Editor’s Notes: Everyone please welcome Robert Adler!! A fellow music loving friend & writer who was nice enough to contribute some musings regarding his first weekend adventures at The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, aka Jazz Fest, to the Tiny Rager blog! Rob attended Jazz Fest, this year from Thursday, April 22, 2010 through Saturday, April 24, 2010.
I arrived in New Orleans on Thursday, April 22. The highlight of the night was definitely The Stanton Moore Trio consisting of Stanton Moore, Robert Walter, Will Bernard. Sitting in with them that evening was Anders Osborne. That was a treat!
I also enjoyed the Nevillution at Tipitina’s in da French Quarter too! Especially when Troy “Trombone” Shorty, of Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue, came and played with Charles Neville. Art (Papa) Funk showed up, but didn’t play – he killed it at the Acura stage on Saturday during The Funky Meters set. We kept floating back and forth between the Nevillution show & The Stanton/Anders set….just a perfect first night.
The brass band (above) was playing right outside of Cafe Brasil, about 100 feet to the left of the Blue Nile as you walk outside the venue on Frenchmen. That’s the vision I will have in my head and crave for the next 51 weeks until it’s go time again.
We slept in Friday day and did nothing. We heard that the rain was coming in hard and that they almost closed the festival down for the day, so we stayed in, slept, ate muffulata from Central Grocery, slept some more, etc…woke up at like 6:30pm and went full steam ahead!! The line-up for the night consisted of Dr. Klaw, Chapter 2, Galactic, Pimps of Joy Time.
Seriously, Dr. Klaw brought the dirtiest, nasty funk you crave at shows — the kind that you want to hear when you’re knee deep in a funk set and they just need to turn it up a notch so you can get your freak on! And they turn it up even more because it’s Jazz Fest and you’re in New Orleans and everyone knows it!! And that is when the magic seeps into the room. Everyone BROUGHT IT.
“Just another one of those wonderful night fest moments…This band was the perfect intermezzo between sets on 4/23, right after Dr. Klaw.”
When we got to Galactic it was 3 in the morning and the place was PACKED. I mean jammed like cattle. They had sold way too many tickets. The sight lines from upstairs and sound were terrible, so we bailed around 4:30 and went up to Frenchmen for Pimps of Joy Time. They were fun and the room was spacious; very much what we needed at the time; room to breathe. We enjoyed it and walked around Frenchmen street taking in the scene, making friends, sitting on stoops, etc…
Rob and I chatted the other day:
Did I tell you about the tuba parade at jazz fest? I was at the fest on Saturday eating some Crawfish Monica and I started to hear tuba lines….lots of them. So, I turned around and saw twelve tubas heading my way. What they done was gather all the tuba players from the NOLA community (Kirk Joseph, Tuba Phil Fraizer, Matt Perrine of Bonerama, Ben Jaffe of Preservation Hall Jazz Band etc…). They had gotten together and paraded around the fairgrounds playing their tubas!”
Saturday was awesome during day!! The clouds broke during The Funky Meters set and the sun shined with a wonderful breeze during My Morning Jacket. The Midnite Disturbers KILLED it too, on Saturday, and closed their set with the Rebirth Brass Band‘s classic, “I FEEL LIKE FUNKIN IT UP!”
I really forgot how amazing the people and the vibe is. It’s like, sure, you can see a ton of NOLA funk and musicians at gigs in New York and at musical festivals or wherever, but there IS ONLY ONE JAZZ FEST – and that’s in New Orleans. The vibe was WAY up all weekend in the clubs. You could tell the second you walked into the right venue that you were in the right place. Smiling, familiar faces, great aroma, nobody says no! It’s all…Can you move over? Yes. Can I have some of that? Yes. Can you tell me who that is? Yes. Can you please play more Clavinet? Yes. Kraz, can you come out for a 4th time to play with Vinyl? Yes.
On Sat night, for example, the vibe was so high and the selection of music up on Frenchmen was so plentiful that we actually blew off Big Sam’s Funky Nation & Dirty Dozen Brass Band to go see a band called Monophonics at the Blue Nile!! Thank heavens that we did. I saw one of the best funk sets I’ve ever seen. These guys were on fire fueled by their b3 / clavinet / organ player, Colin Brown.
These guys are from California, the Bay Area, but I hope they bless us back east with an NYC tour. Their horn section was top notch, too. They opened for Vinyl, who came out around 4am and just totally blew me away, too. They had the Monophonics horn section and their keyboard player out for about an hour during their set and all hell broke loose. Eric Krasno came out and jammed with both bands.
Jazzfest: A Whirlwind Perspective (04.22-24.10) by Robert Adler