs and schools were getting instruments from places like Tipitina’s Foundation. Buildings, homes, t-shirts and more exclaimed, “Believe” and “Renew, Rebuild, Rebirth.” It was intoxicating. Continue reading →
Football has returned to the Superdome with the Saints preseason game against the Titans. But this year is different. After 8 years on the waiting list, my newlywed-husband’s season tickets finally came through and we have a new address – a seat, row and section in the Dome. It got me thinking again about why football matters. As they unfurled the giant American flag, I was proud that football is a uniquely American sport. The whole world agrees that “football” is soccer and that soccer is a way better game, but every time I see those helmeted gladiators take the field, I swell with pride and excitement. Continue reading →
If you’ve read this blog’s ABOUT page, then you know that one reason I moved to New Orleans after 18 years in Los Angeles was to find my mate. “I followed my heart here. My gut told me that everything I was looking for, denying myself while I furthered my career, was right here where I always wanted to be.” I met Andy at the Lost Love Lounge (yes, really) 8 months after moving here and we’ve been slowly walking toward the altar ever since. A few weeks ago, we finally tied the knot – New Orleans-style with everything from DancingMan504 and The Roots of Music to the Pussyfooters and “The Dude” (okay, he’s not New Orleans, but he abides everywhere). Continue reading →
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.
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 →
I’ve been searching for a new Saints anthem to replace the Ying Yang Twins Halftime (Stand Up and Get Crunk)since pre-season when it became obvious the rumors were true – getting Crunk is on its way out at the Superdome. I scoured the web for a song as inspirational to fans and the team (and as menacing for the opposition) as Halftime. I wanted the song to be by locals and have horns, Who Dats, a universal dance beat and something to chant. After presenting over a dozen options in my posts Saints Soundtrack and Saints Soundtrack Vol. 2, I have found my very clear winner. Continue reading →