Cody Jinks, Dragon Smoke, Shanytown Underground: music in New Orleans for Dec. 9-15, 2021 | Music
An otherwise regular week in New Orleans boasts a bounty of live music, both touring acts and local favorites.
THURSDAY, Dec. 9
Cuban-born, New Orleans-based percussionist Alexey Marti powers a quintet for two sets of high-energy conga and rhumba music at Snug Harbor. Shows are at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.; tickets are $30.
A trio consisting of drummer Johnny Vidacovich, bassist James Singleton and keyboardist David Torkanowsky returns to the Maple Leaf Bar at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 advance, $20 at the door.
Punk, ska and indie-rock singer-songwriter Jeff Rosenstock visits Tipitina’s, on a bill with Slaughter Beach, Dog + Oceanator and Bad Operation. The show starts at 8 p.m.; tickets are $20.
Local singer and guitarist Alex McMurray holds court at Chickie Wah Wah at 7 p.m.; admission is $15.
The New Orleans-based Blato Zlato, which is heavily influenced by traditional Balkan music and the sounds of Eastern Europe, fires up at the outdoor Broadside on North Broad Street at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15.
FRIDAY, Dec. 10
A Texan by birth, Cody Jinks fronted a thrash metal band for years until realizing hardcore country was his true calling. Following a 2015 tour with alternative country star Sturgill Simpson, Jinks’ 2016 release “I’m Not the Devil” hit No. 4 on Billboard’s country charts. In addition to original material, he has applied his baritone to covers of Merle Haggard’s “The Way I Am” and Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here.” He released two albums, “After the Fire” and “The Wanting,” in October 2019, followed by the concert album “Red Rocks Live” in December 2020 and another studio album, “Mercy,” last month; all four are on his own Late August Records. Next summer, Jinks joins Luke Combs at the Buckeye Country Superfest at Ohio Stadium. On Friday at 8 p.m., he kicks off the first of two consecutive nights at the Saenger Theatre. Randy Rogers and Flatland Cavalry open. Tickets start at $75 plus fees.
Also on Friday, the Iguanas intermingle New Orleans rhythm & blues, Americana rock, Tex-Mex and other musical influences at Chickie Wah Wah at 8 p.m.; tickets are $20.
Trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis’ jazz quintet is at Snug Harbor at 8 and 10 p.m.; tickets are $35.
Tipitina’s hosts “Jagged Little Pill: An Alanis Morissette Tribute” featuring vocalist Alexis Marceaux, of Sweet Crude and Alexis & the Samurai. The show starts at 10 p.m.; tickets are $15.
SATURDAY, Dec. 11
Before guitarist Papa Mali settled in New Orleans to play blues-derived and Grateful Dead-influenced music, he spent two decades in a hard-touring reggae band called the Killer Bees. In 1988, the Killer Bees topped the reggae charts with the album “Groovin’” and became one of the first American bands invited to perform at the Reggae Sunsplash festival in Jamaica. Looking to reconcile that time in his musical life with his more recent history, Papa Mali has formed Shantytown Underground, an eight piece, horn-driven ensemble that emphasizes the critical connections between classic New Orleans rhythm & blues and early Jamaican ska, rocksteady and reggae. In that endeavor, he’s joined by members of the Iguanas, 007, the Special Men and the Roadmasters. Together they’ll perform songs by such Jamaican pioneers as the Skatalites, Phylis Dillon and the Heptones, plus classics by Irma Thomas, Fats Domino and Lee Dorsey. See Shanytown Underground at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Broadside. Tickets are $20.
Blues guitarist Little Freddie King and his band venture across Lake Pontchartrain to the Dew Drop Jazz & Social Hall, 430 Lamarque St., in Mandeville. The seated show starts at 6 p.m.
The all-star quartet Dragon Smoke consists of drummer Stanton Moore and bassist Rob Mercurio, of Galactic, Dumpstaphunk keyboardist and singer Ivan Neville, and guitarist/singer Eric Lindell. Given the members’ busy individual schedules, they generally only join forces as Dragon Smoke during the festival and holiday seasons. They’re at Tipitina’s on Saturday with opening act J and the Causeways. Showtime is 10 p.m.; tickets are $25.
Following a free 6 p.m. show by Tuba Skinny, the legendary Dirty Dozen Brass Band fires up at d.b.a. at 10 p.m.; admission is $20.
Singer-songwriter Paul Sanchez is at Chickie Wah Wah at 7 p.m.; admission is $15.
Drummer Herlin Riley anchors a jazz quartet at Snug Harbor at 8 and 10 p.m. Tickets are $35.
Hardcore country singer Cody Jinks is back at the Saenger Theatre for the second consecutive night.
The Fleur de Tease burlesque troupe stages a holiday show at the Toulouse Theatre in the former One Eyed Jacks. Shows are at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.; tickets start at $20.
SUNDAY, Dec. 12
Keyboardist Jon Cleary and his funk/contemporary R&B band the Absolute Monster Gentlemen groove at Tipitina’s. For this show, general admission, standing-room-only tickets are only available for the Tip’s balcony, priced at $20 plus fees. All downstairs access is for reserved seating at tables, with tickets starting at $30 plus fees.
Loose Cattle, the local Americana ensemble fronted by Tony Award-winning actor Michael Cerveris and singer Kimberly Kaye, hosts “A Very Loose Cattle Christmas” at the outdoor Broadside. The holiday hootenanny boasts a long list of special guest singers, including Luke Allen, Mia Borders, John Boutté, Debbie Davis, Arsene Delay, Meschiya Lake, Lilli Lewis, Paul Sanchez and Edward Simon. Showtime is 6 p.m. Tickets are $25.
Keyboardist Joe Krown and harmonica player Jason Ricci team up at the Maple Leaf at 7 p.m. Admission is $15 at the door.
MONDAY, Dec. 13
Virginia-based indie-rock duo Illiterate Light, described as a cross between My Morning Jacket and the Black Keys, rocks d.b.a. with Jack Sledge at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15.
Woodenhead guitarist Jimmy Robinson plays a free solo show at Chickie Wah Wah at 7 p.m.
TUESDAY, Dec. 14
This month, Preservation Hall has resumed hosting live music seven nights a week for the first time since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. On Tuesdays in December, the featured band is the namesake Preservation Hall Jazz Band, the main touring and recording unit. This is the version of the band that will open two shows for Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats in Denver on Dec. 16-17, then open for the Revivalists at Mardi Gras World on New Year’s Eve. The Preservation Hall Jazz Band will play 45-minute shows at 5 p.m., 6:15 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $25 and must be purchased in advance via the Preservation Hall website.
Los Angeles avant-jazz and electronic music composer and percussionist Louis Cole leads his Big Band at Tipitina’s, on a bill with Thumpasaurus. The show starts at 9 p.m.; tickets are $18.
Catch Sarah Quintana at 7 p.m. at Chickie Wah Wah; admission is $15.
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 15
Following a free show by the Tin Men at 6 p.m., d.b.a. hosts Walter “Wolfman” Washington’s birthday bash at 9; admission is $20.
The Maple Leaf celebrates the late piano wizard James Booker’s birthday with a plethora of pianists starting at 6 p.m. They include Tom McDermott, Keiko Komaki, Joe Krown, CR Gruver, Tom Worrell and David Torkanowsky. Tickets are $20 advance, $25 at the door.
Clarinetist, saxophonist and flutist Charlie Gabriel, the senior member of the main Preservation Hall Jazz Band, plays three sets at the hall. Tickets start at $25.
Saxophonist Brad Walker stages a tribute to the 1965 John Coltrane album “Ascension” at the Broadside. Showtime is 7 p.m. Tickets start at $12.
Harmonica player Johnny Sansone is joined by guitarist John Fohl at Chickie Wah Wah at 7 p.m.; admission is $20.