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Guys and dolls – this is something to get alllll hot and bothered over. The New Orleans Bingo! Show are bringing their delta rock sounds, aerialists, dancers, fun, games, and a whole GAGGLE of special guests to the Kennedy Center this Saturday (4.13). Our enthusiasm about this is, to put it mildly, unbridled — not even close to being on the chain. There’s JUST SO MUCH HAPPENING ON THIS LINEUP! ! ! It’s gon’ be spicayyyy.


New Orleans Bingo! Show

Have you heard these guys? Let’s get that out of the way first. Seems only right.

Sure, it wouldn’t be unusual for a band to tack the word “Show” at the end of their name as some sort of cutesy way of saying “we’re more than just a band.”  New Oreans Bingo! Show is far from just a band. Going to see them is setting yourself up for a multi-media, cross-cultural, intergenerational experience, complete with original black-and-white silent films, aerialists, dancers, ingénues, clowns, audience interaction, bingo games, slapstick comedy, and hats! Lots of hats.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band

Preservation Hall Jazz Band is a mantle that has been passed down through multiple generations of New Orleans brass musicians. It is a monicker that is now in its fifth decade of use, and has grown a national following. We loved it when they performed alongside My Morning Jack at at Bonnaroo ’11 and can’t wait to see ’em again.

A little history from the band’s site/mouth to you: “The PHJB began touring in 1963 and for many years there were several bands successfully touring under the name Preservation Hall. Many of the band’s charter members performed with the pioneers who invented jazz in the early twentieth century including Buddy Bolden, Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong, and Bunk Johnson. Band leaders over the band’s history include the brothers Willie and Percy Humphrey, husband and wife Billie and De De Pierce, famed pianist Sweet Emma Barrett, and in the modern day Wendell and John Brunious. These founding artists and dozens of others passed on the lessons of their music to a younger generation who now follow in their footsteps like the current lineup.”

Big Freedia

Big Freedia is at the forefront of the “Sissy Bounce” rap scene originating from the housing projects that comprise New Orleans street culture. What’s Sissy Bounce? Exactly what it sounds like — it’s wild, it’s loads of fun, it’s super gay, and it’s going to be spectacular. We’ve swooned over her set at Bonnaroo and fallen in love multiple times over on any and all D.C. stops, which almost always result in photos like this:


She has had several New Orleans hit singles such as “Gin in My System” and “Azz Everywhere!” from her albums An Ha, Oh Yeah (1999) and Queen Diva (2003).



GIVERS is an indie rock band from Lafayette, Louisiana that has established quite a pedigree over the past three years: Coachella and Lollapalooza in 2012 as well as the New Orleans Jazz Fest. They’ve made it onto our top songs of the year posts and we ALWAYS try to catch them when they’re in town. (see this show and here, just for example).

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They also performed with fellow special guests Preservation Hall Jazz Band as part of their 50th Anniversary at Carnegie Hall in January of 2012. Oh, they also had a song on Glee.


Fleur de Tease

Fleur de Tease is a New Orleans’ Variety Burlesque Revue, comprised of a sultry cadre of burlesque dancers, magicians, fire eaters, comedians, and aerialists.  Why stop there? Throw in some sword swallowers, singers, and other circus acts and you have a typical (if there is such a thing) evening with this premiere N’awlins act.

Be prepared to thrill your senses with the lovely burlesque beauties, the comedic cuties, and talented tricksters of Fleur de Tease.”

Helen Gillet

New Orleans-based cellist, singer, composer and improviser Helen Gillet grew up in Belgium, Singapore, Chicago and Wisconsin. She’s rubbed elbows with countless musicians: Smokey Robinson, Hamid Drake, Nikki Glaspie (Beyonce), and THE John Popper. The list goes on and on. Expect her set to be as rich as her background.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat

Their bio speaks for itself: “Quintron’s permanent collaborator is none other than master puppeteer, MISS PUSSYCAT who plays maracas and sings, as well as entertaining all age groups with her highly amusing technicolor puppet shows.
Hers are complex puppet shows beautifully crafted for success in intimate venues of late night drinking and dancing: tactile, idiosyncratic characters, pithy dialogue, electronically pixilated soundtracks, and trippy black light effects create a visual and engaging overture/finale to Quintron and Miss Pussycat’s music sets.”

In need of more? We’ve chatted with Quintron about Myspace, puppetry, and getting whiskey poured on themselves by some random guy on acid. We’ve  seen the duo multiple times and even caught ’em playing with Black Lips, and can promise they always rule in the weirdest, best way.


Basically, you can expect this set to be right at home at the Kennedy Center this Saturday. Multi-formatted, saturated in the style of the Crescent City, and designed to be a peak sensory experience.


Mystic Pony Aerial Troupe

The absolutely insane, endearingly weird “about” section on Mystic Pony’s Facebook:  “Legend has it, a unicorn and a pegasus fell in love and had lovechildren acrobats called The Mystic Ponies. These sparkle filled stallions fly and flip thru the air with ease, in the whimsical way that the mystic ponies do. They shall bedazzle your eyeballs with spectacles of aerial feats. It is said to be a troupe of wonderment, and well of coarse a considerable amount of YAY! SO NAAAAAAY (or NIEGH rather) ! So YAAAA”


Young Fellaz Brass Band

Bringin’ the street to the stage this Saturday for sure. People, this is what New Orleans sounds like. It’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.

Noisician Coalition

The cadence, spirit, heart and soul of New Orleans culture. These guys are the musical equivalent of cajun food. Mm Mm good, so to speak.