Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Ross McElwee's Photographic Memory screens at CAC

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 at 5:06 PM

The trailer above for Ross McElwee's Photographic Memory, which screens at 7 p.m. tonight at CAC, is misleading. It runs some scenes in fast forward and uses fast-tempo music that's not in the film. McElwee's documentary is much more patient and deliberately pensive. Ostensibly it's about the filmmaker's concerns about his son Adrian's discontent and desire for separation, and it's strangely compelling for a film about one parent's worries about the future of his child.

What makes McElwee's work almost darkly compelling is the way he earnestly states one purpose while pursuing a more narcissistic one. The effect works brilliantly in Sherman's March, and it works well in Photographic Memory, though the contrast is less stark. In Sherman's March, McElwee says he's making a documentary about Gen. William Sherman's path of destruction in the South. But what's brilliant to the point of discomfort are the scenes in which he interviews former girlfriends about why their relationships didn't work. In Photographic Memory, McElwee rolls footage of his son at young ages being very open about his thoughts and McElwee contrasts that with the aloof late-teen Adrian seeking privacy (to smoke pot, hang out with his friends, pursue extreme sports). McElwee announces that he's going to go to France to retrace his steps when he was his son's age - to see if he can gain insight into being that age - but again it turns into a journey much more about his past relationships. It seems that he planned the trip to France and then sought an excuse he finally found in arguing with Adrian. And as insightful as he sounds, one wonders if he should reflect on how often he tries to relate to people while filming them. That's an inherently unequal conversation. He exposes some of his own frailties this way, and it's engrossing.

The film is presented by the New Orleans Film Society and the CAC. Trailer for Sherman's March after the jump.

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Social media reaction to the Times-Picayune news

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 at 4:41 PM

In the spirit of Lauren LaBorde and her weekly Y@Speak column, I attempted to summarize some local and national reaction to the news that the NOLA Media Group, aka The Times-Picayune | NOLA.com, would soon be publishing a new street paper (but not a Picayune) on the days it doesn't print a Picayune.

Publisher RIcky Mathews clarified things for The Wall Street Journal this afternoon:

Ricky Mathews, president of NOLA, said TPStreet wasn't an attempt to backtrack on last year's cutback. "Seven days a week wasn't viable long-term," he said, but added "we see this as recognizing that we didn't have all the answers" last year.

Yes, the new paper will be called TPStreet, which despite all appearances was not the name of a 1980s cop series starring Erik Estrada as T.P. Street.

So what do we think of the plan? O New Orleans, thou art confused. (And angry.)

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Times-Picayune to begin printing on days it doesn't print in order to provide "front-to-back newspaper reading experience"

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 at 12:53 PM


The digitally-focused NOLA Media Group, which cut back print publication of The Times-Picayune to three days a week last year, continued to innovate today by announcing a new plan to print on the days it doesn't produce a print product, bringing the company up to 7-day-a-week publication, according to an announcement by NOLA Media Group Vice President of Content Jim Amoss.

The report, which is not from The Onion, says the new product, to be called "TPStreet," will launch this summer in newsboxes around the city and cost 75 cents, just like the daily paper, which it will not be, because it is more innovative than that:

“Our success in delivering more news, sports and entertainment to our readers enables us to create this innovative publication, the latest milestone in our evolution as a multimedia news organization,” said President and Publisher Ricky Mathews.

The innovative publication is in response to "a repeated request" from home-delivery subscribers to get a delivered daily paper, but it will not be home delivered, Mathews said:

“In TPStreet, we sought to develop a publication that would address our single-copy readers and also respond to a repeated request from our home-delivery subscribers for a front-to-back newspaper reading experience in the e-edition on days we don’t offer home delivery,” said Mathews.

The front-to-back newspaper reading experience, says Amoss, will give "our readers access to the state’s largest and most talented news organization both online and in print every day."

“We are excited about this opportunity to extend our daily reach in print,” concurred vice president of advertising Kelly Rose.

Requests from response from the corpse of George Orwell, Jeff Jarvis, the creators of New Coke and Monty Python's Ministry of Silly Walks were unreturned.

Under the jump: some local Twitter reaction.

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Street food hits the road for new event series

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 at 11:50 AM

food trucks
  • Food trucks at an earlier My House-organized event in Central City.

New generation food trucks typically serve just a few specialized dishes, though lately they’ve have been enlisted to serve a number of other purposes too.

During its most recent racing season, for instance, the Fair Grounds Race Course continually used food trucks to market nights at the horse track to a younger generation, while earlier in April civic boosters in Jefferson Parish organized a food truck rally to promote a new image for the Fat City district, drawing a huge crowd in the process.

Next week, on May 7, vendors will gather once again to begin a new two-month series of food truck events designed to highlight different neighborhoods across town and some of the community organizations working within them. The series is called Rolling Through and the inaugural edition will feature at least eight trucks arrayed outside the Bayou Treme Center, a new community center in the former St. Rose de Lima church just off Esplanade Avenue and North Broad Street.

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NOPD consent decree selection postponed

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

Today, U.S. District Court Judge Susie Morgan was scheduled to select one of the two final firms that would monitor the New Orleans Police Department and implement reforms as ordered under the federal consent decree. That decision has been postponed another two weeks until May 14.

This morning, the 10-member committee overseeing the selection filed a joint motion to postpone for more time to agree on the finalist. Mayor Mitch Landrieu's administration selected Chicago-based consulting firm Hillard Heintze, while the U.S. Department of Justice picked the Los Angeles-based international law firm Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton.

Read more about the two firms in Gambit — and the strengths, weaknesses, potential conflicts and what others have to say about them.

You can download the proposals and other attached documents from this large .zip file.

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Musician benefit concerts this week

Posted By on Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 3:36 PM

Liz McComb performs at the 2012 WWOZ 90.7 FM Piano Night.
  • Liz McComb performs at the 2012 WWOZ 90.7 FM Piano Night.

During the two week period of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, there are plenty of benefit concerts that support musicians, education and more. Many are described here. There are two well established benefit concerts tonight. WWOZ 90.7 FM holds its annual Piano Night at the House of Blues, and the Tipitina's Foundation hosts Instruments A Comin' at the Uptown club.

Other benefits this week include:

- The Threadhead Foundation holds a fundraiser at the Old Iron Works Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Performers include Johnny Sketch and the Dirty Notes, CC Adcock and the Lafayette Marquis with members of Lil' Band O' Gold, and many others. Food and drink is included. Tickets are $75 and must be purchased in advance.

- The Ponderosa Stomp and New Orleans Musicians Clinic host the Naughty Nurse Prom 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Palm Court Jazz Cafe, and proceeds go to the clinic. Entertainment is by Little Freddie King and Guitar Lightnin' Lee. Tickets $20-$45.

- Shorty Fest, raises funds for Trombone Shorty's Foundation, which supports music education. Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue are joined by Cha Wa, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Hot 8 Brass Band and others. The event starts at 8 p.m. Thursday at Generations Hall. Proceeds benefit the foundation.

- Down on the Bayou IV is headlined by Dr. John, actor/comedian Harry Shearer, Jo Jo Herman of Widespread Panic, Marcia Ball, Col. Bruce Hampton, New Orleans Suspects, Jon Gros and others. The entertainment starts at 9 p.m. Thursday at Republic. Proceeds benefit the New Orleans Musicians Clinic. Tickets are $35 in advance, $45 on the day of the show.

- Rock 'N' Hops combines craft beer and music to benefit MusiCares. The event is at 8 p.m. Saturday at NOLA Brewing. The lineup features The Breton Sound, Coyotes, Andrew Duhon and others. Tickets include all-you-can drink NOLA Brewing beer. Tickets $20 in advance, $25 at the door.

- On Friday, Fiya Fest features music, boiled crawfish and drinks at Mardi Gras World, and proceeds benefit Roots of Music. The lineup includes Karl Denson and the Dirty Dozen Horns, Dr. KLAW (Eric Krasno, Ian Neville, Adam Deitch and others), GABE (George Porter, Anders Osborne, Billy Iuso and Eric Bolivar), Dragon Smoke and others. The Roots of Music Marching Crusaders will perform a short set. Music goes from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tickets are $80.

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Jazz Fest 2013 Day 3 Photos

Posted By on Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 3:30 PM

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Y@ Speak: Jazz Fest weekend 1 — the Billy Joel report

Posted By on Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 12:05 PM

It was a rainy weekend but that didn't stop people from going to Jazz Fest, fleeing town for the comforts of Lafayette's Festival International de Louisiane or following Billy Joel around (this roundup is mostly about Billy Joel). In other non-Piano Man tweets, Jazz Fest tools and a George Rodrigue parody account.

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Gambit's Digital Edition: April 30, 2013

Posted on Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 9:40 AM

Click to view on your iPad or see a tiny version on your Iphone

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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sunday at Jazz Fest

Posted By on Sun, Apr 28, 2013 at 8:59 PM

A jazz funeral for Uncle Lionel Batiste parades through the Fair Grounds infield.
  • A jazz funeral for "Uncle" Lionel Batiste parades through the Fair Grounds infield.

Thunderstorms could only do so much to dampen spirits at Jazz Fest Sunday.

The Martha Redbone Roots Project performed at the Fais Do-Do stage early in the day. She sang several songs off her recent album of William Blake songs. Redbone is of Cherokee, Shawnee, Choctaw and African-American ancestry, and her band is a southern Appalachian string band, with a guitar, banjo, fiddle and stand up bass. And Blake's poetry suited her vocals and the band's picking. Off the album she sang "Garden of Love" and "A Poison Tree." She also sang "This Train'" (or "This Train is Bound for Glory"), which was popularized as a religious tune and later adapted into a folk anthem. But the highlight of the set was Redbone's beautiful and haunting version of "Drums," Native American singer Peter LaFarge's song about holding onto Native American heritage and pride in spite of assimilation into a culture that essentially viewed them as vanquished. Johnny Cash recorded a notable cover. (Older video of Redbone singing "Drums" after the jump.)

On the Gentilly stage, Calexico's set included songs from its recent album Algiers, recorded on the West Bank, with older songs accented with mariachi horns and Latin grooves. But the band brought a New Orleans horn section on stage for many numbers. And it all came together when the band played "See You Later, Alligator" in tribute to Bobby Charles.

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