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NOMA’s Besthoff Sculpture Garden (5:00 PM)
The NOLA Project presents this festive comedy that pits two of Shakespeare's most beloved characters in a war of words and wits
City Park’s Botanical Garden (5:00 PM)
New Orleanian songwriter performs at the weekly outdoor concert series
The Ogden Museum (6:00 PM)
Singer/ songwriter who has recently performed at Austin City Limits Music Festival and provided tour support for Raul Malo and the Wood Brothers
The Foundation Gallery (6:00 PM)
A screening of Maya's award-winning animation "Pareidolia" followed by a Q &A with the artist
Snug Harbor (8:00 & 10:00 PM)
The third evening of a chamber music festival that has something for classical aficionados and dilettantes alike
Hi Ho Lounge (9:00 PM)
Hip hop artist raps on St. Claude with his album Trap Hop
Circle Bar (10:00 PM)
Performing tracks from the new album 'What a World'
Elon's Debut EP Showcases A New Soulful Voice with Louisiana Roots
A soulful new singer songwriter who goes simply by Elon returned to her home state after seven years away for the completion and release of her first EP. Her voice is rich, deep and resonating, making for a raspy, Macy Gray-style of baritone. The music fuses rock, pop and urban sounds, layered expertly in a way that reflects a grounded knowledge of music theory under lyrics that speak of young love lost.
The singer grew up in the southeastern Louisiana town of Houma, surrounded by song and a strong female presence.
“I grew up listening to old school music and going to church. I was raised by all women.” She explains, “My father passed when I was very young and my aunt would go up on the choir stand and sing. I wanted to do that too. There was strength in the female voice. I saw it in Janis [Joplin] and Etta [James] and especially Tina [Turner] too. They commanded so much presence and power as soon as they took the stage.”
Elon sang with her church choir every Sunday, became a drum major in junior high school and maintained the position through graduation. She went on to study Jazz and trumpet in college and was on her way to being a professional horn player or symphony conductor when she decided to shift her focus to the realm of production.
As she puts it, “Women are rarely the ones pulling the strings in that regard, I wanted to produce and write and be behind the scenes in the music capital of the world.”
In pursuit of these goals, Elon made a home for herself in Atlanta where she began to work closely with a rapper who goes by “Xxxclusive Catherine Jenkins”, making beats, writing and singing hooks. The two of them would perform at Old Smith’s Bar and Red Light Café among other hotspots where they had a “small but good local following”. The experience led her to the discovery of her own vocal talent.
“It wasn’t until [then] that fans started noticing my voice,” she says, “their belief in me is the reason I decided to make the transition to try a solo career.”
Though she began to write the EP in Atlanta, it soon became clear to Elon that she needed to return home in order to incorporate the depth of her history into the new sound she sought to create.
“I moved back here from Atlanta because I wanted to be closer to my family…I wanted to get back to my roots. I had a way to do more with my music by incorporating my roots. I wanted it to sound more original, more raw,” she said.
She soon linked up with Tom Drummond of Better Than Ezra among other local musicians. Despite the years in Atlanta, she says there is something about the musical climate in Louisiana that “has a special sort of magic” which she wanted to incorporate into her EP.
For the collection of six tracks under the title “Only Elon”, the artist set aside the trumpet, an instrument she’s now been playing for 18 years, and has been using a mini keyboard for most of her sounds. The songs focus on romance and yearning because, as she puts it, “this is something I wanted to get off my chest, when you’re young you think love is all that matters but growing up you kind of try to break free of that and it’s an empowering process.”
In keeping with the personal slant to her sound, Elon plans to transform her music as she grows and changes, as well. For the full CD, she’s considering incorporating the Trumpet and plans to expand to broader lyrical themes.
In celebration of the young talent’s solo debut, an EP release party is set to take place in the Burgundy Bar of the Saint Hotel (931 Canal St.) tonight at 9:30pm and will include performances by Tom Drummond on bass, "Big" Sam Williams on trombone, Andrew "Da Phessah" Baham on trumpet, John "Papa" Gros on organ, Chris Arceneaux on the drums and Shane Theriot on guitar, in addition to Elon herself.
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