This is an open-ended blog ranging from news about my latest gigs and publications
to ruminations about politics, world affairs, culture and whatever piques my interest—or ire.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014


The gig at Preservation Hall last Sunday was something special. Trumpeter Wendell Brunious led the group and really took charge on the bandstand, calling great tunes, making the announcements, telling jokes, and singing a bunch of songs (including two of his own compositions). He even did the whistling part on Professor Longhair's "When You Go to New Orleans." His trumpet playing was smart, slick, and swinging—at one point he departed from his usual style to imitate the staccato bleats and jabs of Kid Thomas Valentine on "Old Gray Bonnet." Other tunes included "Royal Garden Blues," "Bye and Bye," "Burgundy Street Blues," "When You're Smiling," "Whoopin' Blues," and "Please Don't Talk About Me" (featuring the irrepressible Ronell Johnson on trombone and vocal). A special treat was the piano work of Tom Hook, who also sang three Louis Prima songs from his "Jump, Jive, and Wail" show at the World War II museum. By the end of the night, I was energized and ready to go another three sets. I had so much fun I'm planning to go sit in with Wendell and Tom Hook tonight on their regular Tuesday gig at Dos Jefes on Tchoupitoulas. 

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