It's been over three decades since St. Martinsville native Nathan Williams embarked on a musical career with the Zydeco Cha Chas. It's been quite a ride, with performances at the Grand Ole Opry and Lincoln Center, a Big Easy award as Best Zydeco Band, and the Zydeco Music Association's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012.
WWOZ will be airing highlights from the 2013 edition of the Jazz Foundation of America's "A Great Night in Harlem," on Wednesday, September 3 from 4-5p. This highlights show includes performances by Macy Gray, Nicholas Payton, Henry Butler, Jonathon Batiste, John Hunter, Elvis Costello, among others.
The Ponderosa Stomp's "Unsung Heroes: The Secret History of Louisiana Rock n'Roll" exhibit at the Cabildo will be up through September, but it will close shortly thereafter. It celebrates Lousiana's formidable contribution to American music. Our state's blues, R&B, soul, rockabilly, swamp pop and garage artists played a significant role in shaping popular music and culture.
Last month, during Essence Fest, NPR Music arranged to meet contemporary R&B star Jazmine Sullivan at the Clear-Vue barbershop, on South Rampart near Canal, for a "field recording" session. Interrupting a conversation about college football, Sullivan quickly won over the all-male audience with her performance a brand new song called "Stupid Girls".
This week's episode of New Orleans Calling is entitled "The Love of Your Life. New Orleans is a city of great mystery and attraction -- and for many people, it's the love of their life. Some visitors to New Orleans plan to stay for a week, but stay a lifetime. This week we listen to love stories and songs about the Crescent City -- from both native New Orleanians and those who found their way here, with music by Dayna Kurtz, John Boutte, Paul Sanchez, Susan Cowsill, Lonnie Johnson, and many others.
For your weekend viewing pleasure: a vintage 1975 Madrid show by Ray Charles and the Ray Charles Orchestra. The show begins with an extended instrumental set by the Orchestra, with the genius himself taking the stage at about the 30-minute mark. The Orchestra is excellent, but feel free to skip ahead.
Indie-roots-bluegrass folkies the Avett Brothers perform "Souls Like the Wheels" live in the attic of their headquarters in Concord, North Carolina last December. The song first appeared on their 2008 EP The Second Gleam; a live version appears on their most recent album, Magpie and the Dandelion.
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation's free music school, the Don "Moose" Jamison Heritage School of Music, is accepting new students ages 10 to 17. Come to the auditions on Saturday, September 13, 10a, at Dillard University to get in that number.