Marigny

Who IS that guy? If you lived here, you’d know.

Amzie Adams (photographer/”politician”/sculptor/musician/filmmaker/poet) is a French Quarter fixture. I met him for the first time several years ago when I was working in Jackson Square, as he was/is good friends with my boss over there. Many ‘Quarter Rats’ (established French Quarter residents) don’t know what to think of him, however he’s just as much a part of this city as the jazz, the streetcars, Ruthie the Duck Lady, or red beans & rice on a Monday. He’s part of the backdrop we’ve all been woven into, a functional character akin to seeing Mickey Mouse at Disney World – without the paycheck, with less clothes, and probably a little more frightening to little kids and their suburban parents.

So check out the instrument he has in this photo (taken 6/27/10). He stopped by our moving sale this past Saturday, and wanted to show K.D. (my wife) his new upright bass. He built it out of an old wooden dresser. The strings are weed-whacker line, and it sounds just like, well, a bass! Apparently he had purchased a new (traditional) upright, then liked the sound of his own better so he sold it and gigs around with the axe you see here.

You can read more about Amzie Adams here:
All Amzie All The Time
New Orleans Art by Amzie Adams

Dancin’ my way home to the Young Fellas Brass Band

I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve walked home via Frenchman and heard the Young Fellas Brass Band. Last night on my way home from Port of Call, they were on their usual corner at midnight.

Once I got several blocks past them into the [marigny] rectangle, I realized I was still dancing and could still hear them – the entire way home.

My walk normally includes 8 blocks of shotgun houses, creole cottages, camelback and slave quarter apartments, lush courtyards with cats lounging on uneven brick sidewalks, blue-fonted street names engraved on corners, crickets and frogs singing at the top of their lungs behind a thick wrought iron gate of the Aquatic Gardens, and dive bars with inspiring names like “Lost Love Lounge”. I know I’m close when I see giant bloom of neon jellyfish staring my way as I turn the corner a block from home. Last night, even the jellyfish were charmed by the Young Fellas.

That’s my “I love New Orleans” moment of the day.