Jazzfest(Pt. 3)

Fairgrounds

May 05, 2006

I didn't stick around long for Otra on the Congo Square Stage, but their psychedelic Latin jazz sated me for a few songs. It was relaxingly exuberant and polyrhythmic. Per usual, and I miss them on Frenchmen street, where they used to play once a month at d.b.a. Not so much anymore, though.

I passed by the Fais Do-Do Stage to catch the Savoy Family Band, which was a stripped-down Cajun group featuring all the usual--accordion, banjo, and fiddle.

Next up was The New Leviathan Oriental Foxtrot Orchestra. This was definetely the most interesting group I saw on Friday. The twenty man band from New Orleans has been playing since 1972. They perform everything from cakewalks, rags, rumbas, marches, and fox trots to popular music from the early 20th century. I heard a Jelly Roll Morton tune as I was walking into the heritage tent. The men were all dressed in Navy uniforms.

The highlight of the set was when theremin player Bobby Skinner performed a solo. I've seen good theremin players before, but I haven't seen someone so skilled they could replicate a melody. He had so much control that he was actually playing notes.

Eric Lindell and Company preceded the Triathlon festivities at the Fais Do-Do Stage. His music is a beautifully danceable mix of funk, R&B, and the blues. I don't remember it being that accessible, but I also don't remember him having ace lead guitarist Chris Mule in the mix, either. If you were just drunk enough, you mighta had just enough auditory ammunition to dance your ass off.

After I shotgunned a beer and ran around the track, I got some Crawfish Monica and sat down with the Keith Urban fans at the Acura stage. His country music was turning the men in the audience into women, obviously. This music was so sappy, heart-on-sleeve, and lacking in emotional integrity that I was half expecting Jake Gyllenhaal to appear beside Urban and sing a duet. Get your gay cowboy hats out, boys...


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