By: John Wirt, Music writer - The Advocate
November 30, 2012
For the third year running, New Orleans singing star Aaron Neville is bringing his annual Christmas Celebration tour to Baton Rouge. This year, by popular demand, the Manship Theatre added a second show featuring Neville’s Christmas gumbo of seasonal and secular music.
“The shows are not totally Christmas,” Neville explained from his home in New York City. “I do the stuff that I’ve done over the years and I’ve got some new stuff to add to it. I mix it all up, sprinkle the Christmas things in. It’s always a fun show.”
Neville spoke to The Advocate in mid-November, a few days after his wedding anniversary. The singer and New York photographer Sarah A. Friedman married in 2010.
“We had a two-year anniversary this week,” he said. “We’re still celebrating.”
Friedman shot Neville’s publicity photos for his upcoming album, My True Story. She also created the project’s electronic press kit.
“It was easy for me to look good in the pictures because I was looking at her,” Neville said.
My True Story is the album that Neville wanted to do for decades. Featuring performances of mostly doo-wop songs that he’s loved since childhood, it will be released Jan. 2
“It was a perfect atmosphere,” Neville said of the sessions. “We were in the Electric Lady Studios. You could feel Jimi Hendrix’s presence there. And being there with Keith Richards and Don all these great musicians, everybody was like a family. If you listen at the record, you can hear everybody smiling. Seriously. Everybody was happy to be there doing this particular album.”
By: Alex Temple - MSTv
Its not often when you run across a show that is just so stupid, its almost brilliant. Yes, you can argue for shows like "Two and a Half Men" and maybe "Two Broke Girls," but those are sanitized American network friendly fare.
Now, I'm a huge fan of "outside our borders" television; and like us, other countries make stupid shows as well. But, their shows are far more gutsy with what they air. I'm talking about their airing smart, prime-time shows in your face, with cusses flying, sex talk rolling and some nudity tossed in for good measure. What's not to love, right?
So, now knowing what you might be missing, how would you feel about watching a high school teen comedy/horror with all the stuff I mentioned above going for it? Sound interesting? It should because it is! Think horror! Think old "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" episodes! Think even older "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure!" Throw in a little bit of "Clerks" humor, mix it all together and you get a brilliant Canadian teen sitcom called, "Todd and the Book of Pure Evil!"
Now besides being brilliantly funny, in the typical dry Canadian style of humor, the show doses out a good amount of blood and gross. It is a comedy/horror, but the emphasis is mainly the laughs and heavy sexual innuendo. This is a teen comedy after all, guys.
The show deals with your typical archetype students living in a town founded by Satanists. The loser and lead of the show, Todd, while lusting after a girl, encounters a cursed book that grants the holder their deepest wishes: the Book of Pure Evil. In the case of Todd's desire, it makes him a Heavy Metal god so he could win the girl. But obviously, things never go as expected with any use of the Book. Any use either kills, maims or generally "F's-up" anyone around it. In the first episode, the book almost massacres everyone attending Todd's battle of the bands competition. But, it escapes after his friends "break" the spell the Book placed Todd under.
By: Alison Fensterstock, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune
on 11/28/12 at 2:33 PM, updated November 28, 2012 at 5:10 PM
Applications are now available for the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation’s second Class Got Brass competition, which was introduced in early 2012 as a new element of the Congo Square New World Rhythms Festival. Middle school and high-school music programs from around Louisiana put together New Orleans-style brass bands from within their ranks to compete; winners shared more than $30,000 worth of instruments and instrument repair services for their band program.
The competition, organizers said, is intended to support music education while also promoting and preserving the New Orleans brass band tradition. Participating schools must pull together a 12-member (maximum) ensemble using instruments that are recognizably part of the parading brass band tradition; the final round of competition is a second-line parade judged by New Orleans brass all-stars. Last year’s judges included Shamarr Allen, Derrick Tabb, Trombone Shorty and others.
New elements of 2013’s contest include brass band clinics for participating schools, in which New Orleans brass musicians will offer the student players tips; this year also includes an elimination round to take place Sunday, March 3, and if necessary, another battle of the bands round before the second-line finals March 24. Competing bands this year must also include a dirge as part of their program, as well as traditional and contemporary upbeat brass tunes chosen from a list provided by the Foundation.
The contest is open to bands statewide, though last year’s top-three winners (KIPP McDonogh 15 middle school, and O. Perry Walker and McDonogh 35 high schools) all came from the New Orleans metro area. 14 additional competing schools each also received $750 worth of instruments and other supplies.
Bands may apply now at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation website. The application deadline is 5 p.m. on Friday, February 22, 2013.
Which is trickier, saving the world from a megalomaniac with super powers or trying to encapsulate the incredible career of the most famous creator in comics, Stan Lee?
The new documentary “With Great Power: the Stan Lee Story” tackles the arduous task of revealing the secret identity of a man whose name appears on over a billion comics around the world.
The team who put the film together -- writer and co-director William Hess, a Belle Chasse native, co-writer and director Nikki Frakes and producer and co-director Terry Dougas -- took six years to complete the massive project. As fans of Lee’s characters know, sometimes big things have small beginnings.
“The idea popped into my head because Stan’s office was right down the street from ours in Beverly Hills. He was literally three blocks away,” Hess said.
The recent surge of interest in comic books made Lee a prime target for a documentary, and Hess and Frakes knew what they were getting into. Their research took them all over the country in search of interviews and archives. They spoke with actors, comic book artists and even some of Lee’s co-workers from the good old days in the famed Marvel Bullpen where his greatest creations -- including Spider-man, The Hulk and Iron Man -- were born.
By Keith Spera, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune
Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert, Luke Bryan and the Zac Brown Band are slated to perform at the fourth annual Bayou Country Superfest in Baton Rouge’s Tiger Stadium, May 25-26, 2013, producers announced Tuesday morning. The Band Perry, Darius Rucker, Rodney Adkins, Thompson Square, Love and Theft and Frankie Ballard are also on the bill. Tickets go on sale Dec. 6.
The 2013 edition of the Bayou Country Superfest, or BCS, essentially follows the blueprint of the first three, with mass-appeal headliners coupled with a handful of up-and-comers. Both the Zac Brown Band and Luke Bryan appeared at the 2011 BCS, but have now moved further up the bill.
The Bayou Country Superfest is produced by a subsidiary of Quint Davis’s Festival Productions Inc.-New Orleans in association with AEG Live and the Messina Group. FPI-NO and AEG also co-produce the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival presented by Shell.
Attendance for the first BCS in 2010 totaled around 80,000 over two nights. In 2011 and 2012, it held steady at approximately 75,000. Ideally, producers would like to see the BCS grow into a destination event, where fans are so enamored of the festival itself that the talent roster does not necessarily drive ticket sales
The 2012 BCS featured Keith Urban, Carrie Underwood, Eric Church, Rascal Flatts and Jason Aldean.
By: NOLA.com-Times Picayune
For better or for worse, New Orleans has always been known for its mass consumption of alcohol, according to the Forbes website. The article goes on to say: New Orleans has become a hub for fostering entrepreneurship, so it is no surprise that innovation in the beverage industry can also be found there.
The article aslo says that New Orleans is setting trends in the alcoholic beverage market, trends that are integral to the growth of the industry. The title of the Forbes article is: For beverage entrepreneurs with a drinking problem, advice from New Orleans. That sounds about right to us.
Want to know what Forbes magazine says in reference to this issue? Read on..
For Beverage Entrepreneurs With A Drinking Problem, Advice From New Orleans
By: Adriana Lopez, Forbes.com
Alcoholic beverages have long been an essential part of different customs and occasions – from religious events and celebrations to social situations and, at times, during an emotional crisis. However, in recent years, the alcohol industry has witnessed increasing demand and growth, particularly as a result of the gradual economic recovery in the country.
Shaping new trends in the way consumers drink and choose what they drink, the beverage industry’s growth can best be evidenced through the popularity of “mixologists,” handcrafted cocktails, premiumization, new flavor offerings, and innovative products. And, at the forefront of those trends aren’t always the large, corporate leaders that have long been dominating the industry, but the new entrepreneurs, who have passion, creativity, and innovation on their side. So, where better to look for the beverage entrepreneurs setting the trends for the industry than New Orleans, where boozing and partying once dominated its past and innovation now promises its future.
For better or for worse, New Orleans has always been known for its mass consumption of alcohol. It’s where “last calls” cease to exit, cocktails are poured in to-go cups, and drive-through daiquiris stands are more prevalent than Taco Bells. Let’s be honest, there is even a street – which resembles somewhat of a debauch Main St, Disneyland – dedicated to boozing and revelry, and coincidentally shares its name with American whisky. Fun fact: Bourbon Street was actually originally named after a French monarchy.
These days, New Orleans is coming out of its hungover haze and competing with leading markets in the country within several industries, including digital media, biosciences, and film. The fun-loving city has been luring new industries with financial incentives, and retaining them with a growing workforce and high quality of life.
By Daniel Nasaw BBC News Magazine, Washington
This month, two US states voted to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana. From advertising and marketing to drugged-driving enforcement. The 6 November votes in Colorado and Washington left a lot of marijuana users happy and a lot of police officers nervous. And they set the two states up for a confrontation with the federal government, as marijuana is still illegal under federal law.
Marijuana is the most widely used illicit drug in the US. Legalization advocates say the recent votes mark the beginning of the end of the drug's prohibition.
"It's a tipping point for sure," says Sanho Tree, director of the drug policy project at the Institute for Policy Studies.
"If these two states go ahead and legalise recreational use and the sky hasn't fallen, that opens up more political space."
But authorities are wary.
"The Colorado chiefs of police are incredibly concerned with regard to public safety as a whole," says Chief John Jackson of the Greenwood Village police department, and legislative chair of the Colorado Association of Chief of Police.
Nearly 80 years after the US ended the prohibition of alcohol, we aim to answer just a few of the questions raised by the movement.
How will retailers and growers market and advertise marijuana?
The laws forbid under-21s from possessing marijuana, and Washington bars marijuana adverts from within 1,000 ft (305m) of schools, playgrounds, parks and other places children gather.
To the uninitiated, different kinds of marijuana look and smell pretty much the same and when smoked, have more or less the same effect. Once it becomes a legal consumer product, how can Washington and Colorado companies in the marijuana business build brand identity and expand their market?
"Whether it's socks or weed the first thing you have to do is look at who's your target," says Rahul Panchal, an advertising creative director in New York.
Panchal says the core market is well established: "Mid-twenties stoner guys". Those people are already comfortable smoking marijuana and are happy to buy it with minimal packaging or advertising effort.
Successful marijuana entrepreneurs will try to expand that market, for example by tapping into existing subcultures or identity groups, for example outdoors enthusiasts, health-conscious suburbanites or stressed out professionals.
An enterprising grower or retailer could develop a premium marijuana brand using high-design packaging to project an aura of exclusivity.
"Gold leaf, black background," imagines Peter Corbett, chief executive officer of iStrategyLabs, a Washington digital marketing and advertising agency.
"The packaging has a matte finish, so it's tactile and feels expensive. It would never come in a plastic bag - it comes in a linen sack."
Entrepreneurs in search of big profits should look at the dairy industry, says Panchal.
"The lowest margin is to just sell milk," he says, while the real money is in processed products like cheese and yogurt.
"I would sell pot products: cookies, brownies and such. That's where the money's going to be."
Police do not need blood tests to catch stoned drivers, says a Colorado police chief.
On Tuesday, Nov. 20, New Orleans hosts two separate benefit concerts for the Hurricane Sandy relief effort. Both feature local performers. One presents them in a sit-down setting for a $50 ticket price. The other, less formal event offers a $20 ticket in a standing-room-only environment.
The NOLA Pay It Forward concert at the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts features Irvin Mayfield, Amanda Shaw, Ivan Neville, Stephanie Jordan, James Andrews, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Mia Borders, Khris Royal, Sasha Masakowski and more. Tickets are $50 plus service charges through Ticketmaster. The NOLA Pay it Forward Fund at the Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF), established in May 2011 to assist victims of the Mississippi River flooding, will funnel proceeds to the Sandy relief effort.
A simultaneous, but unrelated, benefit concert Tuesday at the Howlin’ Wolf in the Warehouse District features a slightly different mix of music for a less expensive price. It will occupy the venue’s main stage and the smaller stage in its adjacent venue, the Den. Eric Lindell, Camile Baudoin & the Living Rumors, Susan Cowsill & Russ Broussard, the Hot 8 Brass Band and Johnny Dilks & the Highway Kind are each slated to perform a 45-minute set on the main stage, starting at 8 p.m. Narcissy, the Tangle and MADA will be on the secondary stage.