Wednesday – April 30th
‘Softly, deftly, music shall caress you. Hear it, feel it, secretly possess you.’ – The Phantom of the Opera
I am a number of days behind with my posts. After Jazz Fest it is hard to come home and start typing. I have just been showering and then recuperating, it is tiring having fun ya’ll.
So let me catch up.
Breakfast again at Envies’, they are getting to know me know which is cool. Another nice day with a cooling breeze. As I was walking down to Envies’ an older man sweeping the sidewalk out the front of one of the nice creole homes on Governor Nichols Street said to me as I was about to pass ‘you know people just walk on past me not even saying what a nice day it is’. Well I took the opportunity to stop and talk. He would be in his 70’s and African American. It was worth stopping. He asked where I was from and then gave me an insiders’ insight into the history of this block. He told a few stories and laughed continually while clapping me on the back. I could not understand a lot of what he was telling me but I laughed along with him. I think he enjoyed just talking and taking time out from looking after his little patch of sidewalk.
I sat out on the balcony for a few hours talking to Mickey and watching the people go by. A well-dressed guy said hello as he went by eating his sandwich. Just as he passed us a Quarter Punk coming from the opposite direction stopped the guy and asked if he would give him half of his sandwich. The Punk was pretty aggressive (which is not the norm). He then spotted Mickey and I and asked us for change. He then stopped right in front of me and again asked for change. I said no and he then said ‘if you give me 11 cents I will show you my dick’! Now there was an offer that made be recoil in horror. 11 cents is a lot of money and I was not even wearing my Easter Bonnet.
It will be my last opportunity to go down to Lafayette Square for the free music session tonight. The first band on where called Gravy and I enjoyed their set. (and scored a free C.D.) One of the saxophone players in the band looked familiar. After a couple of songs I remembered seeing him play with a favourite band of mine called the Creole String Beans. To date I have not seen them play this trip. I was standing in the artists area (thanks again Stew) and spoke to the guy I recognized. He remembered Wendy and I from last year and told me he was rushing off for a gig with the ‘Beans’ at the Rock ‘n’ Bowl and he said he would put my name on the door. I hung around for the next act the Eric McFadden Band. As it started to rain I hailed a cab for the 10 minute drive to the ‘Bowl’
The Rock ‘n’ Bowl is one of the premier music venues in town. It is a venue, come bar and bowling alley all in one. Where else can you listen to a live band and hear bowling balls making their way down the alley? I told the door bitch that my name was on the door and it was, oh yeah. I had a great time. Not an overly big crowd which made it comfortable. I have been to this venue during the Jazz Fest weeks and it normally is shoulder to shoulder standing. Met some people I recognized from last year’s Jazz Fest Blues tent and hung out with them. The band was setting up when I arrived and the Bass player came off the stage to welcome me back which was nice. Once the music started most people were up dancing doing the old rock ‘n’ roll moves. The sort of dancing that is well beyond my clumsy steps. Most of the dancers seem to know each other and it is very much a local crowd. I even got asked to dance a couple of times but humbly declined. This is a music night not a comedy night. There is a bit birthday party going on with cake and singing.
I got home at 1A.M. which was not a good move seeing Jazz Fest starts at 11this morning.