Looking Ahead to Buku and Lana, Toro Y Moi, Ella Mai and KKB

The Buku Music and Arts Project released its lineup during the holiday season, and its update came close enough to Jazz Fest’s announcement of The Rolling Stones that the news got lost in the shuffle. This year, Buku will feature Lana Del Rey, Dog’s Blood (Skrillex and Boys Noize), A$AP Rocky, Toro Y Moi, Excision, and many more when the festival returns to Mardi Gras World March 22 and 23.

Rolling Stones are Quint-essential Jazz Fest

Before Tuesday’s announcement of the lineup for the 50th anniversary edition of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival presented by Shell, photographers crowded close to get shots of festival producer Quint Davis welcoming Mayor LaToya Cantrell. The greeting was official and cordial, but it also served as a reminder that Jazz Fest isn’t simply a musical or cultural event.

Galactic's Ready Already with Princess Shaw

The 2016 documentary Presenting Princess Shaw (available on Netflix) tells the story of Samantha Montgomery, a New Orleans medical technician who becomes an online celebrity in part for her YouTube vlog, which documented her thoughts as she tried to start a career as an R&B singer, and because of her appearance in a video by an Israeli artist who combined in DJ fashion musical videos that he found online to create a new song from people who had never met.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra Specializes in the Wow Factor

The lighting rig that hung over the members of Trans-Siberian Orchestra at the Smoothie King Center Wednesday night could serve as the New World Order Olympic rings—seven, not five, close together but not interlocking, each with an LED square inside. Three songs into the set, the rings surprised the crowd when the LED squares inside the front three lowered to bring band members including violin player Asha Mevlana to the stage.

The Internet Finds Its Crowd In New Orleans

I saw The Internet almost exactly one month before its performance in New Orleans when it opened for Gorillaz in Chicago, and I was one of the only people around me who knew the band’s music. That night, I got side eyes for knowing and singing along to its songs, but at the House of Blues recently, The Internet’s fan base was devoted. The outpouring of love and energy was unlike anything I’d ever seen, and it was clear that band members were surprised as well.

An Intimate Night With Mac DeMarco

Mac DeMarco stood alone in a rusted gazebo in the center of the Music Box with a wide, lopsided stance, cigarette dangling at the corner of his gap-toothed grin. The sharp November wind rustled the trees around him. “Everyone remembers where they were when Michael Jackson died,” DeMarco reminisced, out of the blue. “I was in the shower, had a good cry.” Hordes of jean jacket-clad Millennials surrounded him, giggling. After the brief anecdote, he digressed: “Anyway, this one is called ‘This Old Dog.’”

Mars Willams Maps the Way to an Ayler Xmas

Christmas music often comes with a strong undercurrent of nostalgia as the songs evoke times that seem simpler in retrospect. That isn’t an issue for Mars Williams’ Ayler Xmas project, which steers into the heart of the tensions and uncertainties of improvised music based on pieces of adventurous Black art from the early 1960s.

Simple Minds Still Play to Arenas, Even in the Saenger

What do you do on an election day when you’re too anxious to watch the returns and too anxious to watch something else instead? On Wednesday, Simple Minds at the Saenger Theatre were that third option for me, and at times it was hard to separate the show from its context. Singer Jim Kerr sang, “make love your armor” in the opening “The Signal and the Noise,” and I wondered if there were people in America who could no longer do that. Was the uplift in the band’s sound beyond some people at this point?

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