Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Live Review: Shorty Fest 5/1/14 NO, LA

Shorty Fest
Generations Hall, New Orleans, LA

For the 2nd Annual Shorty Fest the crowd lined up early. Word must have spread after last years excellent show that you don't want to miss a note. Opening things up as fans filled into Generations Hall the sweet sounds of The New Breed Brass Band got dancing feet moving in the courtyard. The band went through classics like "Go To The Mardi Gras" in their own style, fans and musicians who were playing later all mingled and enjoyed.

The show highlight on this night came early and in the young form of Brandon "Taz" Niederauer. Dominating the Young Blues Showdown. Taz played one tune, a cover of "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)" that had people screaming and holding up rows of cellphones to capture the moment. Taz has been an Internet sensation for his guitar playing, on this night his singing was on the same exceedingly high level, a pure whirlwind "what the hell was that!" moment.

Music was moving and flowing like clockwork as some students of the Trombone Shorty Foundation joined Cha Wa to get funky on the brass. The Soul Rebels held court and got people dancing with a mega medley based around Daft Punks "Get Lucky". The legend Dr. Lonnie Smith joined some of the Foundation's players to showcase the young and old talents before the headliner started.   

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue clearly love this show and look forward to it all year. That said the set list sticks pretty close to the songs people paying top notch for tickets will know. "For True" got a good reaction and "Hey" had the easy sing along going as well as the hands in the air and hips shaking.

Like last year a surprise special guest was the highlight, this time the legend Fred Wesley joined the band for some trombone playing as well as singing his tune "House Party". It was clear that Shorty was giddy to have an idol of his on stage with him, trading off verses, horn runs and dance moves.

A joy to be a part of a new generation toasted an elder statesman as a younger 3rd era of students reaped the financial rewards so they can blow funky in the future.
This is a great part of Jazzfest for us to participate in the last 2 years, giving money to a great cause and seeing an amazing night of music...what more can you ask for? Here's to year 3 in 2015. More info on the foundation is here and you can watch some video below:

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