The Revivalists
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Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

After Hours

Hello, friends! Rob here.

Well, there you have it. Another Jazzfest come and gone. How was yours? Sorry if I didn’t see much of you, but I promise, it’s because I was doing mostly cool stuff.

It’s hard for me to favor one day out of the ‘Fest, as Friday and Saturday of this previous weekend were both absolutely extraordinary. Friday was our second year playing at our friend Chris Rogers’ annual Jazzfest crawfish boil, which, as promised, turned out to be the social event of the year. Like the free-flowing Abita Strawberry and the food and crawfish provided by multiple caterers (still talking about a private party), the live New Orleans music lasted all day, with acts ranging from your friends The Revivalists to a hip-hop project helmed by drummer Jamal Battiste to the Dirty Dozen Brass Band (yes, actually that), with some star-studded jam sessions and a surprise walkthrough by the entire Roots of Music marching band in between.

As with last year, the musical highlight of the evening (excluding, of course, the Roots of Music, which is ineligible for fair competition on the grounds that nothing in the world will ever be cooler than encouraging kids to play music) was probably bass monster Bill Dickens. I’m sure I was raving about the guy around this time last year as well, but it really is awe-inspiring to watch him blast world-destroying solos out of what appears to be a cross between a bass guitar and the fabled Stark family greatsword, Ice (seen here totally ruining someone’s day).

Saturday, we had a late show at Tipitina’s French Quarter with Theresa Andersson and Brass-a-Holics. Between sound check and our set, I visited Cafe Prytania to catch the first act of a fantastic Blue Party/Mississippi Rail Company double-header. I had to get back down to the Quarter before Blue Party came on, but MRC was nothing but fire.  Their set ranged from old-school boogie-woogie to modern folk revival, and they were gracious enough to have me onstage to play a few New Orleans standards with them.

An hour later and back downtown, it was great to see Theresa Andersson’s new thing. Considering her often minimalistic, DIY one-woman-band approach, it was cool to see Theresa backed by a band that could probably be considered a small orchestra, including a six-piece horn section and a lot of familiar faces from the indie scene here in New Orleans. After our show, I sped over to Tipitina’s to catch my third Galactic show of the festival season, and arrived just in time to jump up onstage (alongside Ed’s hero, Roosevelt Collier) for a few songs.

SIDEBAR: This whole “being able to see Galactic a lot” thing we’ve got going is pretty great. I’ve probably seen them about ten times since the tour last fall, and it’s really impressive that they can maintain such a consistently high level of performance while keeping things fresh and organic. I find that one of the biggest challenges in live music is simply being able to fire on all cylinders at all times without just playing the same fifteen songs every show, and it’s really beneficial to be able to get so close to a band who does that so well. Thanks dudes. Also Chrissy. Who is not a dude.

So that was my weekend. Sorry I can’t speak too much to what some of the other Revivalists got up to, but I spent most of my Jazzfest after hours in different places, and I have already exceeded my quarterly allotment of speculative band fiction, so that’s going to be it for today. Thanks for coming!

This week, in a booking decision that has been heralded by booking decision critics as “unnecessarily confusing,” we’ll be playing the Hangout on Thursday. No, not Hangout Festival, which we’ll also be sort-of playing next Thursday at the official kick-off pre-party, but The Hangout, which is a venue in Gulf Shores that has ties to the festival. So, if you go to something in Alabama with “Hangout” in the name on either of the next two Thursdays, you will have a chance to see us play, depending on when you show up! More specific time-related details probably exist somewhere, I bet.

Friday and Saturday, we’re doing one of those classic weekend stands at Bamboo Willie’s in Pensacola for funsies. Unfortunately, it’s not the start of an eight-month-long residency or anything like that, but we simply can’t afford to spend half of the 225 days left until the end of the world at Bamboo Willie’s. Pensacola holds a special place in our hearts though, and rest assured we won’t be strangers.

And hopefully you won’t, either! Have a good week, everyone!

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