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Ziggy Marley’s reggae music follows family tradition

Photo by MALIA JAMES -- Ziggy Marley

When Ziggy Marley, son of reggae music’s brightest star, Bob Marley, performs onstage and writes songs that contain meaning and messages, he’s following family tradition. “Most of my family is musicians,” the Kingston, Jamaica, native said last week from his second home, California. “Going back to my grandmother and my grandfather, on both sides… Continue reading →

Blues and BBQ Festival returns to Lafayette Square in New Orleans

Photo provided by the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and Foundation -- Los Lobos

The Crescent City Blues and Barbecue Festival, one of New Orleans’ favorite fall festivals, returns this weekend for a three-day stand in Lafayette Square Park. Presented each October by the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and Foundation, the Blues and Barbecue Festival is a free event featuring music, food, a big arts market… Continue reading →

Contra & Square Dance set today at St. Alban’s

A Contra & Square Dance will take place 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday at St. Alban’s Chapel, at Highland Road and Dalrymple Drive in Baton Rouge. Live music will be by Back Up & Push. Dancers need no experience. A basics for beginners session will be at 4:45 pm. Admission is $6. Call… Continue reading →

Musician converts wind, sun and rain into sounds

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Musician and instrument inventor Mr. Quintron has invented an instrument called the Weather Warlock that uses temperature, light, wind, rain, and other weather sensors to make sound seen here in his home in New Orleans, La. Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014. The sound from the machine can be heard on, a website that streams the synthesizerÕs output 24 hours a day.

In 2011, a group of artists built structures that were also musical instruments on a vacant lot, a project called the Music Box. The electronic artist known as Quintron contributed a prototype of an instrument he now calls the Weather Warlock — a synthesizer that converts weather into sound. But, in a… Continue reading →

The Widowers’ Matt Sigur brings musician friends in for studio album

Photo provided by Matt Sigur -- The Widowers

The Widowers is local singer, guitarist and songwriter Matt Sigur. It’s a band, too, albeit a band composed of various casts of Sigur’s talented musician friends. Sigur distills his ’90s rock influences into “Mint Grizz,” his first full-length studio album. He’ll play an album-release show Saturday at Spanish Moon, accompanied by bassist Jonathan… Continue reading →

Katy Perry ‘Prism’ tour brings a pop rainbow to N.O. on Wednesday

Photo by CHRISTIE GOODWIN -- Katy Perry performs during her Prismatic World Tour.

The ever-changing hair colors, cartoonish stage costumes, celebrity boyfriends and a brief marriage to British comic Russell Brand — it’s all kept the buzz about Katy Perry hot since she became a pop star in 2008. Recent items about the singer-songwriter include her Muppet-red hairdo. “It’s Animal-inspired pinky-red!” reported. “KP… Continue reading →

Shows to Watch for Oct. 3-9, 3014

Photo by  CARA ROBINS -- Generationals The New Orleans-based Generationals perform Thursday at Spanish Moon. Featuring LSU grads Grant Widmer and Ted Joyner, Generationals released its latest album, 'Alix,' last week.

The Shows to Watch calendar is a listing of events taking place in Baton Rouge and surrounding areas from Oct. 3-9, 2014. It covers rock, reggae, jazz, country and everything in between. Continue reading →

St. Francisville Symphony opens Chamber Series on Friday

Continuing last season’s “Festival of the Baroque,” the St. Francisville Symphony Association will open the 2014-15 Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra’s Chamber Series concerts at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Grace Episcopal Church, 11621 Ferdinand St., St. Francisville, with a performance titled “The Guitar in the Baroque.” The performance will be preceded by a wine and cheese… Continue reading →

Richardson’s sixth album, ‘I Am Calvin’ shows off versatility

Photo provided by Ali Bianchi -- Calvin Richardson

Major record company BMG, Primary Wave Music and singing star Eric Benet’s Jordan House Records released Baton Rouge resident Calvin Richardson’s sixth album, “I Am Calvin,” this week. Richardson, a gospel-schooled rhythm-and-blues artist and North Carolina native who’s lived in Louisiana for three years, earned a Grammy nomination for co-writing the Charlie Wilson hit,… Continue reading →

Album Reviews: Blake Shelton, Prince and more

Associated Press file photo -- Blake Shelton

Blake Shelton’s public persona — a mix of smart-aleck whimsy and thoughtful sensitivity — has made him country music’s most ubiquitous male star. A full-grown man with a boyish cheekiness, his easy likability has made him a consummate award-show host, a high-profile judge on NBC’s “The Voice” and a constant… Continue reading →

Michael Cerveris talks about his tv show, his band and his love of La.

Photo by JACOB BLICKENSTAFF -- Michael Cerveris

Michael Cerveris’ many performances on stage, in film and television include his recurring role as Cook County State’s Attorney James Castro in the Emmy-winning, Julianna Margulies-starring “The Good Wife.” He also played Marvin Frey, manager of Lucia Micarelli’s Annie in “Treme.” And he won a Tony Award for his portrayal of John Wilkes Booth in Stephen… Continue reading →

Mike Zito returns to old plans, hits the road with new album

Photo provided by JILL KETTLES -- Mike Zito

Texas-based blues-rock singer-guitarist Mike Zito was busy building his solo career when the chance to form a regional supergroup presented itself. Zito had already written an award-winning song with a future Royal Southern Brotherhood bandmate, Cyril Neville. In 2010, the Blues Music Awards in Memphis, Tennessee, named their dark and swampy collaboration, “Pearl River,” song… Continue reading →

New Orleans musicians take on pregame National Anthem with reverence and a touch of nerves

Photo by Elizabeth McMillan -- The NOCCA Chorus will sing 'The Star-Spangled Banner' at the Saints home opener against the Vikings on Sunday. Front row, from left, are John Michael Bradford (horn player), Brianna Wetherington, Whitney Campbell, Garri Paul, Connie New, Lindsey Reynolds, NOCCA faculty Bart Folse. Second row, Imani Francis, Caitlin Ecuyer, Rebecca Nuss, Emily Sheets, Caitlyn Harris, NOCCA faculty Anne Sumich. Back row, David Murray, Dwight Robinette, William Van Horn and  NOCCA faculty Matt Wood.

Jimi Hendrix’s psychedelic “The Star Spangled Banner” at Woodstock in 1969. Marvin Gaye’s slow jam on “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the NBA All-Star Game in 1983. Whitney Houston’s deeply felt performance at the 1991 Super Bowl. Remarkable versions of the National Anthem can be counted on one hand, while entire web pages are dedicated to failed… Continue reading →

Too many hazy sentiments bog down McGraw

Twenty years after his breakthrough hit, “Indian Outlaw,” Tim McGraw still pushes at country music’s boundaries. His new album, “Sundown Heaven Town,” incorporates contemporary Nashville flourishes while holding onto McGraw’s signature sound — a moody, atmospheric tone developed over the years with producer Byron Gallimore. The album… Continue reading →

Jazz & Heritage Archive offering up to three fellowships

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Archive is offering up to three fellowships to support researchers who want to either use the archive’s materials or contribute to them. Jazz & Heritage Archive fellows will be awarded up to $5,000 to support their research at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Archive and at other archives, if necessary.… Continue reading →

WBRH to feature tribute to Matassa

Photo provided by the Matassa Family -- Cosimo Matassa with singer Baton Rouge singer Jimmy Clanton, whom he managed and recorded.

Baton Rouge Magnet High School radio stations WBRH-FM (90.3) and KBRH-AM (1260) will pay tribute to the late New Orleans recording studio owner and engineer Cosimo Matassa from 8 a.m. through noon, Saturday, Sept. 13. Matassa died Thursday, Sept. 11, at 88. Rob Payer, host of Saturday morning program “The Rhythm… Continue reading →

Former Black Crowes frontman enjoys a new direction

Photo provided by the Mitch Schneider Organization -- Chris Robinson Brotherhood

As frontman for the Black Crowes, Chris Robinson hit the big time in 1990 with the release of the Atlanta-based band’s album debut, “Shake Your Money Maker.” Featuring brothers Chris and Rich Robinson, the Crowes successfully revived a free-flowing, raunchy kind of rock that has its roots in blues, classic soul and early rock ’n’ roll.… Continue reading →

The Beatles: Recalling the mob scene in City Park 50 years ago

Photo by Ted Rozumalski -- Paul McCartney, George Harrison and John Lennon on stage during the September 16,  1964 concert in New Orleans.

The Beatles played their only New Orleans concert on Sept. 16, 1964. The group’s less-than-24-hour visit was by all accounts a full-tilt episode of Beatlemania. On Tuesday, the concert’s 50th anniversary, WYES-TV in New Orleans will mark the event with a performance by Beatles tribute band The Fab Four at Tad Gormley… Continue reading →

Benjamin Booker blasts the blues on new album

Photo provided by Shorefire -- Benjamin Booker

New Orleanian Benjamin Booker is a national sensation with a very low profile here. He moved to New Orleans from Florida in 2012 and played primarily small gigs, but his raw, electric blues got the attention of ATO Records who signed him, and Jack White, who took Booker on tour as the… Continue reading →

Guests to join Dr. John onstage at Joy Theater concert

Photo by BRUCE WEBER -- Dr. John

Following the release of his Louis Armstrong tribute album, “Ske-Dat-De-Dat: The Spirit of Satch,” Dr. John’s Sept. 20 concert at the Joy Theater will feature many special guests. The guest list includes New Orleans trumpeters Terence Blanchard and Nicholas Payton and drummer Herlin Riley, all of whom appear on the album. Dr. John’s music director Sarah Morrow, who did much of… Continue reading →

Rocker John Mellencamp to play Saenger March 10

Photo provided by the Saenger Theatre -- John Mellencamp's tour kicks off in South Bend, Indiana, Jan. 21, and arrives in New Orleans in March.

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer John Mellencamp will perform at the Saenger Theatre March 10 on his 2015 North American tour, with special guest Carlene Carter. The tour opens Jan. 21 in South Bend, Indiana. Tickets for Mellencamp’s Saenger show go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 19, at the Continue reading →