The good news is I haven’t had time each day to get online and upload pictures and such and even now I’m just going to dump raw notes and maybe come back to it later:
large iced café au lait
…to Blues tent to grab seats, then back out for…
crab cake and seafood mirliton casserole with smokes jalapeño tomato tartar sauce
Henry Butler with a seven-piece band (keys, bass drums, guitar, tenor or alto sax, trumpet, and percussion). Got good pix. Here’s one:
Tent is packed. We met Rosie, the percussionist, last night. Henry announced Rosie’s daughter’s ninth birdthday from the stage… Several tunes from his latest CD on Basin Street Records, The Game Has Just Begun, including “Hi-Heeled Sneakers,” then a rollicking “Big Chief,” the Earl King tune generally associated with Fess, then “Iko Iko” with a strong Bo Diddley beat, then another Mardi Gras song (“If you go down to New Orleans/You ought to see the Mardi Gras/etc.,” which I first heard performed by the Dirty Dozen Brass Band). At this point s says Butler doesn’t need to be playing all these Mardi Gras songs, but they’re all crowd pleasers, especially for the out-of-town crowd, and he probably didn’t have to rehearse much with the band to do this gig. Next comes “Rockin’ Pneumonia” with a Mozart-in-ragtime interlude.
Then we heard some of the Plastic System Band of Martinique, a carnaval parade group with a neverending groove (think the D.C. Go-Go style).
large unsweetened rosemint tea
Next, a brief stop in the Economy Hall tent for the New Leviathan Oriental Foxtrot Band, which b loved, since it reminded her of cartoon music from her childhood. She snapped a few pictures of them:
Then off to the grandstand, where the bathrooms have been rededicated, three out of four, for women, but women still lined up in a long line for the one ladies room on the right side, not knowing there were two more available at the other end.
During a brief count-the-change snafu in the line for the oysters, we heard some of Glennys Rogers and then Star Nayea and Aniyu on the Lagniappe stage. They were generous with the oysters, giving us two to eat while they shucked another fourteen, more than a baker’s dozen, for $6.50.
For a brief slideshow, click on the picture of the half-eaten try of oysters:
We wandered over to the very crowded Acura stage for the last tune by the recently reunited subdudes, then popped into the Jazz tent for the end of Donald Harrison presents Indians Blues Revisited (Harrison is a jazz musician – he was in Art Blakey’s group with Terence Blanchard when they took over for the older Marsalis sons – but his father was a Mardi Gras Indian chief and he is strongly into fusing his various genres with jazz).
large cochon de lait po’boy (really good!)
large unsweetened rosemint tea
Finally we settled in for Cassandra Wilson‘s set in the Jazz tent. She looked somewhat pregnant and very happy. As usual her band played acousticky, folk-style instruments (her lead guitarist plays a hollowbody and played banjo on one tune, her bass player plays a stand-up bass). Her voice is a strong and sonorous as ever. She lead off with “Lay Lady Lay,” did a couple of Joabim tunes, a Dinah Washington song (“Sail On”?), an Abby Ross song, “Drunk Like Cooter Brown” from her first record, and for an encore she did a cool reinterpration of the Monkees’ “Last Train to Clarksville” (by Neil Sedaka, if I’m not mistaken):
The weather was probably the best we ever had, cool and dry for the most part. At the end of the day a few stray fluffy clouds dotted a clear blue sky: