Jazz Fest or Rain Fest?
My Jazz Fest has been so different this year. It has thrown me off a bit. I haven't taken many pictures so far, mainly because of the rain. Two days of rain hasn't made it real pleasant at times. For the sake of music we endure it.
Friday I got out the fest later than planned. I grabbed the only thing that has been customary for starting out the fest, crawfish bread and a Miller Light and headed over to the Fais Do Do stage. Caught a part of the Zydepunks before going over to Congo Square to browse the wares for sale. I kept running into people I know, so before I knew it, it was time to head on over to see Bonerama being interviewed by David Fricke (of Rolling Stone). It was a great interview laced with some music. Hearing the bones blast away the paddock area at the Fairgrounds was just amazing. The sound bounced of the walls and just filled the space up with the brassy ballsy music that is the Bone. Best quote of the whole interview was when Craig said that Mark learned how to dress and do his hair from Harry Connick Jr. Oh and of course when David kinda forgot that Bonerama DID have a guitar player. After the interview I had to check out Robert Plant and Alison Krause. She has the most beautiful voice. Someone said to me later that it reminded them of a mother singing lullabies. Robert? Well come on now. He is Robert Plant.
After that I bid the fest a fond farewell for the evening. I had to head on over the hotel where the manager was staying and count out some merch and get it organized for the evening. First up for the Boneramas was an artist/musician reception in the Quarter. Jamie Hayes is a local artist who has done up a rather funky and fun print for Bonerama. It is being sold at Jamie's gallery and also at the shows. The boys and Jamie signed a bunch of posters and mingled with fans. I sold a few cds and the new t-shirts that have the print on them. The best moment had to have been the one captured in the below pic:
I think George Porter Jr was happy to have one of the prints in his hands. I won't be surprised to see a George one soon. There will be another reception this Friday, May 2nd at the gallery as well. After that it was time to get everyone to Chickie Wah Wah, and blow the joint down. I was designated to sell merch in the little patio area that has just been finished.
I was quite glad the rain held off that evening.
Saturday I started out helping out WWOZ with will call, then made it into the fest just as the rain came down. We stuck it out though. Saw some Jon Cleary, Dr. John, Cowboy Mouth, Robert "Wolfman" Washington and then to the very shortened set for Paul Sanchez.
The picture turned out dark because, well it was DARK out already!! It was pouring and there was thunder and lightning. Paul only played 3 and a half songs. And let me tell you, it was the best 3 and a half songs that I heard all day. Everyone on that stage wanted to play for those fans that stayed and they gave it everything they had. Matt Perrine set the mood, as he came from the dressing room area you could hear him coming down the corridor playing "Singing in the Rain" by the time he got to the stage the crowd was cheering. It was one of the most fantastic musical moments for me. Something so simple. Craig saved us from having to stay out longer at the fest waiting for another ride, he just rocked the world last night. I was able to squeeze in a short nap before heading to the Maple Leaf. Not my most fun night there. I was selling merch out in the back bar area. It as so crowded, I got stepped on, hit in the face (it was an accident) drink poured down my back, and stepped on some more. It kinda sucked. Not the music just the whole atmosphere. It was too crowded for my liking. I didn't end up getting home until after 4:30 this morning. I stayed for about 5 songs of George's set at the end of the night and it was still packed when I left. Not as packed but enough.
This morning I was at the fest again to help out WWOZ, made it in before the rain hit again. I only caught two acts today. Leroy Jones and Gregg Stafford. It was dry in the Economy tent, just the way I liked it. The music was killin and had people second lining through the crowd. You make the best of what you can do. Like Mr. Phluffy did.
I mean no other man I know can pull off that much pink and still be straight. Seriously. I left shortly after Gregg's set to get merch ready for this evening's festivities. Nope no Bonerama tonight. Tonight it is PBS' turn and let me tell you...I am ready to hear some of their funky music. Almost craving it. But not until I catch a nap.