Monday, May 4, 2009

Camera Bravura

Posted By on Mon, May 4, 2009 at 10:07 PM

click to enlarge " />Sharon wriggled, Etta writhed, and a wild-haired Neil summoned the rain. But for me, the lasting highlights of Jazz Fest 2009 were those rare glimpses of festivals past. Large prints from the Historic New Orleans Collection&#146;s <a href=

Michael P. Smith archive dotted the Fair Grounds’ walkways like black-and-white picture windows into yesteryear. The Metairie-born photographer, who died in September, has concurrent exhibits running at the HNOC and the CAC, the latter of which -- “Twenty-Five Jazz Fests” -- contains nearly 100 images like the classic 1990 one above: a pint-sized Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews showing where he got his nickname, puffing cheeks in front of a disbelieving Bo Diddley. Head here for Gambit’s March feature on the first exhibit.

Elsewhere: The New York Times music critic Jon Pareles, who received his first review assignment from John Swenson at Crawdaddy! magazine in 1975, has special affinities for Jazz Fest and the Ponderosa Stomp. He filed a fine series of blogs that were front-page items on the Times’ Web site for much of this morning. Check out his takes on everything from the new Rock 'n' Bowl (improved acoustics — Pareles approves) to Bon Jovi (shot through the heart! — Pareles does not approve).

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