Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Manno Charlemagne, Haitian Folk Singer & Activist, To Play Preservation Hall / 11.13.10

At Preservation Hall 
Saturday, November 13, 2010 
(Midnight Show)
Preservation Hall is proud to welcome the beloved Haitian musician, activist, and former Mayor of Port Au Prince, Mr. Manno Charlemagne for an intimate midnight performance on Saturday, November 13th, 2010. 
 Often referred to as “The Bob Marley of Haiti,” Mr. Charlemagne has been the vocal conscience of Haiti for over 30 years. Performing politically charged folk ballads in French and Creole, Manno used his voice and guitar as weapons in the fight against the brutal Jean-Claude Duvalier regime in the 1970s and 1980s and was consequently exiled from Haiti until the regime’s downfall in 1986.

Upon his return to Haiti in ‘86, Charlemagne became immediately active in the political and roots music scene. Manno enlisted more musicians to form Koral Konbit Kafou, a live band which included a group of drummers from a Voudou temple. The band’s performances served as a soundtrack for political change in the late 1980s. Again, Manno’s grassroots mission caught the eye of the Haitian military. After receiving a series of death threats, Manno was forced into exile once again, this time taking refuge in the Argentine embassy in Port-au-Prince. News of his situation soon spread to the U.S. and then on to film director Jonathan Demme, who united with Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, James Earl Jones, and Robert DiNiro to lobby on Manno’s behalf. These efforts ultimately won the activist musician his freedom and gained him political exile in the United States where he went on to perform concerts in Miami, New York, and Montreal to rally support from Haitian expatriate communities in support of Haitian democracy.

Manno returned to Haiti in 1994 following a United Nations intervention to restore the constitutional government. In 1995 he won a landslide victory to become mayor of Port-au-Prince for what was for the most part an unsuccessful and short-lived career as a politician. Charlemagne returned to his true calling as a musician shortly thereafter.

Adversity struck Charlemagne and the country of Haiti once again on January 12, 2010 when a catastrophic earthquake struck just outside of Port-au-Prince, killing over 200,000 people, injuring over 300,000, and rendering 1,000,000 homeless. Manno’s home was leveled in the quake.
From November 1st thru November 15th, Mr. Charlemagne will take a brief residency in Louisiana. The goal of the residency is to give Manno an opportunity to network with Louisiana's music and arts community, share his breathtaking music, and to tell his story which is the story of the struggle of the Haitian people. The residency will be part fundraiser, part networking opportunity, part performance, and part social activism.

With Helen Gillet
Saturday, November 13th, 2010

At Preservation Hall 726 St. Peter Street, New Orleans
Doors 11:30 pm, Show at Midnight
Tickets $25, advance tickets available at

Manno Charlemagne links:

Monday, September 27, 2010

Preservation Hall Hot 4 "St. James Infirmary" animated video-Official Selection @ New Orleans Film Fest 2010

Preservation Hall is excited to announce that the animated music video for "St. James Infirmary" is an official selection for the 2010 New Orleans Film Festival! Stop by The Contemporary Arts Center at 4pm on Saturday, October 16th. See you there!

Jambands.com Interview with Ben Jaffe

The Preservation Hall Jazz Band and the Essence of New Orleans
Published: 2010/09/21
by Mike Greenhaus

As its name suggests, Preservation Hall Jazz Band is committed to preserving the culture and musical heritage of its native New Orleans. In addition to regular performances at its own Preservation Hall in the French Quarter, the ensemble has served as ambassadors for the Big Easy through appearances at festivals and shows across the country. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Preservation Hall Jazz Band appeared at numerous benefits for the city, including gigs at Radio City Music Hall and Bonnaroo.

Earlier this year the group released the all-star benefit collection Preservation, which features collaborations with the likes of Pete Seeger, Tom Waits, Andrew Bird, Dr. John, Steve Earle, Blind Boys of Alabama, Merle Haggard, Richie Havens, Jason Isbell and Jim James, as well as an archival recording by Louis Armstrong. The group supported the project by touring with My Morning Jacket and playing modern music festival such as the Hangout. Below, Preservation Hall Jazz Band tuba player/spokesman Ben Jaffe—whose father Allan Jaffe led the group for years—discusses the band’s future plans and current collaborations...

Monday, September 13, 2010

ESPN at Preservation Hall?

ESPN's The Next Round recently visited Preservation Hall
for a lively conversation about football and stuff!
The Next Round, hosted by Scoop Jackson, gives sports fans a front-row seat 
at the most exciting table in town. It features Scoop and celebrity guests 
discussing sports and pop culture topics.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Great Video: Cory Chisel w/ Preservation Hall Jazz Band @ Newport Folk Festival!

Check out this great backstage footage of PHJB's rehearsal and subsequent performance of "Some Cold Rainy Day" with Cory Chisel at this year's Newport Folk Festival!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

"It Ain't My Fault" Remix Contest-the submissions thus far...

The Gulf Aid Allstars "It Ain't My Fault" remix contest continues! Check out the submissions by DoctorEternal, Scalez The Ancient, Howard Lambert, Arze Kareem, and more.

Listen to and vote for the remix submissions thus far at: