Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Women tattoo artists' showcase opens at Glitter Box April 7

Posted By on Wed, Mar 29, 2017 at 9:00 AM


An exhibition of work by women tattoo artists (including co-curator Katie Barroso, Danika Brooke, Niki Rain and Mia) opens next month at Glitter Box N.O (1109 Royal St.). Art, digital prints and products designed by the artists will be sold. 10 percent of all proceeds from the exhibition will benefit Sexual Trauma Awareness & Response (STAR).

In the past, we've profiled many local women who tattoo, including Jamie Ruth of Treasure Tattoo and Jacci Gresham of Aart Accent Tattoos. A recent Gambit cover story on nipple tattoos for women who have had mastectomies included Kenner artist Carole Dezarn.

"Stay Bold: A Lady Tattooer Showcase" is open from April 7 through 30. There's an opening party with cocktails from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. April 7. It's free to attend.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Top Taco Festival announces winners

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 11:52 AM

The inaugural Top Taco New Orleans festival took place March 23 at the Riverwalk's Spanish Plaza. - COURTESY TOP TACO
  • The inaugural Top Taco New Orleans festival took place March 23 at the Riverwalk's Spanish Plaza.

A traditional taqueria in Kenner took home top honors at the Top Taco New Orleans festival March 23.

Taqueria Chilangos (2723 Roosevelt Blvd., 504-469-5599) was named top traditional taco by both the judges and people’s vote. Judges (including this one) voted for their favorites from more than 40 restaurants competing in categories including top creative taco, top traditional margarita and top creative tequila cocktail.

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Jazz Fest releases the cubes

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 11:22 AM

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers perform Sunday, April 30 at Jazz Fest. - MARY ELLEN MATTHEWS
  • Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers perform Sunday, April 30 at Jazz Fest.

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival released the cubes, or daily schedules, for its 2017 event. Headliners include Stevie Wonder, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Usher and The Roots, Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue, Kings of Leon, Widespread Panic, Alabama Shakes and many others.

Included in the announcement is the lineup of Cuban bands slated to perform in the Cultural Exchange Pavilion, located on the infield between the Congo Square Stage and Food 2 area. The stage has a full lineup of five to six bands every day. Cuban bands also will perform on other stages, and headliners include Gente de Zona, Chucho Valdes and Los Van Van. There also will be Cuban food, crafts and art.

The Festival runs April 28-30 and May 4-7 at the New Orleans Fair Grounds Race Course and Slots. Single day tickets are $70 in advance or $80 at the gate. Ticket information is here.

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Premiere: listen to Vox and the Hound's album Aloha Shores

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 11:15 AM


Vox and the Hound looked to Sergio Leone scores and spaghetti Westerns as its cinematic mantra for 2012's breakthrough Courage. But for its 2017 followup Aloha Shores, out March 31, the New Orleans born-and-bred rock band embraced '80s horror scores and cornball action movies. "Everything was like, 'What can the keyboards do?'" says singer Leo DeJesus. "'Before we do that, can we do that on a keyboard?'"

DeJesus tends to think of songs cinematically. On Aloha Shores, his flair for theatrical vocal lines meets squiggly keyboards, soft synths and punchy bass riffs, from the disjointed funk of Talking Heads ("WoЯn") to a Champagne-toasted Steely Dan impression on "Aloha Sures (Sous Shuf)."

"We always had a tendency to do what [drummer Eric Rogers] calls a 'sideways Christmas tree' — starts small and ends up big," DeJesus says. See album opener "Recapitated," which veers into its prog-rock centerpiece with surround-sound harmonies, then blasts right back to its earworm chorus.

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Student zine, presentation March 30 highlight notable New Orleans black women

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 11:10 AM

Mwende Katwiwa (center) and program participants.
  • Mwende Katwiwa (center) and program participants.

In a time when pop culture is finally amplifying the voices and stories of more black women, participants in a Young Women with a Vision after-school program are finding heroes closer to home.

At a New Orleans Public Library presentation Thursday, they'll present a zine-style sample of their work so far on a book that ultimately will profile as many as 30 notable black women from New Orleans. The book, created almost entirely by the program's middle and high school students, will be published when the program concludes this academic year.

"We're living in this era of black girl magic, and  if you're a millennial of my age it hits you at the perfect time, but I realized ... a lot of that has not actually trickled down to young people," says program coordinator Mwende Katwiwa. "I was getting a lot of feedback from [the students] in school that they don't have access to a lot of black women who look like them. ... A lot of the people people that they see in places that are not home don't look like them and don't share similar experiences."

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Brewsday Tuesday: Courtyard Brewery to host Louisiana Hop Festival

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Courtyard Brewery - NORA MCGUNNIGLE
  • Nora McGunnigle
  • Courtyard Brewery

Courtyard Brewery (1020 Erato St.) will host the inaugural Louisiana Hop Festival Thursday, April 20. Brewer-owner Scott Wood says the event is meant to fill the void left by the WYES International Beer Tasting, which ceased operations after its 2014 event. Courtyard’s state retail permit allows Wood to donate proceeds to the Louisiana Craft Brewers Guild, which has not been able to get permission from the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control (ATC) to hold its own fundraising events.

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City officials urge treatment as drug overdose deaths surpass murders

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 12:05 AM

The health department's Joseph Kanter: "Opioid addiction a medical illness. It's not a character flaw,"
  • The health department's Joseph Kanter: "Opioid addiction a medical illness. It's not a character flaw,"

Drug-related overdose deaths surpassed the number of murders in New Orleans in 2016. New Orleans health department medical director Joseph Kanter is urging people struggling with substance abuse to seek addiction treatment.

According to New Orleans Coroner Jeffrey Rouse, of last year's record 211 drug-related deaths, 166 involved opiates — compared to 81 in 2015. Compared to 2015 deaths, the number of people who died with the synthetic opioid fentanyl in their system more than tripled. There were 13 fentantyl-related deaths in 2015, when there were 93 drug-related deaths overall. Forty-eight people died with fentanyl in their system last year.

Kanter says "unfortunately these are in line with national numbers" for drug-related deaths, which climbed to more than 50,000 in 2015. Opioids killed more than 33,000 people in 2015.

"Opioid addiction is a medical illness. It's not a character flaw," Kanter said. "There's excellent treatment for it. Friends, family members and loved ones who suffer from addiction need to know there is a treatment available, and you should help your loved ones go and seek treatment."

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Monday, March 27, 2017

The New York Times profiles Sidney Torres

Posted By on Mon, Mar 27, 2017 at 9:38 PM

Sidney Torres.
  • Sidney Torres.

Garbage tycoon/real estate developer/reality TV star Sidney Torres — will he or won't he run for mayor?

The local speculation went national tonight when The New York Times profiled the star of CNBC's The Deed in a larger story about political neophytes who are eying a political run (some inspired, the story says, by the electoral success of Donald Trump):
Much the way Mr. Trump dismissed questions about his checkered private life, Mr. Torres, who sports a man bun, predicted few voters would care about his having had a child out of wedlock with a model or recoil at an Instagram account that is heavier on images of his Gulfstream jet than of gumbo. In fact, Mr. Torres readily volunteers that he was asked to relocate his private jet when Mr. Trump used a local hangar for a rally last year.

“I believe everybody should have the opportunity to have nice things,” he said.
Torres also says he's ready to put $4 million into the race — if he runs.

Read the whole thing — and our cover story about Torres' possible political ambitions.

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Y@ Speak: briefly

Posted By on Mon, Mar 27, 2017 at 7:30 PM

Before we enter the fifth season (Festival), we prepare the trinity: Disaster capitalism, football stuff and Ken Polite dancing his way out of court. Also this week: Most of New Orleans didn't vote, and Louisiana's members of Congress were first in line to console the president.

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Survey: Louisianans want tax increases, spending cuts to solve state budget crisis

Posted By on Mon, Mar 27, 2017 at 3:48 PM


Louisiana residents may not be as anti-tax as conventional wisdom suggests, according to an LSU survey released today, but most residents also believe the state can and ought to reduce spending by eliminating government inefficiencies.

A sizable majority of those surveyed — 71 percent — believe lawmakers should use a combination of tax increases and spending cuts to solve the state’s reoccurring budget shortfalls, LSU’s Reilly Center for Media and Public Affairs Louisiana Survey 2017 found.

Researchers found tax hikes must be tied to specific areas, like higher education, elementary and secondary education and health care, to gain support.

But which taxes should lawmakers increase when they go into session April 10th?

“That’s the part where the public is not offering our public leaders, our policymakers, a clear path,” said LSU Public Policy Research Lab Director Michael Henderson, co-author of the report.

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