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Lagniappe

 
THE

Defender Picks

 

LUNDI GRAS

February 27th

Red Beans Parade

Marigny Route, 2PM

9th annual march celebrating NOLA's famous Lundi dish

 

Krewe of Proteus

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 5:15PM

The second-oldest parading krewe offers a legendary look at Carnival festivities 

 

Krewe of Orpheus

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 6PM

Harry Connick Jr.'s superkrewe is joined by Westworld actors and an SNL comedian

 

Washboard Chaz

The Carver Theater, 7PM

Washboard Chaz takes a break from The Tin Men tonight to lead the Lundi Gras Blues Party

 

Igor and the Red Elvises

Siberia, 6PM

Russian surf rock comes to St. Claude

 

Big Chief Alfred Doucette

Bar Redux, 8PM

Flaming Arrow Warriors Chief is joined by JD Hill & the Jammers, Big Pearl, and the Fugitives of Funk

 

Alexis & the Samurai

Chickie Wah Wah, 8PM

Indie folk duo perform every Monday

 

The Soul Rebels

Blue Nile, 11PM

Brass legends bring da funk

 

Galactic

Tipitina's, 11PM

Funk legends ($50)

 

MARDI GRAS

February 28th

Jefferson City Buzzards

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 6:45AM

The world's oldest Mardi Gras marching club kicks off the day's celebrations

 

Lyons Carnival Club

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 7AM

Catch them at one of their 10 stops, or meet them for drink at Molly's at the Market at the end of their parade

 

Mondo Kayo Social & Marching Club 

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 7:45AM

Follow Mondo Kayo to be led to an all-day dance party on Frenchmen

 

Pete Fountain's Half-Fast Walking Club

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 7:45AM

Clarinet legend leads his walking krewe to wake up the city for its big party

 

Zulu Social Aide and Pleasure Club

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 8AM

Storied African American krewe is set to dole out coconuts and joy 

 

Societe de Saint Anne

French Quarter Route, 10AM

Wander the Vieux Carre for this parade 

 

KOE

French Quarter Route, 10:15AM

A "cyber" krewe of Carnival enthusiasts from all over the world

 

Rex

Uptown-St. Charles Route, 10AM

Keep an eye out for the iconic Bouef Gras float 

 

Elks Orleanians / Crescent City

Uptown-St. Charles Route, Follows Rex

These truck parades let anyone with wheels join in on the Mardi Gras fun

 

Mardi Gras Indian Orchestra Memoria for Big Chief Roddy Lewis & Tim Green

Hi-Ho Lounge, 3PM

Featuring Jimbo Mathus' Overstuffed Po-boys

 

Fat Tuesday Fish Fry

Bar Redux, 6PM

Annual Mardi Gras fry with local catfish, handcut fries, and homemade slaw

 

Treme Brass Band

d.b.a., 9PM

See the legendary band on their home turf

 

Organized Crime

30/90, 9PM

NOLA funk-jam band with a rotating cast of band members 

 

Smokin' Time Jazz Club

The Spotted Cat, 10PM

Trad jazz masters

 

Rebirth Brass Band

Maple Leaf, 10:30PM

2 sets by the Grammy-winning brass band

 

Jason Neville Band

Vaso, 11:59PM

Member of the famed Neville clan leads his band

 

MERCREDI

March 1st

Dr. Seuss Celebration

St. Tammany Parish, all-day

Celebrate Dr. Seuss's birthday with crafts, snacks, and many fantastical tales

 

Opening Reception: "Waltzing the Muse"

Ogden Museum of Southern Art, 6PM

Ogden's newest exhibition is a Jmes Michalopoulos retrospective

 

New Orleans Jazz Vipers

The Maison, 6:30PM

Local trad jazz standard bearers

 

Pelicans vs. Detroit Pistons

Smoothie King Center, 7PM

The Birds and Pistons go head to head

 

Tin Men

d.b.a., 7PM

The world's premiere washboard-sousaphone-guitar trio

 

New Orleans Community Printshop and Darkroom

Community Print Shop, 7:30PM

Volunteer and members monthly meeting, get involved! 

 

Aurora Nealand & Tom McDermott

Chickie Wah Wah, 8PM

Nealand and McDermott have a fresh take on traditional jazz

 

Delfeayo Marsalis & The Uptown Jazz Orchestra 

Snug Harbor, 8PM & 10PM

Traditional riff and blues sounds

 

Ash Wednesday Singer-Songwriter Showcase

Siberia, 8PM

Featuring Sam Doores, Alex McMurray, Julie Odell, and more

 

Niagara & The Asphalt Jungle

Bar Redux, 9PM

Free screening of two films noir featuring a young Marilyn Monroe

 

Chris & Tami

The New Movement, 9:30PM

Weekly improv from Chris Trew and Tami Nelson

 

Walter "Wolfman" Washington

d.b.a., 10PM

Fiery blues on Frenchmen every week


Carrying the Torch

Flambeau Barers Shed Light on Early Mardi Gras Traditions



Between the colorful floats and raucous marching bands, a humbler – yet no less staid – Mardi Gras tradition slips between the cracks in the marching order. Keepers of the light are known to lead the way for those lost in the dark and that is a perfect way to describe a flambeau carrier.

 

 

They carry large, wooden poles with torches backed by stainless steel high above. In the original New Orleans Mardi Gras celebrations, the flambeau

were carried by slaves and free people of color alongside the floats. They
lit the way for the parade before streetlights.

 

Though they had a utilitarian function, the addition of the flambeau also

had a social element: to incorporate blacks in what was considered a white
carnival. The undertones have lead to much debate about continuing the
tradition, even though the way forward is well lit.

 

To many people, the tradition remains important, and helps keep the Mardi

Gras parades authentic. What many people fail to realize is that many
carriers have passed this tradition down for generations. Like many things
that never go out of style, it is also a great way to make some extra
money.

 

Flambeau carriers were never forced to be carriers. They were always paid.

Originally they were paid $1.50. After World War II, the price was raised
to $2.00. Though the carriers were already getting paid 50 cents more than
prewar prices, they wanted to increase the pay to 5.00. This caused a problem for many of the parades. It came to a point that the parades had to have fewer flambeau, and hire white men to carry them.

 

Eventually, the problems was resolved, and the flambeau were back alongside the floats. The pay is much higher these days and carriers can make up to $ 300 or $ 400 from the tips received from paradegoers.

 

“It was a hell of a lot of fun and I always made at least a $100. It was really tiring though,” said Matt ‘Slyfox’ J Thomas, a local New Orleans resident who happened upon being a flambeau carrier. “I never talked to anyone about being a carrier. It’s just something you find out about. I just went to the beginning of the parade route a few hours before the parade started and they gave me a number and a flambeau.”

 

Though Thomas never talked to anyone directly there are people out there who specifically recruit for flambeau carriers. Barry Donahue is a flambeau coordinator for three parades: Chaos, Proteus, and D’etat. Donahue has been a flambeau coordinator for the past 15-20 years and is very opinionated on how the carriers should act in the parades.

 

“New-line krewes have them dancing and twirling the flambeau, and that is the not the main idea. We want to show people what it was like in the 1800s,” states Donahue. “Old- line krewes have the carriers stand beside and light the floats like it was back in the 1800s.”

 

Old-line krewe refers to the original krewes of Mardi Gras, while new-line or super krewes refers to the newer krewes. Not all krewes have flambeaux but they are looking to add them.  Most krewes own their flambeaux but a few rent from the other krewes. Proteus actually uses the original flambeaux in which the burners used are from streetlights.

 

Nowadays, the torches are kept lit by propane, as opposed to kerosene in times gone by. They also are a lot safer and do not drip like the old ones. The flambeaux have injured no carriers or tourist. It used to be the carriers wore white, hooded gowns gowns called Dominos to protect from the flame and catch the soot from the flambeau. Proteus and Chaos have some of their carriers where the domino in white, while Orpheus have their carriers wear red dominos.

 

Even though flambeau carriers started out as slaves and free people of color, it has become more of a mixed tradition. Today, 75 percent of the carriers had previous ancestors who were carriers, and continue the tradition. But anyone can become a carrier. Carriers vary from high school coaches, ROTC members, students, to the unemployed. Some carriers travel from all over the country just to have the honor of carrying a flambeau. People who do it enjoy it because they get to experience Mardi Gras in a different way and be part of something that has been going on for centuries.

 

And even with the parades less than three weeks away, the ranks of flambeau aren't even full yet for this year. Donahue said is still looking for carriers for the parades he manages. Anyone is welcome to meet at the corner of Camp and Julia for Proteus and Chaos around 3 pm and at Jefferson and Magazine at the same time for D’etat.

 

“We want tourists to see and remember where Mardi Gras comes from. One day we will get back to the traditional way of carrying flambeau,”  Donahue said. However, one can say that not only tourists need to see and remember where Mardi Gras comes from. Seeing the parades pass by so many times, native New Orleanians could use a reminder as well.

Are those parades the only

Are those parades the only ones looking for flambeaux, or are there others?

I have witnessed the lighting

I have witnessed the lighting of the lights the flambeau cordnator is not a white man and is a very nice guy

Barry Donahue is a flambeau

Barry Donahue is a flambeau coordinator for three parades: Chaos, Proteus, and D’etat. Donahue has been a flambeau coordinator for the past 15-20 years and is very opinionated on how the carriers should act in the parades.

“New-line krewes have them dancing and twirling the flambeau, and that is the not the main idea. We want to show people what it was like in the 1800s,” states Donahue. “Old- line krewes have the carriers stand beside and light the floats like it was back in the 1800s.”

***

Translation, Mr. Donahue is an uptight white dude who wants black folks to know their place and act as they are told.

I'm sure there are plenty of other ways he would like to show people what life was like in the 1800's.

One last thing, please hand the flambeau money instead of throwing it to them, that is unless black folks scrounging for change is another quaint old timey tradition that needs to be carried on.

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Contributors:

Dead Huey Long, Emma Boyce, Elizabeth Davas, Ian Hoch, Lindsay Mack, Anna Gaca, Jason Raymond, Lee Matalone, Phil Yiannopoulos, Joe Shriner, Chris Staudinger, Chef Anthony Scanio, Tierney Monaghan, Stacy Coco, Rob Ingraham,

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Art Director:

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