Viewpoint: Don’t let the latest Covid variant ruin your Jazz Fest

The thousands of tourists and locals who will attend the long-awaited New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival will surely cause an increase in cases of Covid-19 and it newest sub-variant, BA.2. A friend coming in for the festival wants to wear his mask at the Fair Grounds. While a good idea, that’s probably not very practical considering the heat and the ongoing consumption of libations at Jazz Fest and the evening events. Ensuring each attendee takes the personal responsibility to avoid infection at this mostly outdoors event is a better solution. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, reported Tuesday that the coronavirus has infected nearly 60% of people in the U.S. at least once, including about 75% of children.

Buku Music & Art Festival celebrates a decade at Mardi Gas World on Saturday and Sunday

The 2022 Buku Music & Art Festival, a celebration of the progressive subculture of New Orleans, will take place at Mardi Gras World, 1380 Port of New Orleans Place, on Saturday (March 26) and Sunday (March 27) from 1 to 11 p.m.

Residents in the Lower Garden District and Irish Channel may feel the impact of traffic. Parking will be in the Convention Center parking lots. The festival attracts about 20,000 music fans. No street closures are anticipated; however, traffic congestion is expected along Tchoupitoulas Street. Buku organizers have contracted officers assigned to traffic and perimeter detail.

Freret Street helps revive festival season on Saturday. Here’s the music lineup.

On Saturday (March 26), the Freret Street Festival will take over the popular restaurant and entertainment corridor. The six-block street party features 18 bands music on three stages (see the lineup below). The headliners include Chubby Carrier & the Bayou Swamp Band, Squirrel Queen, Erica Falls and Kermit Ruffins & the BBQ Swingers. Alongside the 46 brick-and-mortar restaurants, bars and shops on Freret, the free festival includes a food court featuring top local chefs and more than 200 arts and crafts vendors. Plus there’s a children’s area with inflatables, a petting zoo, alligator meet and greets, arts and crafts, clowns and stilt walkers.

Caravane Festival to celebrate all things French on Saturday

Alliance Française de La Nouvelle-Orléans is presenting Caravane Festival — le jour de la francophonie — on Saturday (March 19) at the AFNO Garden District home. The French language and Francophone culture is celebrated on International Francophonie Day, officially March 20, throughout France and its former colonies. AFNO invites its neighbors to participate in the international Caravane des dix mots (Caravane of Ten Words) project to promote, in partnership with Nous Foundation, the voices of Louisiana in the French-speaking world. In the Caravane des dix mots, French speakers from all over the world give their definitions of 10 chosen words, definitions that depend on one’s experience, history or even the other languages one speaks. This project is shared with French speakers from Quebec, Benin, Burundi, Egypt, Togo, China and even Belgium and Romania, who will also give their definitions of divulgâcher, décalé, ébaubi, époustouflant, farcer, kaï, méduser, pince-moi, saperlipopette et tintamarre.

Book Fest: Local authors Fatima Shaik and Michael Tisserand talk New Orleans Creole history 

Local writers Fatima Shaik and Michael Tisserand sat down Friday (March 11) to talk about “Hidden History: Black and Creole Influence and Culture in New Orleans” at the New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University. 

Shaik’s book chronicles the history of Black New Orleans through a group of free men-of-color, the Société d’Economie et d’Assistance Mutuelle. “Hidden” is part of the title because this society and its activities were unknown even though the men of the Economic and Mutual Aid Association community were significant figures in the city from the Haitian Revolution in the 1790s to the creation of jazz in the early 20th century. The name “Economy Hall” refers to the Tremé building where the association met and held events. Tisserand is the author of “Krazy: George Herriman, A Life in Black and White,” the acclaimed biography of New Orleans-born illustrator, journalist and cartoonist George Herriman, the creator of “Krazy Kat,”  a newspaper comic strip that ran from 1913 to 1944. The book investigates his life navigating — or hiding from —  the color line in the early 20th century. 

Shaik relates that she and Tisserand discovered many affinities due to their deep research and dedication to unknown New Orleans stories.

Book Fest: Local writers and photographers take it to the streets

The streets of New Orleans were among the wide range of topics covered at the inaugural New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University. The sessions were not on the potholes or the perennial roadwork, though that was discussed, too. (“The problem with the streets is that we are sitting on top of an ever-changing river,” writer Jason Berry said.) They were on the spectacle of street life in New Orleans. Two Friday (March 11) sessions — a panel called “Visual New Orleans: A City of Neighborhoods” and a talk by Berry on his film and book “City of a Million Dreams” — covered recent works chronicling public rituals in the city’s Black communities that have become emblematic of New Orleans: the second-line parade and the jazz funeral. Judy Cooper’s “Dancing in the Streets” and Jason Berry’s “City of a Million Dreams” delve deeply into these traditions — deep enough to avoid cliches and appropriation.

New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University announces full schedule for inaugural literary celebration (sponsored)

The New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University announced today its much-anticipated lineup and complete schedule for its inaugural event, which will take place March 10-12, on Tulane University’s Uptown campus. The book festival is free and open to the public. Among the national bestselling authors participating are Malcolm Gladwell, Michael Lewis, John Grisham, Imani Perry, Eddie S. Glaude, Jr., Bakari Sellers, Don Lemon, Jon Meacham, Charles Blow, Clint Smith, Cleo Wade, Sarah M. Broom and David Brooks. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. 

The event will feature 130 renowned and rising authors, including an engaging group of children’s authors, some of New Orleans’ top chefs and an all-star musical lineup. Click here to view the complete book festival schedule.

Ursuline Academy announces Fall Festival with lawn concert on Nov. 14 (sponsored)

The concert on the lawn at Ursuline Academy in New Orleans will feature three performances: The Hundreds Brass Band — The Original Pinettes — Charmaine Neville. Here in New Orleans, festivals play an essential role in celebrating our unique culture. After a year of virtual concerts and drive-by events, fall 2021 is finally gearing up for the return of live gatherings. 

Ursuline Academy is joining in the revelry with a Fall Festival on State Street featuring music, food and fun. Ursuline will kick off its inaugural Fall Festival on Sunday, Nov. 14, from 1 to 5 p.m. with a musical celebration featuring live performances from three of New Orleans’ most beloved bands.

NOLAxNOLA brings live local music to Uptown venues

A citywide event known as NOLAxNOLA (in a nod to SXSW music and film festivals in Austin, Texas) opens Thursday (Oct. 7). To help fill in the void created by the cancellation of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, it is presenting 251 concerts — maybe more, check this link — around town during the 10 days that would have been filled with Jazz Fest and performances galore in clubs and other venues. Of the more than two dozen local venues, five are located Uptown. Gasa Gasa, the Maple Leaf, NOLA Brewery, Rock ‘n’ Bowl and Tipitina’s will hold a combined 29 shows over the 10 days.