On Wednesday May 13 and May 20, the Radio Wave Scientists on Jazz Lunatique will celebrate 16 (YES, THAT'S RIGHT!) years on the air in New Orleans on WWOZ FM New Orleans proud to crawl home. The exact date has been lost in the shifting sand, mold, mud, and lost brain cells of time, but sometime back in May 1993, Jazz Lunatique was born. That's 16 years of late night craziness.
At least a half hour before Young arrived and as the rain was at its worst, over at the Acura stage there was a thin crowd screaming in anticipation for the Neville Brothers. The rain subsided and the crowd filled up to numbers that the New Orleans favorites deserved.
As much as I enjoy a local-heavy Jazz Fest, I couldn't turn down an opportunity to see Neil Young performing at the Fairgrounds for the first time ever. When I heard the electric buzz of just the first few chords, I got goosebumps.
This month’s recipe comes from John Besh. Born in Mississippi and raised in Slidell, he owns Restaurant August, Besh Steak, Lüke and La Provence (Mandeville), and he’s opening a new Italian spot called Domenica in New Orleans’ Roosevelt Hotel. The ex-Marine has been on "Iron Chef" and "Top Chef," and he won the James Beard award for Best Chef in the Southeast in 2006. When he’s not running restaurants, he’s a fisherman — so you know he’s handy with a Louisiana soft-shell crab.
We’ve put together a list of valuable contributors to the wildly successful 40th Annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. It takes an army of volunteers, staff and experts to pull off live broadcasts, man the 'OZ Hospitality Tent, produce Piano Night and cover Jazz Fest on the Internet. We may have missed a few names, but we love you all and truly could not have done it with out each and every one of you!!!
Conspiracy theorists unite!
This Saturday night, we will broadcast audio and music that ties Bill O'Reilly, Dick Cheney and Ray Nagin to a common missing link. Audio snippets from Voldemort, Darth Vader, Butterfly McQueen, Paul Harvey, Marlon Brando (Kurtz), Secret Squirrel, Cleavon Little, etc. provides the evidence between the usual mix of roots music I personally looted from New Orleans homes after Katrina. Tune in for the conspiracy or to hear music you once owned. Saturday midnight to Sunday at 3am (May 9-ish) on the worst show to ever modulate the electromagnetic bandwidth of 90.7 MHz.
The words seem strange as I type them, but Sunday you could really catch some of the best this festival has to offer without moving from the Acura stage. Example: Allen Toussaint sat himself at the piano and belted out a string of classics from the nearly endless collection of songs he wrote, including some great Lee Dorsey and Ernie K-Doe tunes.
With everything going on it had been a while since I visited my dependable fallback the Gospel Tent. I was greeted by the Voices of Distinction, an all-female quartet studded in sparkly green dresses. Their foot-stomping soul was an absolute blast, and it felt good to know that my faith in the Gospel Tent pulled through.
Esperanza Spalding has been exploding lately, and with good reason. Her enthusiastic and earthy character is matched by an articulate and proficient style of breezy jazz. The WWOZ Jazz Tent was certainly hypnotized, and I think more than a few crushes were formed.