Playing with Dave Capello Trio at Open Ears this Tuesday

Dave Capello, Helen Gillet, my Chip Wilson seven string at open ears

Dave Capello, Helen Gillet, my Chip Wilson seven string at open ears

I'll be playing with the Dave Capello Trio this Tuesday the 14th of October at 10pm upstairs at The Blue Nile at 532 Frenchmen St. New Orleans.  COME OUT AND CHECK IT OUT!

Dave Capello is one of the most unusual drummers in town.  There is a reason; a background of very interesting radical theater and music situations in New York and Kansas City before his move to New Orleans 20 years ago.  I interviewed Dave a few years ago.  Surprising stuff. If you are interested in music ideas and where they come from and whether your ears are as open as you hoped you can check out the interview here...

Jeff Albert's Open Ears series has really become an event, over the years, for those still driven by music and sound.  The fact that it goes on amidst the grotesque and never ending cheapening of Frenchmen St. makes it even more of a diamond in the rough.  

This show will feature songs from the bassist, Cecile and Dave is trying to get me to do the same.  She has a wild and varied background on the Chicago music scene including long stints with Fred Anderson and Famodou Don Moye (Legends everybody- google it- get involved in what goes in your ears! Ditch the complacent attitude!))  She sings really nice.

Oh yes- improvisation will occur for those of you enraptured by this central of all music language developments.  There will be also elements of some other lines in music thinking.

Interview appearance on It's New Orleans radio show

The "It's New Orleans" radio show had me on to talk for their Happy Hour Show, which is a weekly live recorded show at The Wayfare restaurant on Freret.  It was an entertaining hour.  I even sang a song- very rare to put my voice on the air.

The talk was interesting.  The other interviewees were artist and storyteller, Marie Lovejoy, musician, Andrew Duhon, and film-maker Russell Blanchard.  Interesting conversation ensued.


Check out the show here...


Tribute to Tim Green w/ Johnny Vidacovich, James Singleton, Rex Gregory, Jonathan Freilich-At Snug Harbor Sept 28

Sadly, a major loss to the New Orleans music community happened a few weeks ago with the passing of saxophonist Tim Green.  He was to be on this show!

So come out, tomorrow night- Sept. 27th at Snug Harbor on Frenchmen St. 2 Shows 8 &10pm!

Tim was so important to my own musical development early on that kit is hard to put into words. There are luckily recordings of him playing with myself as well as all the others on this show at snug harbor.

This promises to be a great sunday evening of music.  

Johnny Vidacovich-drums
Rex Gregory-woodwinds
James Singleton-bass
Jonathan Freilich-guitar

Weekly Monday at Gasa Gasa Continues

Tomorrow from 8-10pm at Gasa Gasa

4920 Freret St


Paul Thibodeaux on drums

Devon Taylor-tuba

Jonathan Freilich-guitar


Devon is a really talented young tuba player I met in California who moved to New Orleans recently.  I think he'll fit right in.  Come check it out.  The acoustics are great. Last week was a blast.  The Panorama Jazz Band follows us. They are somethin' else!

New Orleans Klezmer All Stars show tomorrow night: "Mean" Willie Green on drums

Tomorrow night at the Little Gem Saloon 

New Orleans Klezmer All Stars for the last gig of the weekend out for the jazzfest stretch.  If you haven't been there yet.  Things have been unusual and interesting (read exciting if you need more positive detail) at both the jazzfest slot and at the Hi Ho lounge.  

Tomorrow will be no slouch as we return with our old drummer Willie Green (The Neville brothers,  Bob Dylan and other minor figures, etc.) If you haven't ever seen him play yiddish music, you are only familiar with a few of his dimensions as an innovative musical contributor.  Get out there for it! Together we are a fascinating New Orleans/World music machine.



New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars performances for tomorrow

Jazzfest-Our musical offerings for  start tomorrow, Friday April 25th.  2:50pm at the Fais do-do stage.  A great slot for hot klezmer fun in the sun!

Following that-we will be at The Hi Ho lounge on St. Claude Ave.  The show starts at 10pm and it's a double bill with the unperturbable Iguanas.  They have a new record and we have a new item for your digital devices as well.

our sets will feature the following local/global all-stars:

Ben Ellman-sax

Dave Rebeck-violin

Glenn Hartman-accordion

Joe Cabral-bass

Matt Perrine- trombone

Stanton Moore- drums

Jonathan Freilich- guitar




New Record Out: HATS- New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars Duo

The debut record by the fledgling New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars Duo is out!  You can pick it up at CD Baby and the iTunes store- (at least, when the algorithm that lists it gets around to its job.

Glenn Hartman and I are on the way to Germany right now to play a small run of concerts and get the record out to people.  The record features a fair amount of experimentation and new-ish sounds.  Get a copy!

Roundup of last weekend

Sitting in airport to Hamburg for a two week stint in Germany with the klezmer all-stars duo.  That is Glenn Hartman and I- accordion and guitar.

Still frozen in my mind was the wondrous musical night at Chickie Wah Wah on Saturday night with the James Singleton Quartet.  (Johnny Vidacovich-dr; Rex Gregory-sax,, sax; James Singleton- bass; Jonathan Freilich-gtr).  I had the feeling it went better than the previous Chickie Wa Wa show, which is really something because of how interesting that show was.

Also memorable were a couple of hits with the Washboard Chaz blues trio.  I got to revisit on the outside, a lot of the music that drives me on the inside.  And it was fun too- if not very physical- "I've got blisters on me fingers"

Before all that, in the daytime, i got to play a Tom Paines set up at the old Ironworks.  Mcmurray in good form after just having his first kid show up in the world.  Congratulations to him!

The whole trip to New Orleans was such a pleasure. Getting to visit and play with the musicians I know.  Cavort around town with all my old friends.  Back soon, of course- it's jazzfest. the Klezmer All- Stars are on at the top of the first weekend.  See you there.



Brice Miller Interview Part 3

Brice Miller1.jpg

     After a very long pause I am posting the conclusion to the interview segment of my conversation with Trumpeter/ Bandleader/ Educator, Brice Miller from the Summer of 2013.
     Brice is finishing up a degree, dissertation is complete- so partially I'd like to use this as a congratulatory gesture for his landmark accomplishment.

     (In fact, I also just completed a degree myself so I can get back to these interviews.)

    There are two other, highly recommendable, earlier segments to this interview, of course. 

In Part 3 of this interview Brice touches on the following...

Brass bands in other parts of the United States; the "mythical" Congo Square; the role of formal musical education in the development early jazz artists- Buddy Bolden; brass bands around the world; jazz funerals, 2nd lines, benevolent societies and their roles in solidifying the place of people of color in the city- the taking of it; why brass bands in New Orleans have outlived the traditions in other cities; political needs for brass bands; more on cultural mentorship, cultural capital, social capital; the relation of brass band music to other musics in the city;  Wynton and Branford Marsalis, Nicholas Payton- their start associated with the brass band tradition; being able to speak collectively; Trombone Shorty; the difficulties of talking to music press and their false ideas of what audiences will find interesting; the maligning or ignoring of intellectual sides to musicians in the press; coming out of depression after Katrina; the way that Brice's identity was used and became a caricature after the storm;  going to the University of Alabama; telling the story of real New Orleans music, and the 200 year history of brass bands, honestly; the indignity of the reduction of all narratives of people of color to slavery; the influence of personal understanding of history on personal identity development; final comments- retelling your own stories.

Believe it or not, there is a whole other more conversational and, perhaps more evocative section to this that I will post soon.

Appearing tonight with The James Singleton Quartet

tonight at chickie wah wah, canal st. (New Orleans)

around 10pm.

james singleton- bass

johnny vidacovich-drums

rex gregory- sax

jonathan freilich- guitar


this is one not to miss.

The sagacious, genius, unpredictibilities of James and Johnny. The weighted spritelinesses of Rex Gregory in creative moods. And me somewhere in the amorphous and great unknown- some sort of mid-riff.


what I'm driving at here, is killer music!  


Two shows in New Orleans this week

Solo at The Parlor on St. Claude Ave at 6pm on Wednesday- get your costumes! Music.  Drinks.

Friday Night- with the James Singleton Quartet at Chickie Wah Wah on Canal St at 10pm-

Stunning Lineup-

James Singleton- bass

Johnny Vidacovich-drums

Rex Gregory- sax

jonathan Freilich- guitar


Please come out.  Overjoyed to be back in town for an extended detour.

Further music crackdowns in New Orleans?

limitations on instrumentation. Apparently only trios unplugged tonight or risk a fine.  This is even beyond a volume restriction it's a government control over what kind of ensembles can be presented. 

Further control of expression. Soon they will overtly go after sexuality, sensuality, intelligence, the intellectuals... 

Actually, America has already done such a good deal to repress sexuality so the rest is pretty easy.   it's the great swindle- (just confuse it with porn...) then do a propagandistic switcheroo.

What has this to do with music development? Almost everything.  Stand by...I'll explain shortly.



The threepenny opera-3 more nights

Musical director for this one. And I've put together a great band. Come out to Calarts Modulor theater for a full helping of Brecht and Weill's century altering reworking of the beggars opera featuring the original orchestrations.

shows are at 8pm. 

Find out "what keeps mankind alive?"




The imperiled Crescent City- More important analysis from Nolascape

After a recent stay in New Orleans I had hoped to write an article of the sort of bizarre, disproportionate rate and direction of change that is occurring in one of the great cultural zones in the US.  There are powerful forces there who are quickly in the midst of a massive cultural dismantlement through land and property takeovers.  It's all a bit hard to sum up, but since gentrification and it's dark backlashes are a contemporary destructive problem to so many,  these discussions are important to watch.  Who wants a vapid and meaningless, consumer façade, masquerading as real life; masquerading as the real art and artifacts of existence across time?


This writer, gets to the heart of it and exposes a good deal about American economic policy that is little known at the same time.  The article is also entertaining, incase you are in that group that can't handle the laconic approach- this even partially criticizes that discursive approach (or cover for one.) 

Strange...there's something about it that reminds me of that Yossarian society business. (See the Sept,6 entry below.)  


At any rate... here is the link