Back from New Orleans

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival was back in full force this year, making it bit difficult to get around last Saturday.

Finally, after spending an hour or so finding parking for our full-sized van, we made it in time to catch Galactic get ill on the main Acura Stage. The highlight for me was when the New Orleans-based instrumental funk band was joined by keyboardist/vocalist Ivan Neville on a foot-stomping cover of the Curtis Mayfield classic "(Don't Worry) If There's a Hell Below, We're all Going to Go."

Several minutes later I strolled over to the Gospel Tent, where Elder Edward Babb & the Madison Bumble Bees blasted their way to the heavens with an ensemble of brass that must have numbered two-dozen.

While John Mayer closed the day on the Acura Stage, we camped out on the over-crowded Gentilly Stage for an inspired set by the Allman Brothers Band that featured Gregg singing the hell out of a bluesy version of "Melissa" and a funkified cover of Dr. John's "I Walk on Guilded Splinters."

Alas, there was nothing quite as special as last year's storied Bruce Springsteen performance that I witnessed (see picture). But it was a great day all the same spiced by a muffuletta that ranks as one of the tastiest sandwiches I have ever put in my mouth.


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