x-x-x-x-x. New Orleans Mardi Gras Bacchus and Dionysis funk minus the church.


New Orleans is a wild (pronounced, waahl) place. Amtrak left Pensacola at 3:00 AM on Wednesday and arrived at Noon.

Rode with a Louisianna boy named Anthony. Big, bald, salt-of-the-earth dude who works for Chevron, going from one off-shore pipeline to another and hooking shit up for like $32/hr with LOTS of overtime. Be headed out to Felusia, Iraq in a few weeks to do some work with Halliburton. $2500.00 bonus for that. Make like, $20,000 in a couple of months. Did a shot of whiskey w/ him as we deboarded.

Walk six blocks to “Wall’s” place, a few blocks from Lee Circle, backpacks and drum machine between us.

Wall hosts the community. Air to a Carribean Rum Importer, Old Mill, and ex-salesman; he loves music and art and has doctors, teachers, students, musicians, deadhead friend from back in the day and whoever else hangin’ at the spot. He is a great cook and continually passes plates and bowls full of all types of goodies around. His boy Aaron turned us on to this bad-ass local act called Sir-funk-alot, who do the dirty south thang New Orleans style.

They took us, on mushrooms, to see a basketballl game betwen the New Orleans Hornets and the Dallas Mavericks. Dallas won by only eight points. The Sports DJ thing is funny, playing music based on what’s happening on the court.

Thursday night started at the oldest bar in the country; Le Fites, which used to be the Blacksmith shop that Captain Morgan or some other ill pirate used to hang at. Wall manages the old, divorced black dude, JB something, who spends four nights a week banging out classic R & B and rock tunes to which locals and tourists sing along, sitting around the old grand piano. This old-ass guitarist named Jimmy something, who plays (played) with Fats Domino accompanies.

Wall takes us to his new bar which has super-slammin funkie hip-hop playing and, between dancing, a fucked-up looking crystal meth couple told me dark tales from their recent history.

Then we went and heard the bass player, George Porter, founder of the seminal funk band, the Meters, and it filled our souls with comfort. Did occur that it’s probably due to our economic system that we heard him playing with two rock dudes in a jam band situation, as opposed to some of the funk players we used to hear him with on records. Place was filled with dead-head types.

Woke up Friday feeling like crap. The many flavors of sugar.

The “White Bitch”, AKA Michael Patrick Welch, musician and author of The Donkey Show, grabbed us and took us to his after-school program to perform for, and talk with about twenty black kids from the ghetto, between ages six and eleven. Was a blast and an epiphany for Rivka.

Next time we slept was Monday morning, 3:00 AM on the Amtrak back home. Here’s a basic overview of what came between: Quintron and Miss Pussycat’s Maritime Celebration at the Spellcaster Lodge, which is a large basement. Tianna Huxx rocks the stage. The music is electro-Funk with church removed and replaced with a warehouse. Then we recognize two friends in the Tear Jerkers from Memphis who play ballsy, rootsy, rock and roll. Someone pulled us into the back room and you know what happens there. Last act to play is Ray Bong which is electro-xperimental-psychedelic dance shit and real fun. The sun’s rising and MC Trachiotomy throws the stragglers in his van to begin tomorrow’s party.

King James (with incizers of gold) is playin’ one of those Robert Johnson blues guitars in the amazing bywater back yard, Jo-elle is installing the fuckin’ hot tub, DJ Math Problem is turning us on to hundreds of music tracks from around the universe, El Tonios re-appears. This girl’s husband was killed in a car chase with cops, Rivka and Ada tell each others life story for fifteen hours. This one won’t talk to that one and this one’s not invited ‘cause they shouldn’t have done that and you need people you can trust and we know way more than we need to, but we keep asking the questions.

Tired. Where’s the President? Here’s Hans who designed the poster. Wow. Great. Nice to meet you. You rock. You made all this shit? You do all this shit? Drope! Exciting. Let’s run for beer? You got it, you’re independantly wealthy (Not Hans, another dude), sweet!

All cleaned up and set up stage, PA, lights and shit in this empty warehouse across the street and folks started showin’ up with their gear. The As Is band from San Fransisco are these bad-ass horn players and drummer who play fuckin’ fast, gypsie dance music and they’d been in town practicing at Trach’s house for days already. Then there’s this cute, dandy-ish heterosexual queen, Ratty Scurvix, who does a solo gig with organ, synth, bass drum and snare drum with foot pedals and a bunch of crazy puppeteers behind him. Joyous goth.

Imaine the band is a real hot guy who gets on stage wearing a wet suit and walkman headphones and “rocks out” to the music that noone else can hear. It was great.

White Bitch played with his band, complete with MC Gregory who’s this fourteen year old black kid, Trachiotomy and El Tonios rocked another set of that funk-where-church-is-replaced-by-warehouse music.

A sick-ass duo who used to be a couple but now he’s gay and they still do their thing blew everyone away and stole the show with their trapeeze act.

The president showed up just in time, ‘cause our asses was damn near worn out. Mad Happy played at dawn to a great dance floor; excited, uninhibited and fully costumed. Last band was Tia Carerra from Austin who do gorgeuos, instrumental music; very loud with distortion, moving a lot of air.

DJ’s wonderful; Kid Calculator, DJ Math Problem, Trashmaster Mike and, the most fun to dance funky to, Micronaut.

Sun’s up again and Tark offers us acid, but we’re too wise. Still end up sharing 7 hours with he and his ex, Jackie, crying and taking turns boy on girl, telling all the deep secrets. Rivka got freaked out when Jackie was talking about eating bugs. Think she had a can of “food”, imported from somewhere.

Ali, the belly dancer, and Bobby Crowe, the philosopher took us back to Wall’s place by evening, before the Bacchus parade began.

Chris Radcliff lives across the street. One of the cat’s who started Burning Man, and founder of Drunken Santa Clauses (where fifty guys get on a plane dressed as Santa Clause, fly into a town and drunkenly, lovingly terrorize it).

Killing time at his place (a house he and some lady restored, transforming the whole neighborhood) was funny. Picture a middle-aged, Hunter Thompson type with a straw cowboy hat with giant red scarf and short shorts and a giant abscess on his thigh, turned into a clown face. And Shelly (a school counselor) sitting across the table, dressed as a queen with three foot feather fan, and Ron dressed as a dandy in a twenties suit and hat, complaining that his new in-laws, Sri Lancan royalty, expect him to be some kind of a king, or something.

Otter comes in, wasted, strait off one of the Dionysis floats in a dress you could get arrested for with a huge, battery-powered cock, dragging Jo-Elle along and they go into an S & M thing. She throws him under the table and is kicking him in the face and chest and chit and saying mean things to him and I’m lookin’ at ‘im like, “You want some help, man?” And RadChris goes into this crazy story about, “When I was a hooker in LA and me an’ this girl were turning a trick with this doctor from the scene and he’s shooting us up with delaudid and (some upper) alternately. And she was real hot to get her sex change. So he goes out and get’s his bag and puts a towel out over the hood of the car and cuts her balls off right there and drops ‘em in a rocks glass.” Back on the Amtrak at 3:00 AM on Sunday and in recovery. Keepin’ our heads up.

All you boys an’ girls better stop takin’ each other for fuckin’ granted. ‘Cause you don’t know what the fuck you got until it’s gone.

Passionately loving you crazy people. Mike iLL