Thursday, August 24, 2006

Local Businesses Need Our Help

I just read an article in the New York Times that really makes me shudder. The Urban Conservancy recently discussed this as well.

There are many aspects of New Orleans culture. One significant part of that is the interactions between the many small shops that made up our neighborhood economies and the people who lived in these neighborhoods. As people leave the city (or choose not to return), these small businesses are nearly at the point of closing. Many appear to be hanging on by the thinnest of threads. Once these businesses close, New Orleans will lose another significant aspect of what makes New Orleans great.

There is no doubt that Susan and I have had to move away from New Orleans. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t or don’t continue to do business with people in New Orleans. Some of my favorite places are located to the right on my favorite places in this blog. I would add the the Louisiana Music Factory, Metro Three, and Winky’s to these.

The point is—even for those of us in Exile, we must continue to support OUR local businesses—even from a distance.

They are too important to lose. Listen, folks, in my last trip to New Orleans I dumped thousands (really, thousands) of dollars in the local economy. Monthly, I spend hundreds of dollars in New Orleans small businesses. We must do what we can to keep these businesses alive.

Please, folks, do what you can to support New Orleans local business. If we don’t, noone will. Honestly. We all know what these places mean.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Four to Five Days until Help Arrived?

I am always amazed at my inner-anger these days—these “post-Katrina” days. Anyone who knows me knows I am a very easy-going guy. I guess that made me fit in very well in New Orleans. Those same people also know, though, that if we talk politics, I eventually let my emotional wrath out and am prone to engage in monologues of disgust and rage about our current “chief-executive” (I still won’t call him the “P” word—he doesn’t deserve it).

Ever since Katrina, I’m openly angry and disgusted—I’ve got Katrina attitude….

The god-damn government, through it’s total ineptitude, both in the construction of the “levee system” in New Orleans, in the immediate “rescue” of those left behind in Katrina’s wake, and the follow-up “efforts” to “rebuild” New Orleans, has left me in a state of total disgust and anger.

Get off my ass, asshole, I’m a Katrina evacuee….

I’m really pissed off now. I watched Spike Lee’s first two acts of his four act documentary last night. I can’t believe, and still can’t believe, that this happened in “America.”

The Government has taken away from me the only place I really called home. Not only that, the Government has done very little to bring my city back. The work of hard citizens is laudible, but it becomes like the efforts of those in the Superdome trying to bring order to the chaos. One, it is a ripple response in a great tidal wave of disaster. Two, at least its getting done. Three, it begs the question—why ISN’T the GOVERNMENT THERE TO HELP—QUICKLY. And, unfortunately, it really points out at the will of people to get things done in crisis, and the total failure of this government to help aid its helpless citizens.

My foreign exchange son Remzi replied that even when Turkey had the incredibly horrible earthquakes in 1999, their government responded quicker than what he observed in the documentary.

Turkey responds to natural disasters in their country faster than the US did for Katrina….


What really pisses me off could be summed up at the end of the first two-hour set where I believe it’s either Terrance Blanchard or Michael Eric Dyson said they couldn’t believe anyone (ANYONE) could support Bush after witnessing the complete ineptitude of the Katrina response. I believe he went on to say that you can add Katrina to the whole shopping list of fiascos in this administration and wonder aloud the mental health of those who support Bush today.

To paraphrase a certain mayor who will remain nameless, “pardon my French, but I am pissed off.” Again.

David walked outside with me after the documentary and was in tears. I went outside to cry alone, but there he was with me. We hugged each other for minutes. He asked how could this happen to New Orleans? How indeed….

We’ve done as much as we can do in our own individual ways to help rebuild our great city. We can’t do it by ourselves. Take a GOOD LOOK at what is going on today in New Orleans and look yourself in the mirror. What are YOU going to do to help us out? Beyond your continued good support, we need MORE from you. WE NEED YOUR HELP TO HOLD THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS ATROCITY TOTALLY ACCOUNTABLE. It could happen in your neighborhood or city when the next disaster strikes.

I am pissed off. Thank you, Spike Lee, for bringing the events of this disaster (both mitigation and recovery) into focus.

Monday, August 14, 2006

New Jazz Set for August 14

This week’s show runs from August 14 to August 21

Coming August 29—A complete “New Orleans” show dedicated in the memory of those who died, suffered, and continue to struggle in the post-Katrina diaspora

Listen in at

Artist, Song, Album
John Coltrane/Resolution/A Love Supreme
Wayne Shorter/Footprints/Adam's Apple
Joe Locke-Geoffery Keezer Group/Tulipa/Live In Seattle
Miguel Zenón/Seis Cinco/Jíbaro
Terence Blanchard/Wandering Wonder/Flow
Jeff Albert/Lunch Is The Question/One
Tito Puente/Oye Como Va/The Colors Of Latin Jazz : Soul Sauce!
Omara Portundo/Quizas, Quizas, Quizas/Viva Cuba Libre
Miles Davis/So What/Kind Of Blue
Thelonious Monk/Monk's Dream/Monk's Dream
Ben Allison/Tricky Dick/Cowboy Justice
Larry Vuckovich/Dexter's Mode/Street Scene
Donald Harrison/New Hope/Freestyle
Christian Scott/Lay In Vein/Rewind That
Horace Silver/Que Pasa/Song For My Father
Norman Hedman's Tropique/Ruddadar Dance/Garden of Forbidden Fruit
Charlie Parker/Bird Gets The Worm/The Complete Savoy And Dial Studio Recordings
The Quintet/Perdido/Jazz At Massey Hall (Live)
Charlie Parker/Night and Day/The Complete Verve Master Takes
Jimmy Smith/Messin' Around/Home Cookin'
Lee Morgan/Cornbread/Essence of Funk: Hip Bop Essence
Cyrus Chestnut/Soul Food/Soul Food
Dr. Lonnie Smith/Freedom Jazz Dance/Jungle Soul
Caribbean Jazz Project/Portraits Of Cuba/Mosaic
Elvis Costello & Allen Toussaint/Ascension Day/The River In Reverse
Dr. John And The Lower 911/Storm Warning/Sippiana Hericane
Anders Osborne/Summertime In New Orleans/Bury The Hatchet


Tuesday, August 01, 2006

New Jazz Set for August 1

Playing from August 1 to August 8
Featuring music by Louis Armstrong
In honor of his birthday on August 4

Listen in at

Artist, Song, Album
John Coltrane, Blue Train, Blue Train
Freddie Hubbard, You're My Everything, Hub-Tones
Miles Davis Quintet, 'Round Midnight, The Legendary Prestige Quintet Sessions
Brian Bromberg, Caravan, Wood II
Laszlo Gardony, Motherless Child, Natural Instinct
Louis Armstrong, West End Blues, Hot Fives And Sevens
Various Artists, Struttin' With Some Barbeque, Louisiana Armstrong: A New Orleans Tribute
Mark Elf, Chuy's Challenge, Liftoff
Ray Mantilla, Flying Home, Good Vibrations
Dexter Gordon, Cheese Cake, Go
Thelonious Monk And John Coltrane, Blues for Tomorrow, The Complete 1957 Riverside Recordings
Eric Reed, Stablemates, Here
Vincent Herring, The Song Is Ended, Ends And Means
Nicholas Payton, Potato Head Blues, Dear Louis
Various Artists, Sweet Lorraine, Louisiana Armstrong: A New Orleans Tribute
Diego Urcola, Afroraffo, Viva
Ibrahim Ferrer, La Música Cubana, Buenos Hermanos
Charlie Parker, Bluebird, The Complete Savoy And Dial Studio Recordings
The Quintet, All The Things You Are/52nd Street Theme, Jazz At Massey Hall
Charlie Parker, La Paloma, The Complete Verve Master Takes
Ben Allison, Hey Man, Cowboy Justice
Jon Faddis, The Hunters & Gatherers, Teranga
Kermit Ruffins, Ain't Misbehavin', Swing This
Various Artists, When The Saints Go Marching In, Louisiana Armstrong: A New Orleans Tribute
Louis Armstrong, Basin Street Blues, The Great Satchmo
Louis Armstrong, A Kiss To Build A Dream On, Life Is So Peculiar
Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, Summertime, The Best of Ella and Louis
Louis Armstrong, Do You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans?, Big Ol' Box of New Orleans