Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The 50 New Orleans Newsmakers of 2011 by Kevin Allman and Alex Woodward

              The 50 New Orleans Newsmakers of 2011 

Kevin Allman and Alex Woodward on the people who made a name for themselves this year ... for better or for worse

The famous, the infamous, the people of substance and the flashes in the pan: this year brought them all. These are 2011's persistent headline-makers in New Orleans and south Louisiana, the people who at times seemed as ubiquitous as honey badgers, pop-up restaurants and pumped-up kicks.
47. Preservation Hall Jazz Band
The Standard-Bearers
Band director Ben Jaffe, the son of Preservation Hall founders Allan and Sandra Jaffe, has demonstrated how the band can grow while still staying rooted in the hall's famed jazz tradition, one Louis Armstrong once triumphed. With seemingly endless tours, music festival gigs, a starring role in Danny Clinch's documentary Louisiana Fairytale and performances alongside Pres Hall superfans My Morning Jacket, last year also saw the release of the album Preservation, the band's best-seller, showcasing its inimitable chops alongside the likes of Tom Waits and Pete Seeger. But 2011 wasn't the band's biggest year: the group enters 2012 celebrating its 50th anniversary at an all-star gig at Carnegie Hall with another roster of music stars — performers bowing to Pres Hall's evolving legend. In June, Jaffe told Gambit, "The only moment you get to go into this creative cocoon is when you perform, and I want to amplify that. I want to make it bigger."

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