Sunday, September 4, 2005

Comebackhorslips Back in Business Tonight

Our main page, which is still accessible through the Home button on the splash page will be back in business later tonight. The New Orleans page will now be a part of the site, with ongoing links to relief efforts in the global musical community. I should say that it was Barry McCabe who first inspired this with his announcement of the CD Baby efforts.

But just take a moment and imagine a world that never knew New Orleans or the Mississippi Delta. This is a world that would not have rock and roll as we know it, the blues as we know it, rhythm and blues as we know it, cajun or zydeco as we know it, swing music as we know it (No Sing, Sing, Sing from Mr. Prima, for instance), and the myriad inspired forms of reggae and ska as we know it (Jamaican musicians listened to offshore New Orleans radio and remade the beat they heard through the static their own)...and above all, Jazz. The ingredients would be there, and surely something else would have emerged from another set of circumstances, but the sound of New Orleans and the Delta in life, death, joy and grief is unique and irreplaceable. And it will be heard again.

In the spirit of being back in business:

New Orleans bar keeps doors open through catastrophe

...Bourbon Street largely escaped the floods that hit after New Orleans levees were breached. And in the first days, a few stranded tourists also wandered in to sample the warm beer that became the drink of the day after the power went off and the refrigerators stopped working.

"Whatcha need, darling, you're all right?" the gruff bartender called out to a sweaty customer as he squeezed into her line of sight.

"Something cool, like bourbon," he answered.

Johnny White's has been an island of normalcy in a city shattered by hurricane anarchy and the stench of death.

The tiny joint sits squarely on the corner of Bourbon and Orleans where alcoholics and derelicts mix with a steady stream of yuppies and tourists who play at slumming it.

The doors are wide open.

Nearly a week after the disaster there are not many people walking by to notice. Those that do have stories to tell.

Lisa Smith, 41, is slumped on a bar stool, nursing a rum and coke -- and a huge gash on her side.

"I was floating on a couch drinking Budweiser," she told a friend who walked in as she began to tell the tale of how she escaped the floodwaters and made it back to her home away from home in the French Quarter.

Smith's story was interrupted by cheers which broke out when a man walked in with a cooler of ice.

"Don't get too excited, I'm hoarding this for myself," Sprinkel joked as she lit another cigarette and leaned on a stool behind the bar...

More at link.

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