Book Signing and Weekend Shows

TVD is off for the July 4th holiday, but I wanted to let readers know about what’s happening this weekend including a very special event featuring free beer!

I will be signing copies of my latest book, Up Front and Center: New Orleans Music at the End of the 20th Century at NOLA Brewery Friday afternoon between 2-3:30 PM. The signing is in conjunction with a weekly tour and tasting that the brewery hosts. So come on out, get your copy of the book and drink a beer with me. Click the link if you are out of New Orleans and want a copy.

Gambit is the latest publication to feature Up Front and Center: New Orleans Music at the End of the 20th Century in their pages. Penned by Entertainment Editor Will Coviello, the article is the most in-depth look at my book to appear in print so far. I did a phone interview with Coviello and he reveals some interesting facts about the gestation of the tome. You can read it here.

Friday night, the guitarist Marc Stone returns to the Maple Leaf Bar for the first time since before Hurricane Katrina and the swamping of the city. I know that seems hard to believe since Stone’s blues-based grooves are tailor made for the roots music mecca on Oak Street.

Saturday night, the Panorama Jazz Band plays their regular 6-10 PM slot at the Spotted Cat. I caught the first set last weekend and highly recommend checking out this band. With accordionist Walt McClements from Why Are We Building Such A Big Ship? and Aurora “How may bands is she actually in?” Nealand (pictured) on saxophone, the group makes a mighty racket. Led by clarinetist Ben Schenck, the Panorama tore it up on several songs that had the crowd grooving.

Finally, I can’t ignore the elephant in the room even though the offerings at the 18th annual Essence Music Festival have slighted New Orleans musicians again. Though it is refreshing to see Ledisi, a home grown entertainer on the main stage, the SuperLounges are woefully short of local talent. Held every Fourth of July at the now-known-as Mercedes Benz Superdome, the festival used to show some respect for local acts. Now we seem like a footnote.

Note to city—next time you renegotiate the deal with Essence, how about some local funk or brass on the main stage? Can you imagine how all those out-of-town folks would react to seeing Trombone Shorty or the Rebirth Brass Band (they are booked in one of the SuperLounges) before the latest flavor or oldies hitmaker?

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