Archive for The Meters

Fat Tuesday Video Du Jour: Dr. John, Earl King & The Meters

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , on February 12, 2013 by 30daysout

Did you catch Dr. John’s freaky getup during the Black Keys’ appearance at the Grammy Awards? Mac Rebbenack, in his guise as “Dr. John the Night Tripper” has always been one sorta strange cat – his records in the late 1960s were pretty bizarre and when you consider the period, that’s saying a lot.

DrJohn

Dr. John at the Grammy Awards.

But Dr. John is probably the king of New Orleans piano players (Art Neville notwithstanding) right now. In this video Dr. John, the Meters and Earl King lay down a funky slab of Crescent City, in the form of “Big Chief,” the tune popularized by the former king of New Orleans piano players, Professor Longhair.

Fun fact: Earl King (the dude in the yellow doing the singing) actually wrote “Big Chief.” King is also the composer, of course, of New Orleans standards “Trick Bag” and “Come On,” which he recorded, as well as Lee Dorsey’s “Do-Re-Mi” and Willie Tee’s “Teasin’ You.” King died in 2003, and Professor Longhair died in 1980.

Happy Mardi Gras, ya’ll! Don’t forget: Check out our Mardi Gras playlist from last week.  And, you can tune in to real-time live webcams for a ringside seat to the madness and Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans.  NOLA webcams

It’s Mardi Gras Time – Again!

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , , on February 4, 2013 by 30daysout

Editor’s Note: This is a repost from last year, or the year before – whatever.

Mardi Gras is the final big blowout before the period of fasting and sacrifice called Lent.  Fat Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, is the end of carnival season and the final day you can indulge in those earthly pleasures we all love so much. Ash Wednesday is next Wednesday.

Feel free to party as you please; here’s some music to help you on your way.  Play ‘em loud, play ‘em often and play ‘em all year – make every day a Mardi Gras Day.

Don’t forget: You can tune in to real-time live webcams for a ringside seat to the madness and Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans.  NOLA webcams

MP3: “Life Is A Carnival/Party” by the Wild Magnolias

MP3: “Mardi Gras Mambo” by the Hawketts

MP3: “Second Line, Part 1” by Bill Sinegal & the Skyliners

MP3: “Who Dat at Mardi Gras” by Luther Kent

MP3: “Carnival Time” by My Morning Jacket w/the Preservation Hall Jazz Band

MP3: “Brother John/Iko Iko” by the Neville Brothers

MP3: “My Indian Red” by Dr. John

MP3: “Shake That Thing” by the Preservation Hall Jazz Band

MP3: “Walking To New Orleans” by Fats Domino

MP3: “Tipitina” by Professor Longhair

MP3: “When The Saints Go Marchin’ In” by Louis Armstrong

MP3: “Mardi Gras Mambo”/”Hey Pocky-A-Way” (live) by the Meters

Funky New Orleans: The Meters at Mardi Gras

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , on January 31, 2013 by 30daysout

Editor’s Note: This is a repost of an item we ran a couple of years ago, reappearing here to help get everyone in that Mardi Gras mood. The links have been updated and the Meters have still not made it to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Radio used to be magic. When the stars aligned, and the right artist played the right venue and radio was there, it could be just beautiful. Here’s one of those moments: January 1977, at the Showboat Lounge in the Fat City entertainment district of Metairie, which is a suburb of New Orleans. January in New Orleans is carnival season, and WNOE radio in the Crescent City marked the occasion with an hour-long live show by the always incredible Meters.

The band – featuring Art Neville on keyboards and vocals, Zigaboo Modeliste on drums, George Porter Jr. on bass and Leo Nocentelli on guitar (Cyril Neville may or may not have been an official member of the band, and he wasn’t at this gig) – ripped through some of their Mardi Gras anthems and some seriously greasy second-line funk.

In 1977 the Meters were about as big as they were gonna get: they had put out four albums on Warner Bros., they had opened for the Rolling Stones on their big 1975-76 world tour, they played Paul McCartney’s Venus and Mars party on the Queen Mary in 1974 and later in 1977 they were going to appear on “Saturday Night Live.” But here they are, in a small joint doing shout-outs on local radio.  Only in New Orleans, and only in that era.  Unfortunately, later in 1977 the Meters would also break up.

This recording captures one of American music’s great bands, tight as high-tension wire but playing as loose and funky as humanly possible. The recording has amplifier hum as well as that weird FM noise and a really smooth DJ cuts in every once in a while to let you know who dat. There are also a couple of very minor skips and hiccups (toward the end of “Hey Pocky Way”), but nothing can take away from this great music.

As Art Neville says, “It’s Mardi Gras time all the time, as far as we’re concerned.” Cook up some red beans and rice or cue this up in the car … and wonder why these guys aren’t in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

MP3: The Meters live at the Showboat Lounge, WNOE-FM, January 1977 (70 minutes)

Song order: “Just Kissed My Baby”/ “Big Chief”/ “Jungle Man”/ “They All Ask’d For You”/ “Hey Pocky Way”/ “People Say”/ “Ain’t No Use”/ “Po Boy Jam” /”Feel Da Groove”

The Original Meters official website

Let’s Get The Meters Into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Facebook page

It’s Mardi Gras Time!

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , , on February 17, 2012 by 30daysout

Editor’s Note: This is a repost from last year, or the year before – whatever.

Mardi Gras is the final big blowout before the period of fasting and sacrifice called Lent.  Fat Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, is the end of carnival season and the final day you can indulge in those earthly pleasures we all love so much. Ash Wednesday is next Wednesday.

Feel free to party as you please; here’s some music to help you on your way.  Play ‘em loud, play ‘em often and play ‘em all year – make every day a Mardi Gras Day.

Don’t forget: You can tune in to real-time live webcams for a ringside seat to the madness and Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans.  NOLA webcams

MP3: “Life Is A Carnival/Party” by the Wild Magnolias

MP3: “Mardi Gras Mambo” by the Hawketts

MP3: “Second Line, Part 1” by Bill Sinegal & the Skyliners

MP3: “Who Dat at Mardi Gras” by Luther Kent

MP3: “Carnival Time” by My Morning Jacket w/the Preservation Hall Jazz Band

MP3: “Brother John/Iko Iko” by the Neville Brothers

MP3: “My Indian Red” by Dr. John

MP3: “Shake That Thing” by the Preservation Hall Jazz Band

MP3: “Walking To New Orleans” by Fats Domino

MP3: “Tipitina” by Professor Longhair

MP3: “When The Saints Go Marchin’ In” by Louis Armstrong

MP3: “Mardi Gras Mambo”/”Hey Pocky-A-Way” (live) by the Meters


Funky New Orleans: The Meters Live

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , on January 26, 2012 by 30daysout

Editor’s Note: This is a repost of an item we ran a couple of years ago, reappearing here to help get everyone in that Mardi Gras mood. The links have been updated and the Meters are still not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Radio used to be magic.  When the stars aligned, and the right artist played the right venue and radio was there, it could be just beautiful.  Here’s one of those moments: January 1977, at the Showboat Lounge in the Fat City entertainment district of Metairie, which is a suburb of New Orleans.  January in New Orleans is carnival season, and WNOE radio in the Crescent City marked the occasion with an hour-long live show by the always incredible Meters.

The band – featuring Art Neville on keyboards and vocals, Zigaboo Modeliste on drums, George Porter Jr. on bass and Leo Nocentelli on guitar (Cyril Neville may or may not have been an official member of the band, and he wasn’t at this gig) – ripped through some of their Mardi Gras anthems and some seriously greasy second-line funk.

In 1977 the Meters were about as big as they were gonna get: they had put out four albums on Warner Bros., they had opened for the Rolling Stones on their big 1975-76 world tour, they played Paul McCartney’s Venus and Mars party on the Queen Mary in 1974 and later in 1977 they were going to appear on “Saturday Night Live.”  But here they are, in a small joint doing shout-outs on local radio.  Only in New Orleans, and only in that era.  Unfortunately, later in 1977 the Meters would also break up.

This recording captures one of American music’s great bands, tight as high-tension wire but playing as loose and funky as humanly possible.  The recording has amplifier hum as well as that weird FM noise and a really smooth DJ cuts in every once in a while to let you know who dat.  There are also a couple of very minor skips and hiccups (toward the end of “Hey Pocky Way”), but nothing can take away from this great music.

As Art Neville says, “It’s Mardi Gras time all the time, as far as we’re concerned.”  Cook up some red beans and rice or cue this up in the car … and wonder why these guys aren’t in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

MP3: The Meters live at the Showboat Lounge, WNOE-FM, January 1977 (70 minutes)

Song order: “Just Kissed My Baby”/ “Big Chief”/ “Jungle Man”/ “They All Ask’d For You”/ “Hey Pocky Way”/ “People Say”/ “Ain’t No Use”/ “Po Boy Jam” /”Feel Da Groove”

The Original Meters official website

Your Sister’s (Record) Rack: The Wild Tchoupitoulas

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2011 by 30daysout

Continuing our countdown to Mardi Gras, which is this week: an album that was overlooked at the time of its release in 1976, The Wild Tchoupitoulas has nevertheless come to be considered as a landmark of New Orleans music.  Not only that – it’s a great Mardi Gras party album.

The Wild Tchoupitoulas (pronounced Choo-Pi-TOO-las) was a Thirteenth Ward street gang that put down its weapons and picked up the colorful feathery trappings of Mardi Gras Indians. A tradition dating back to the mid-19th century, the Mardi Gras Indians dressed up in a wild takeoff of Native American garb so they could get around racial segregation. When a large Caribbean population began to grow in the Crescent City that culture assimilated itself into the Mardi Gras Indian tradition.

So, we have The Wild Tchoupitoulas, formed by George Landry, a.k.a. “Chief Jolly.” He had a musical background and his Indians performed a wild call-and-response routine during Mardi Gras parades. When he was approached to possibly cut an album, Jolly recruited as a producer one of the biggest names in New Orleans music – Allen Toussaint.

And for instrumental backup, Chief Jolly didn’t have to look far: he had some nephews who played, their last name was Neville. His nephews Art and Cyril Neville played with seminal NOLA funksters the Meters, who often joined Toussaint on his hit-making projects. With the Meters in the fold, Art and Cyril invited their brother Charles, who was a jazz sideman, and little brother Aaron. Aaron Neville, with an otherworldly voice, who had regional hits like “Tell It Like It Is” and “Everybody Plays The Fool.”

The album kicks off with “Brother John,” the tale of a fallen gang brother, and instantly you can hear the intricate rhythms of the Meters and Art Neville’s sweet keyboard work.  “Meet De Boys On The Battlefront” is an Indian “battle” cry – instead of fighting, this battle is a musical one. “Indians, Here Dey Come” and “Indian Red” are also born from Chief Jolly’s street chants; it’s worth sitting through the long first part of “Indian Red” to get to that little funked-up part about five minutes, 40 seconds in.

Toussaint puts in a ringer, “Hey Pocky-A-Way,” which was a hit of sorts for the Meters in 1974. This version is a little looser than the original, and it features on background vocals the Brothers Neville harmonizing together for the first time.

When The Wild Tchoupitoulas was released it wasn’t a hit (except in New Orleans, of course) but it did inspire the Nevilles to perform together as a brother act. Hence, the Neville Brothers – and when they released their second album in 1981 (the stone classic Fiyo On The Bayou), they kicked it off with a rockin’ version of “Hey Pocky-A-Way” and dedicated it to George “Big Chief Jolly” Landry, who died in 1980.

The Neville Brothers and the Meters continue to be active, and every time one of these units takes a stage it’s a reminder that they deserve more than just about anyone else to be enshrined in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Forget Mardi Gras – any time of the year, this is essential American music.

MP3: “Brother John”

MP3: “Meet De Boys On The Battlefront”

MP3: “Indian Red”

The Wild Tchoupitoulas, pictured in 1976

 

The Meters Should Be In the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , , on March 3, 2011 by 30daysout

The Meters, c. 1975

This is getting to be a Mardi Gras tradition around here – an hour-long live radio show from 1977, featuring the funky, funky Meters.  This magic recording was cut at the Showboat Lounge in the Fat City entertainment district of Metairie, which is a suburb of New Orleans, by WNOE radio.

The band – featuring Art Neville on keyboards and vocals, Zigaboo Modeliste on drums, George Porter Jr. on bass and Leo Nocentelli on guitar (Cyril Neville may or may not have been an official member of the band, and he wasn’t at this gig) – ripped through some of their Mardi Gras anthems and some seriously greasy second-line funk.

In 1977 the Meters were about as big as they were gonna get: they had put out four albums on Warner Bros., they had opened for the Rolling Stones on their big 1975-76 world tour, they played Paul McCartney’s Venus and Mars party on the Queen Mary in 1974 and later in 1977 they were going to appear on “Saturday Night Live.”  But here they are, in a small joint doing shout-outs on the radio.  Only in New Orleans.  Unfortunately, later in 1977 the Meters would also break up.

This recording captures one of American music’s great bands, tight as high-tension wire but playing as loose and funky as humanly possible.  The recording has amplifier hum as well as that weird FM noise and a really smooth DJ cuts in every once in a while to let you know who dat.  There are also a couple of very minor skips and drops (toward the end of “Hey Pocky Way”), but nothing can take away from this great music.

As Art Neville says, “It’s Mardi Gras time all the time, as far as we’re concerned.”  Cook up some red beans and rice or cue this up in the car … and wonder why these guys aren’t in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

If that omission pisses you off as much as it does me, do something about it and electronically sign this petition to get those buttheads up north to do the right thing and put this great American band in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

MP3: The Meters live at the Showboat Lounge, WNOE-FM, January 1977 (70 minutes)

Song order: “Just Kissed My Baby”/ “Big Chief”/ “Jungle Man”/ “They All Ask’d For You”/ “Hey Pocky Way”/ “People Say”/ “Ain’t No Use”/ “Po Boy Jam” /”Feel Da Groove”

The Original Meters official website