Sunday, August 30, 2009

Baby Dodds New Orleans Drumming video 1960s

Here's a snippet from a historic 1960s drum instructional video featuring New Orleans' great Warren 'Baby' Dodds. Dodds performed and recorded with Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, Kid Ory, King Oliver amongst countless others.

Watch the video by clicking HERE

For more on Baby Dodd's click HERE

Friday, August 28, 2009

Stay Tooned. 10.09

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Now for Sale at The Preservation Hall Store: SISTER GERTRUDE MORGAN - Let's Make A Record

Sister Gertrude Morgan's voice may now be reaching more people than ever. With tracks from King Britt Presents: Sister Gertrude Morgan cropping up in episodes of HBO's True Blood, we thought it only appropriate to make the original Sister Gertrude recordings available to the public once more.

For a limited time at the Preservation Hall Store, you can now buy Let's Make A Record, the original Sister Gertrude Morgan recording, remastered by Ben Jaffe, for only $10!

Here's what Thom Jurek of the AllMusic Guide has to say about the album:
"While Sister Gertrude Morgan (1900-1980), is still celebrated as one of the great American outsider artists whose sacred paintings are collected and written about all over the world, few know her as a powerful, haunting, and enigmatic gospel singer and preacher. Thankfully, the good folks at Preservation Hall Recordings -- who have already issued five previous volumes of forgotten or little-known American roots music -- do. Let's Make a Record is an album of Morgan's homemade gospel songs, recorded somewhere around 1960. This is deeply prophetic music; music of praise & worship that sits on the fissure line between pre- and post- WWII black gospel traditions. Under 40 minutes in length, this is nonetheless a powerful, even earthshaking collection of Morgan's own tunes, where she, accompanied only by her tambourine and stomping foot, calls the listener's attention to the kingdom of God as it came for the Israelites; as it has come in the minds and hearts of believers, and will come in glory at the end of the world. This is praise music that exhorts, pleads, wails, shouts, growls, prophesies, and longs for the Jesus of the New Testament to make his presence known, and celebrates it as it does. It also puts to shame much of what passes for praise music in our own century. Fans of blues and gospel music are fortunate to have such a treasure-trove available again,complete with a stunning package featuring a reproduction of one of Morgan's paintings covering an oversize, heavy cardboard gatefold sleeve. Just amazing."


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sister Gertrude Morgan, climbing the charts!

In 2005, Philadelphia-based DJ and Producer King Britt released a sonic re-interpretation of the 1968 recordings of Sister Gertrude Morgan. Remastered just two years earlier by Ben Jaffe of Preservation Hall, the re-release of these long-forgotten tracks had caused quite a stir in the gospel world. Sister Gertrude had been lauded for years as a seminal figure in the Outsider or Folk Art scene. Now, at long last, her voice and proto-gospel spiritual call were available to the public once again. The 2005 King Britt release, with its soulful and imaginative sonic tributes to this charismatic and passionate woman, quickly achieved a critical acclaim all its own.

And now, four years later, King Britt presents Sister Gertrude Morgan has made its way to #5 on the iTunes album charts! Thanks to a couple of well-placed tracks appearing in the HBO series True Blood, interest has reignited to a staggering degree!

Help keep Sister G on the charts! Pick up
King Britt presents Sister Gertrude Morgan at iTunes!


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Earl Scioneaux in the New York Times!

Not too long ago, Earl Scioneaux III, engineer for many recording projects here at Preservation Hall (including New Orleans Preservation, Vol. 1!) went looking for a new way to fund a great recording project. The project is called Electronola, and it seeks to cross-pollinate the sounds of traditional New Orleans music with modern Electronic music. The method he used was a program called Kickstarter, by which enterprising artists and musicians can solicit funding from the general public at large in exchange for an insider's access to the process.

Today, Earl's project was profiled on the front page of the Business Section of the New York Times.

Not bad, Earl!

Here's what New York has to say about it:
A Few Dollars at a Time, Patrons Support Artists on the Web
Published: August 24, 2009

Earl Scioneaux III is not a famous music producer like Quincy Jones. He is a simple audio engineer in New Orleans who mixes live albums of local jazz musicians by day and creates electronic music by night. He had long wanted to pursue his dream of making his own album that married jazz and electronica, but he had no easy way to raise the $4,000 he needed for production.

Then he heard about Kickstarter, a start-up based in Brooklyn that uses the Web to match aspiring da Vincis and Spielbergs with mini-Medicis who are willing to chip in a few dollars toward their projects. Unlike similar sites that simply solicit donations, patrons on Kickstarter get an insider’s access to the projects they finance, and in most cases, some tangible memento of their contribution. The artists and inventors, meanwhile, are able to gauge in real time the commercial appeal of their ideas before they invest a lot of effort — and cash.

Mr. Scioneaux, who ultimately raised $4,100, offered a range of rewards to his supporters: for a $15 payment, patrons received an advance copy of the album; for $30, they got a personal music lesson as well. A payment of $50 or more got both of those, and a seat at Mr. Scioneaux’s dinner table for a bowl of his homemade gumbo and a chance to listen to some of his studio recordings. “I didn’t expect people to be all over that one,” he said, “but it sold out almost immediately...”


Saturday, August 22, 2009

stay tooned 10.09

stay tooned.

Friday, August 21, 2009

PHJB ON THE ROAD: Kuala Lumpur!


Thursday, August 20, 2009
New Orleans in KL
by Sharmilla Ganesan

A living, breathing entity that is intertwined with every aspect of life ... that’s what New Orleans jazz is all about.

IT was like the Pied Piper was in town: seven men, armed with musical instruments, filled the night with the exuberant sounds of New Orleans jazz as they led concert-goers out of the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas (DFP) onto the upper foyer. Curious passersby joined the clapping, swaying crowd, and for a few minutes, the outside of the philharmonic hall almost resembled a street carnival. Finally, with one throbbing note of the trombone, the performance ended, a fabulous finale to the showcase of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band (PHJB) held in Kuala Lumpur last weekend.

This, in essence, is what New Orleans jazz is all about. It isn’t confined to a particular place or group of people; rather, it is a living, breathing entity that is intertwined with every aspect of life in New Orleans. After all, it’s not for nothing that the city is known as the birthplace of jazz; it is from here that jazz travelled to places like Chicago and New York City.

“Not a day goes by that you don’t hear live music in New Orleans,” says Ben Jaffe, PHJB’s creative director. “I wake up every morning to the church bells from St James, then the calliope music from boats on the Mississippi (River) starts, and then the bands on the streets play all day long.”

“Music is everywhere in New Orleans!” says 76-year-old PHJB member Charlie Gabriel, a fourth-generation New Orleans musician. “It’s in our people, our food, our environment. When you walk around our city, you’d see people standing in corners playing intruments, or people walking along and just singing. It’s a feeling like no other...”


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sister Gertrude Morgan

Found something out I didn't know today.   Got an email from a gallery in Philadelphia, said they had a client that brought in a Sister Gertrude Morgan painting along with a vinyl copy of her album "Let's Make A Record".  The client also said they bought it from Larry Borenstein(proprietor of Associated Artists Gallery which eventually became Preservation Hall).  Vinyl?  Didn't know it had been released on vinyl.   After a few inquiries, I found out there were originally 500 copies released in the 70s, each HAND PAINTED by Sister Gertrude Herself.  Wouldn't mind getting my hands on one of those.  Very cool.  For those of you that are unfamiliar with Sister Gertrude, here's a bit from Wikipedia:

Sister Gertrude

 Morgan (1900-1980) was a preacher, missionary, artist, musician, and poet who worked in New Orleans in the 1960s and '70s, notable primarily for her folk art.

She was born in 1900 in Lafayette, Alabama, and moved to Columbus, Georgia at the age of eighteen. She was married to Will Morgan in 1928, but at the age of 38 heard a voice from God telling her to become a street evangelist. She left her family and husband to move to New Orleans, where she organized an orphanage with two other missionaries.

God told her to begin painting in 1956 and in 1957 heard a voice telling her that she was the Bride of Christ. Hearing this news, she adopted a white habit and moved out of the orphanage to establish "The Everlasting Gospel Mission" in the French Quarter of New Orleans.

Music was one of the tools of her ministry, and in the early 1970s, Let's Make A Record was recorded in order to capture Morgan singing and playing her tambourine.

She painted in order to create visual aids for her preaching, and her paintings use a colorful religious iconography. Some of her favorite subjects are the Book of Revelation and her andJesus flying in an airplane, this last accompanied by the poem "Jesus is my air Plane." She painted on whatever was at hand, including styrofoam trays, window shades and even toilet paper rolls.

Her art brought her fame and notoriety, and in 1974 she announced that the Lord had ordered her to cease painting in order to concentrate on her preaching and poetry. She died in 1980.

In 2005, the New Orleans Museum of Art presented the first comprehensive collection of her art. Also in 2005, the Ropeadope label released King Britt presents Sister Gertrude Morgan, which took the a cappella/tambourine recordings of Let's Make A Record and added contemporary beat programming and instrumentation. The album received rave reviews and created a new, young audience for Sister Gertrude Morgan. The album artwork featured her paintings.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Stay Tooned. 10.09

stay tooned

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The NOPV1 Boxed Collection - NOW AVAILABLE!

Modeled after the Angelo Brocato's pastry box, a much-loved institution here in New Orleans, this limited edition, hand-packed collection contains a veritable treasure trove of goodies pulled from the 50-year archives of Preservation Hall. Contents include the new CD, a cassette tape, a promotional VHS, an 8x10 black and white glossy promotional picture, and a ton of other cool stuff. Possibly the coolest? The "All-Access" laminated pass that gains you free entrance to performances at Preservation Hall on any of our normal nights of operation!

An unsolicited review of the NOPV1 Boxed Collection by a recent contest winner:
"Got that pack today! AMAZING. Some of those old posters are just incredible. PHJB came out here to Seattle about maybe ten years ago and they played that video, and I have been trying to get my hands on it ever since (lot's of great footage of Willie, Percy, Narvin, Allen, et. al). I have that tape cassette, but it is so beaten up, it is nice to have a version that will actually play (My dad had Vol. 1 on 8-track!). I'm a happy camper, bro! Thanks!"

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My Morning Jacket's Jim James talks PHJB with Paste Magazine


By Tom Hallett
Louisville, Ky. native Jim James has been a diehard music lover since before many fans of his band, My Morning Jacket, were born. Picking up on the spirit of genuine American music surrounding him in Kentucky and growing up with a mother who whole-heartedly supported his artistic leanings, he dove head-long into his passion at the age of three...

Paste: You recently went to New Orleans to record live with the legendary Preservation Hall Jazz Band. That recording is another benefit-type release, with proceeds going to help raise money for the Hall. Tell us a bit about that experience, and your thoughts on jazz in general and New Orleans jazz in particular.

Man, what a thrill! Those guys were amazing, and the hall is just jam packed with good vibes and great musical memories. What a thrill! We did it old-school: all live with no electricity, and the garbage trucks even played along! I sang through [late, legendary New Orleans pianist/chanteuse] Sweet Emma’s old paper bullhorn. What a thrill. I had a deep dream the night before the session that she breathed her soul into my mouth through a hole in the floor, and I unknowingly carried it with me through the night and the morning, and when I got her old bullhorn up to my mouth again, it felt just like old times, and I blew her soul back out of my body and into her proper habitat there inside the preservation hall. Unreal! New Orleans is unstoppable. The people and the power there is just unreal...


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Friday, August 7, 2009


stay tooned.

PHJB with Pete Seeger and an All-Star Cast on PBS Great Performances!

Sunday, August 9, 2009 - 3pm - WYES (New Orleans)

Tune in to WYES Channel 12 this Sunday to watch the Preservation Hall Jazz Band help an All-Star Cast celebrate the 90th birthday of American Musical Legend, Pete Seeger! Shot at Madison Square Garden on May 3rd of this year, the event is now a part of the PBS Series, Great Performances. Don't Miss it!


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Ben performs with Pete Seeger at Newport Folk Festival

Here's a photo of Ben(and sousaphone) performing with Pete Seeger at the Newport Folk Festival last weekend.  photo by Richard McCaffrey. Read the Boston Phoenix article by clicking HERE

PHJB @ Litchfield Jazz Festival, reviewed by the Hartford Courant

New Orleans Roots Anchor Litchfield Music Festival

Monday, August 3, 2009

photo of Ben with Dave Matthews Band at the Hall

From a few months back.