Jazz Fest: Aerosmith Acts Its Age

Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler clearly has no plans to grow old gracefully. Saturday at Jazz Fest’s Acura Stage, the lead singer spent much of the set having an obvious, onstage squabble with the sound engineer running the monitors, repeatedly pointing angrily at the wedges in front of him and his in-ear monitor. At one point, Tyler jokingly stopped short of hitting him in the face with the base of his mic stand, and Tyler missed the pick-up in “Sweet Emotion” because he couldn’t let it go.

Jazz Fest: The Second Saturday at the Fest and at Night

Saturday at Jazz Fest ends with Cage the Elephant and Aerosmith opposite each other at the Gentilly and Acura stages. One rocks; one used to rock. Cage the Elephant has never sounded as gloriously decadent as Aerosmith in the ‘70s, but neither has Aerosmith since the ‘70s. I realized at one point in their 1980s comeback that I cared more about what happened to Alicia Silverstone in their videos than the songs themselves, and that was that.

Jazz Fest: Saturday's Best at the Fest and the Clubs

Saturday at Jazz Fest, Rod Stewart tags in for Aretha Franklin. I give Stewart credit for aging into the Great American Songbook--even if I don't want to hear him sing those songs--but when he last played Jazz Fest in 2007, he closed with "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy." That might be a question that the then-62 Stewart wondered in his heart of hearts, but making it his final statement/question to the audience made him seem desperate and shallow.

New Orleans Sings Along at Christmas Time

[Updated] According to singer Judith Owen, Christmas has two sides—“Bloody awful and wonderful,” and both are represented in Christmas songs. When sung together, they’re shared expressions of community, but “they're all about yearning,” she said in 2012. “They're about missing home. They're about missing people. Songs like 'White Christmas' and 'The Christmas Song' are about yearning. 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas' is one of the saddest songs I've heard in my entire life."

Big Freedia Dreams of Santa, She & Him Replace Mariah, and R. Kelly Dreams of Mrs. Claus

Last week, we considered the place Christmas recordings occupy in the careers of artists, looking at new Christmas albums by Andra Day, Jon Batiste, Kacey Musgraves, Leslie Odom Jr., and Jordan Smith. Today, we pick up the spare with quick looks at a number of positive additions to the library of Christmas sounds. 

Not surprisingly, the most audacious new release comes from Big Freedia.

Merry Christmas from Big Freedia, Albert Ayler, Michael Angelakos and My Spilt Milk!

“Let’s get everyone super-fucking-Christmas-y,” Chris Hardwick said to start in interview with Zoe Deschanel and M. Ward of She & Him on “The Nerdist” podcast. They talk some about Christmas and play music from their Christmas Party album, but I’m not sure their conversation about the difference between Portland and Los Angeles gets me in the mood.

Nola Mix Drops an Anniversary Mix

Earlier this summer, we talked to DJ Yamin, Quickie Mart, and Tony Skratchere about NOLA Bounce Breaks, Vol. 1 at NOLA Mix Records. Yamin runs NOLA Mix, and the story ends with video of him scratching live with the bounce beats EP, showing off how it could be used. At the time of the story, the EP was almost sold out. Now, a limited edition colored vinyl in on sale as well.

Lil Wayne Points Festival-Sized Middle Finger at Cash Money

The animosity between Lil Wayne and Bryan “Birdman” Williams has been intense and well-publicized. It started (or at least moved into the public eye) in December of 2014, days before Tha Carter V was set to drop, when Wayne accused Williams of delaying the completed album’s release. “I am a prisoner and so is my creativity,” he said, claiming he wanted out of his contract with Cash Money Records, but wasn’t allowed to leave.

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