“Marigny Strolling” in the deep and dense foggy night with heavy moonlight on Frenchmen Street just behind the Vieux Carré. Stumbling and bumbling and rumbling, it’s New Orleans city bouncing from D.B.A to the Blue Nile music venues. It’s all smoke and beer and whiskey and sex and sax and funk and trombone. The band starts its third piece still on the first set. It’s Saturday night; everything clicking just right. Big man sousaphonist blows left and right, up and down, pumping the knees marching-style while blowing the hell out the brass. The crowd, hot and high and frenzied, swing forward, backward, left, right, it does not matter. Trombonist with cheeks puffing out like a blowfish about to explode like the “wafer-thin” fat man Mr. Creosote and The Meaning of Life. Drummer desperately tries to maintain pace wildly beating on Kerouac’s[i] “rolling crash of butt-scarred drums.” Trombone man puts down his brass to shout, “You got to wind it up” and something about Michael Buck while the crowd cares less about the actual words because it’s only the beat that means a damn thing. Read more
Saturday nights in the deep New Orleans June summer stick to the skin like the juice from the Rue Des Orangers, or the city’s municipal street “orange” – Satsuma – that sticks to your fingers. It’s “bar in the car” night as down and almost out Lightfoot and I head with a few dollars in hand to Rouses Supermarket in Midcity to buy a bottle of NOLA rum and coke to put in an ice-filled cooler in the back of his car. We invented “bar in a car” years ago to compensate for the costs involved in our nights on the town, (only back then it was, to confess, Red Bull and raspberry vodka along with a few choice enhancements). New Orleans provides a prime setting where those lacking money can provide their own drinks pouring cheap cocktails, wine, or straight hard liquor into plastic cups from the back of their car with a self-supplied bar. Most drinking venues along Decatur Street between Ursulines Street and Esplanade Avenue in the Vieux Carré allow people to enter their establishment with drinks purchased elsewhere.