String Cheese Incident
NOLA All-Stars With Hermann and Hollingsworth
A number of veteran New Orleans musicians went on something of a political convention tour over the past few weeks, beginning at Denver's Fillmore Auditorium on August 24 for the DNC and coming to a close last Monday at Minneapolis' The First Avenue Club in time for the RNC. The all-star cast featured such notables as The Voice of the Wetlands All Stars (which features the likes of Tab Benoit, George Porter Jr., Cyril Neville, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, Johnny Vidacovich and Anders Osborne), the New Orleans Brass All-Stars (boasting Donald Harrison, Jr., Kirk Joseph, and James Andrews), the Soul Rebels Brass Band and the Wild Tchoupitoulas Mardi Gras Indians. The tour also made stops in Aspen, CO and Jackson Hole, WY and, as expected, drew in a few notable guests along the way.
Both Colorado date also featured the Yes We Can Band, an ensemble anchored by original Meters members George Porter Jr., Zigaboo Modeliste, Leo Nocentelli and, in Denver, featuring their longtime associates Allen Toussaint, Walter "Wolfman" Washington and Randy Newman. The Meters segment found String Cheese Incident's Kyle Hollingsworth and Widespread Panic's JoJo Hermann filling in for Art Neville in Denver and Aspen, respectively, on a handful of Meters chestnuts. In addition, the revue's Aspen gig featured an appearance by area-resident John Oates (of Hall & Oates), who jammed with Benoit, Henry Butler and Cyril Neville, among others. The shows benefited Friends of New Orleans Friends of New Orleans, a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan, membership organization that "provides a vehicle for people in the US and abroad who care about this region, to declare their support and get involved."