Lizzo Brought The Fillmore To Church

Lizzo wants her live shows to be church, and her sold out show at the Fillmore on September 8 was exactly that. At the center of the stage was an altar, with orange lighting washing the stage. As the smoke built and dissipated, out walked Lizzo, dressed in a shimmery gold robe like that of a gospel singer. While the crowd’s excitement built, she started her set with “Heaven Help Me” and began her work of bringing the audience to worship.

Lizzo Challenges Critics, But She Doesn't Need To

Lizzo has made her name for by loving herself and forcing everyone else to follow suit. Her message is one of aggressive self-empowerment, and it has given voice to many people who never see themselves represented in mainstream pop culture. She’s incessantly positive about her size, gender, and race because she exists in an industry and world that proves she must be. She’s is setting a lot of firsts, and in order to normalize the things she wants to normalize, she must be relentless.

J Balvin Introduces Jazz Fest to Reggaeton

I was thinking a lot this weekend about things you never see at Jazz Fest, and I got two more on Sunday. A fan somehow snuck a portable speaker in—portable speakers are not on the Kermit Ruffins-voiced list of prohibited items we hear when entering Jazz Fest!—and played reggaeton in the audience before J Balvin’s set began at the Gentilly Stage. It was great to see people start their own party with their own entertainment, just as it was great to see four girls rush the stage to hug Jack Antonoff during Bleachers’ set before Balvin.

New Orleans Makes its Presence Known at South By Southwest

Of the hundreds of bands that played in Austin last week, only 14 New Orleans acts performed at official South By Southwest showcases. But these acts—along with a few other Louisiana bands and yet a few more who played unofficial shows—provided a vivid, if incomplete, music industry State of the Union for our little sliver of Planet Earth.

Lake Street Dive Finds Balance in Hard Times

Lake Street Dive still makes love songs, but that’s not all it makes anymore. For 14 years, the band has made its name by singing conventional, relationship-oriented subject songs in classic-borderline-retro forms. It has let its technical chops subtly signal the band’s jazz leanings, and singer Rachael Price’s voice can silence all doubts.

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