Yesterday I started a series of paintings, called “Music in New Orleans”, based on photos and memories from my stay there, from the 1st until the 12th of February 2010. It was an accident that we arrived in the time building up to the Mardi Gras festivities, and, even more special, to the Super Bowl Final featuring The Saints from New Orleans against The Colts from Indianapolis. The ones who were in the town during these days know what an exceptional time they have witnessed…
Due to the town itself, and to these special events, we spent an incredible time there, full of extremely emotional moments, with the result that we have now declared the town as our second “home town”. Another important factor was that we were re-acquainted there with a wonderful guy called Ted, whom we had met for the first time last Summer in Sanlucar de Barrameda (Andalucia, Provincia de Cadiz) on our way to Portugal. Ted is originally from New Orleans and is actually spending his life between Sanlucar and New Orleans, As we met him in Sanlucar, we both, Kevin and me, felt that we were on the same wavelength, and it was so touching to meet again in New Orleans.
As he says himself, we are now “friends for ever”.
I have been confronted with New Orleans music in some different ways, in live gigs in bars, in the street, at the Mardi Gras and the Saints parade. Unfortunately I did not do as many photos and sketches as I should have done, being much too busy enjoying the whole stuff! But well, I will make do with what I have. And anyway the memories are still very alive within me, it should help!
I start the series with 2 paintings from a bar deliciously called “The Spotted Cat”, on Frenchmen Street. This was one of the first places we went to, the very first night in New Orleans,. There was a Jazz band playing there, called “The Jazz Vipers”: they were simply wonderful. I am generally not a jazz fan, but I must say that these guys amazed me, all of them, not only in their instrumental playing, but also in their singing and general attitude. They just sounded and looked TRUE. If we come back to New Orleans one day -and we will do everything we can to make it happen!-, this will be the first band I want to see again, this is for sure!
In my portraits blog you can see a painting of two of the Jazz Vipers. But you know, even when they were not playing, they were extremely artistic: my eye was caught by this wonderful still life in the break…
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