Krewe du Kanaval Defined the Kanaval Spirit at its Ball

On Valentine’s Day, the third annual Kanaval Ball took place at Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts, and it presented a krewe learning to grow. The first Krewe du Kanaval Ball in 2018 took place at One Eyed Jacks with co-founder and Arcade Fire member Win Butler performing under his DJ name, DJ Windows 98. Last year, the ball moved to the Civic, where Boukman Eksperyans and Diplo and Jillionaire of Major Lazer topped the bill. 

Krewe du Kanaval Returns Friday with Arcade Fire, Preservation Hall, Mia X and More

Arcade Fire will headline the Krewe du Kavanal's third annual Kanaval Ball on Friday, February 14.  Arcade Fire's Win Butler and Régine Chassagne (whose family is of Haitian decent) formed the krewe with Ben Jaffe of Preservation Hall, and it debuted in 2018 with the goal of linking Carnival traditions with their roots in Haiti’s past.

Moonlight Benjamin's an Earlier Contender for Most Exciting Jazz Fest Set This Year

Bands have been trying for years to do what Moonlight Benjamin made seem effortless. Starting with The Gun Club, countless American bands have tried to find the place where the blues and Voodoo-inflected spirituality meet. In fact, Moonlight Benjamin do more than that, but the Haitian singer and the rock band accompanying her started there with “Papa Legba” in the Blues Tent Friday at Jazz Fest.

Leyla McCalla Maps Her Musical World Before Jazz Fest Friday

On last year’s A Day for the Hunter, A Day for the Prey, Leyla McCalla situated her exploration of her Haitian Creole roots in South Louisiana, not by making Cajun or zydeco music, but by working with Louis Michot, Don Vappie and other area musicians to find a place where their ideas meet. The performances have obvious intellectual rigor, but it never comes at the expense of heart.

America By Taxi

[Updated] It’s appropriate that Ezra Huleatt’s band is named for a mode of transport. The lead singer for Black Taxi stays in motion - just back from Burning Man before this conversation, just back from a month in Haiti before that, and though the band is officially based in Brooklyn, even that sounds provisional. “I’ve been living in Brooklyn probably five or six years off and on now,” Huleatt says.

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