Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Le Festival de Ville de Libre (Freetown Festival) - Sunday, January 28th at 2:00pm

Le Festival de Ville de Libre (Freetown Festival) - Sunday, January 28th at 2:00pm

Come celebrate the history of the Freetown Neighborhood in Lafayette with a Second Line March through the neighborhood led by renowned trumpeter and vocalist, James Andrews and the Crescent City Allstars (A bio is included below). This celebration is a joint effort between Cité des Arts, the Freetown Neighborhood Historic District Association and St. Pauls Catholic Church. The event is made possible through a grant received from Project HEAL, the SOS Musicians Fund and the Acadiana Arts Council.

The Second Line will begin at 627 Vermilion St. between Gorden St. and Lamar St. It will wind through about an eight block area of the Freetown Neighborhood ending at Good Hope Chapel located on the corner of Convent St. and Garden St. The day will culminate with two music and artistic cultural presentations at Good Hope Chapel.

The first presentation at 3:00pm will feature James Andrews and the Crescent City Allstars and will be facilitated by Austin Sonnier, Jr., a local author, musician, playwright and artist. This educational program will focus on the history of the Tremé Neighborhood Jazz Style and other neighborhood Jazz styles to come out of New Orleans. James Andrews, trumpeter and vocalist, locally known as "Satchmo of the Ghetto" grew up and still lives in the famous New Orleans neighborhood of Tremé. As the grandson of the late Jesse Hill (of "Ooh-Poo-Pah-Doo" fame), James was present at many of his grandfather's gigs and therefore was musically tutored at a young age. James is also the older brother of Troy"Trombone Shorty" Andrews. He has performed with many local brass bands including the Tremé Brass Band and New Birth Brass Band before forming his own For James, as for many musicians who came up on the streets of New Orleans, the Treme neighborhood, located directly north of the Frenc!
h Quarter, represents a distinct musical heritage. This neighborhood is more popular for second-line parades and brass bands. His acclaimed solo album "Satchmo of the Ghetto", a mix of traditional New Orleans Trumpet workouts, acid jazz-styled, instrumental funk and gruff and soulful Louis Armstrong influenced vocals also features appearances by Dr. John and Allen Toussaint.

The second presentation at 4:00pm will be "Freetown Sketches" written by Austin Sonnier Jr. This is a composition that incorporates Jazz improvization and the spoken word. It is an assemblage of short sketches that reincarnate various landmarks, people and situations that were once embraced by a unique neighborhood called Freetown. This double-media dialogue was influenced by a communal spirit that held together this cosmopolitan haven during the early1950's. Actress/Singer Bria Hobgood will read and Austin Sonnier, Jr. will play the soprano saxophone.
(Austin Sonnier, Jr. (Playwright, Author, Composer) is a native Louisianian. He is the author of Five Books: /Willie Geary “Bunk” Johnson: The New Iberia Years (1977),Second Line: Jazzmen of Southwestern Louisiana (1990), A Guide to the Blues: History, Who’s Who, Research Sources (1994), The Violin in New Orleans Traditional Jazz (2006),/ and/ Jazz, Hoodoo & Gumbo (2006)./ His magazine articles have been published in England, Austria, Sweden, Italy, Spain and various Jazz magazines in the United States. He has written a number of plays and musicals, including /The End of a Perfect Death, Poppa Jazz: Jammin’ on a Blue Note, Head and Tales, Duddy’s Delight, The Greasy Spoon Restaurant/Funeral Parlor, Satchmo & Miss Lillian, Salty Dogs/(which had performances in New York City, Dallas, and Edinburgh, Scotland), /A Tribute to Billie Holiday, /and /A Salute to Sinatra. /He is presently working on two plays: /Lady Gardenia /and/ Willie the Lion./ He is a member of “The American Soc!
iety of Composers, Authors and Publishers”, and has received commissions to compose music for a number of major dance performances. He was awarded a “National Endowment for the Arts” grant and has presented papers at the “Center for Black Music Research/Columbia College, Chicago” and the “Michigan Academy of Science, Arts and Letters.”)

WHEN: Sunday, January 28, 2007 at 2:00pm - 5:00pm
WHERE: Second Line March begins at 627 Vermilion St. between Gorden St. and Lamar St. It will wind through about an eight block area of the Freetown Neighborhood ending at Good Hope Chapel located on the corner of Convent St. and Garden St.
COST: Free to the public
For additional information please contact Cité des Arts at 337-291-1122

The following images were taken in New Orleans, at the first Second Line, after the hurricanes hit. Enjoy!





See every one there!

N.B. Capstone (the developers of the student apartment nightmare) were approached to support this event. At the time of posting, it is not known whether they will show support for Freetown. Their commitment to the area will continue to be monitored and reported here.

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